By a margin of 2,5%, Moldova will have a second round of elections.
Igor Dodon, who wants to reverse Moldova’s course toward European integration, secured 48,5% on Sunday’s elections. Dodon would have needed a 51% share of the vote to avoid a run-off on November 13.
Dodon wants a referendum for Moldova’s withdrawal for its Association Agreement signed in 2014 and joining the Eurasian Customs Union.
His main pro-EU candidate, Maia Sandu, secured 38.2%. These numbers are close to exit polls and both candidates accept the result. Sandu is a former World Bank economist.
The Prime Minister, Pavel Filip expressed the hope for “a reform driven triangle,” essentially haling the beginning of an uneasy cohabitation between president, government, and Parliament.
Between Ukraine and Romania, Moldova has been in economic turmoil since 2015, when $1bn was stolen from its bank reserves. The International Monetary Fund and the European Union froze aid to Moldova. And since 2014 the country changed six Prime Ministers.
Public opinion holds many members of the current pro-EU political establishment complicit in the scam.