On 10 March 2017 the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova passed Act No. 23/2017 partly transposing a number of EU instruments and thus simplifying immigration rules.

A. Temporary stay of business sellers, independent professionals and contractual service suppliers

Subject to certain filing requirements with the Moldovan migration authorities, the new rules allow business sellers to stay in Moldova for 90 days within 12 consecutive months for the purpose of negotiating and signing sale and service agreements on behalf of a legal entity incorporated in an EU Member State.

A similar rule applies to contractual service suppliers acting for EU-incorporated legal entities, as well as to independent professionals who can be entitled to a stay in Moldova for an overall six-month period within 12 consecutive months.

B. Provisional stay of managers, specialists and university graduate trainees

Act No. 23/2017 has also eased immigration rules for EU managers, specialists and graduate trainees.

  1. Managers, i.e. citizens of EU Member States holding management positions with a Moldovan branch, representative office or subsidiary of a legal entity seated in an EU Member State; and  
  2. Specialists, i.e. citizens of EU Member States acting for a legal entity seated in an EU Member State transferred to its branch, representative office or subsidiary in Moldova,

can be entitled to a provisional stay in Moldova for up to three years (which is a significant improvement against the default one-year period applicable to foreign workforce).

University graduate trainees, i.e. EU Member State nationals, holders of a diploma of higher education, employed by an EU-incorporated legal entity for at least one year and seconded to its branch, representative office or legal entity in Moldova, can be entitled to a provisional stay for up to one year without the right of extension.

Conclusion

While the amendments appear to streamline immigration rules for certain categories of EU professionals, it remains to be seen how the new rules will come into play.