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Ridha
Tekaia
Preedintele Asociaiei Investitorilor Strini din moldova

President of the Foreign Investors Association in Moldova

Moldova este o destinaie pentru


investiii de lung durat
Cunoscut drept preedinte al
Mobiasbanc Groupe Socit
Gnrale, domnul Ridha Tekaia
a venit n Moldova din Frana,
la nceputul anului 2012. Dup
un an de activitate la Chiinu,
a fost ales preedinte al
Asociaiei Investitorilor Strini
(AIS), pentru a-i reprezenta pe
cei mai importani i mai longevivi investitori din ara noastr. Avnd n vedere rolul su n
mediul de afaceri moldovenesc,
l-am ntrebat pe domnul Tekaia
care sunt evoluiile n acest domeniu i impresiile sale despre
Moldova.

Mobiasbanc Groupe
Socit Gnrale
2012.
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The president of Mobiasbanca Groupe Socit Gnrale,


Mr. Ridha Tekaia came to Moldova from France, in January
2012. After one year of activity
in Chisinau he was elected to
the position of President of the
Foreign Investors Association in
Moldova (FIA). Thus, today, he
represents the most important,
active, and long-standing foreign investors in this country.
Considering his role in the business environment, we asked
Mr. Tekaia about the developments in this field, the FIA and
his impression of Moldova.

July-August | Altitude | 57

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Domnule preedinte, suntei practic


o portavoce a investitorilor strini
din Moldova. Care este misiunea
asociaiei pe care o conducei?
Asociaia Investitorilor Strini reunete
cele mai mari companii cu capital strin
din Moldova, cu o pondere substanial
de investiii, dar i cu o perspectiv ndelungat n aceast ar. AIS numr companii care reprezint aproape
tot spectrul de activiti din Moldova agricol, industrial, telecomunicaii,
distribuie, audit, juridic i bancar.
Asociaiei i revine misiunea de a reprezenta interesele tuturor acestor investitori, pentru a putea activa ntr-un mediu
de afaceri corect. Dup alegerea mea n
funcia de preedinte AIS, descopr zilnic ct de plin de responsabiliti este
aceast misiune, de a oferi suport ntrun mediu de afaceri ca cel moldovenesc.

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Cum poate influena asociaia pe


care o conducei evoluia mediului de
afaceri din Moldova?
Cooperarea dintre membrii asociaiei
i autoriti se refer la diferite aspecte, cum sunt cel legislativ, codul muncii,
etc. Periodic, experii companiilor membre fac diferite propuneri ctre autoriti pentru mbuntirea mediului de
afaceri. Aceste sugestii, odat acceptate,
msurile luate de autoriti ulterior in-

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58 | Altitude | July-August

Mr. Tekaia, you are basically, the voice of


the foreign investors in Moldova. What is
the mission of the FIA?
The Foreign Investors Association groups
together the biggest Moldovan companies
with foreign majority shareholders, who have
made a significant and substantial investment in Moldovas economy and are willing
to have a sound and long term development
in this country.
FIAs members represent almost all sectors of
activity in Moldova Agribusiness, Industry,
Telecommunications, Distribution, Audit &
Legal Services, as well as the Banking sector.
The FIA mission is to represent the interests
of all those sectors, by contributing to a comprehensive and fair business environment. I
myself, as President of Mobiasbanca Groupe
Socit Gnrale, and having been elected
Prsident of FIA last February, discover, day
after day, how big is the mission and the responsibilities of the FIA of supporting doing
business in Moldova generally.

flueneaz toate companiile din bran,


indiferent de originea sau mrimea capitalului. Suntem n contact permanent cu
autoritile guvernamentale, pentru a le
oferi opiniile i sugestile noastre. AIS va
aniversa n curnd 10 ani de activitate,
iar n toat aceast perioad am avut o
colaborare bun cu acestea. Propunerile
noastre au fost luate n calcul de fiecare dat. Am stabilit deja o relaie foarte
bun cu noul premier, Iurie Leanc, i
echipa sa guvernamental. Sunt destul
de optimist n privina cooperrii ulterioare pentru mbuntirea mediului de
afaceri din Moldova. Pentru a atrage mai
muli investitori strini trebuie ca cei
existeni deja pe pia s fie mulumii.
Fiecare dintre membrii AIS este un ambasador moldovean pentru comunitatea
internaional.
E loc de mai multe investiii strine
n Moldova? Ce le recomandai
strinilor care vor s dezvolte afaceri aici?
Cu certitudine rmne loc de investiii n
Moldova. Reconstrucia marilor sectoare,
cum sunt drumurile, apeductele, sistemul de sntate sau cel energetic, nu ar
fi reuit fr investiiile strine directe
i fr standardele din afar n anumite
domenii. Fiecare nou investiie, inclusiv
cele strine, influeneaz calitatea vieii
moldovenilor, dar i activitatea


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only the FIA members but benefit all the economic operators irrespective of their size or
the origin of their shareholders. We are in permanent contact with the Government, sharing our respective opinions, ideas and suggestions. FIA will soon celebrate its 10 year
anniversary and, during all this period, the
cooperation with the administration has been
good and constructive. Our proposals were
considered each time it was possible. I have
already established a very good relationship
with the new Prime Minister, Iurie Leanca,
and his government and I am quite optimistic on our successful future cooperation in
improving the framework for all the operators and economic agents who are present in
Moldova. The key element in attracting more
foreign investors is having satisfied existing
investors. Each of our members is a Moldovan
Ambassador in the international community.
Is there room for more investments in
Moldova? What would you recommend
to foreigners who would like to develop a
business here?
Of course it is.There are so many things that
still need to be done in Moldova: a huge reconstruction effort, the development of various sectors, the building of the infrastructure
like roads, water supply, health, and energy
infrastructure. All these activities could not be
managed without the support of foreign direct
investments and also without foreign competencies, in some specific areas.

How can the FIA influence the business


environment in Moldova?
The FIA members are cooperating with each
other in various fields like legal framework,
taxes, labour code, and others by putting
in common their respective experts in order
to make concrete proposals to the concerned
authorities with a view to improving the business framework. Our suggestions concern not
July-August | Altitude | 59

Moldova
is a target
to invest and
stay for long

companiilor i a economiei n ansamblu. n consecin, transferul de tehnologii i creterea PIB-ului fac posibil atingerea standardelor internaionale pentru
a exporta produsele moldoveneti.
Nu am o recomandare anume pentru
poteniali investitori strini, dar sunt cteva sfaturi care merit luate n seam.
S nu se grbeasc, pentru c Moldova
este o ar mic i nu te poi atepta la
un profit imediat, dar este o destinaie
pentru investiii de lung durat. Unii
membri AIS sunt n aceast ar de peste 10 ani. S aib rbdare mediul de
afaceri nu este ntotdeauna facil i corect, dar suntem n legtur permanent cu autoritile pentru a redresa
orice situaie. Soluiile nu vin uor, aa
cum i-ar dori toi oamenii de afaceri,
dar evoluiile se vd n fiecare zi. Reformele care se deruleaz sunt ghidate de
standardele Uniunii Europene. Exist
condiii pentru investiiile n cadrul zonelor economice libere, care fac obiectul unor faciliti fiscale, dar acesta nu
trebuie s fie singurul stimul pentru
a investi. Moldova este un pod ntre
Uniunea European i Comunitatea Statelor Independente, cu o pia de 3,8
milioane de oameni, dar care ofer acces la o alt pia, de aproape 800 de
milioane. De asemenea, exist acces la
proiectele subvenionate de instituiile
internaionale. Corporaia Finaciar
Internaional (IFC), Banca European
pentru Investiii (EIB), Banca European pentru Reconstrucie i Dezvoltare
(EBRD), Banca Olandez pentru Dez60 | Altitude | July-August

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Each project, even if led by a foreign investor, will bring profit rapidly to the Moldovan citizens first, and then to the countrys economic agents and to the overall
economy through technology transfer, GDP
growth, and by reaching the international
standards enabling Moldova to export its
production.
I dont have a specific recommendation for
the potential foreign investors. But I have a
few pieces of advice. They should not rush.
Moldova is a small country and we should
not expect a quick return, therefore it is a
country where we should invest and stay for
long. Some of our FIA members have been
present in the country for more than 10
years.They should be patient. The business
environment is not always easy and fair but
we have a good communication channel
with the authorities, who are willing to improve the situation. It is not always as fast
as we (the economic players) would like but
it is improving every day. The ongoing reforms have a certain convergence with the
EU standards. Several measures support
the investments, like the Free Economic
Zones, with dedicated tax incentives, but
this should not be the only driving force for
the decision to invest. Moldova is a bridge
between the EU and CIS zones. Thus, apart
from the local market, with 3.8 million inhabitants, we could easily reach another
market of almost 800 million more people.
There is easy access to project financing in
specific fields like Agriculture, or Energy,
which are supported by international institutions like the International Financial
Corporation (IFC), the European Invest-

voltare (FMO) ofer finanri n condiii


speciale pentru Agricultur sau Energie,
prin intermediul bncilor comerciale.
Principala condiie este un plan de afaceri viabil, pentru care s existe i o consiliere local.



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Dup 1 an petrecut la Chiinu, ce


prere v-ai fcut despre oamenii i
locurile acestei ri?
Este o ar linitit o impresie ce se
bazeaz mai degrab pe sentimente, nu
neaprat datorit locurilor pe care leam vizitat. Vezi numai oameni relaxai,
peste tot exist parcuri, cafenele, sate
pitoreti. Nu se observ stresul o particularitate specific stilului de via din
Moldova. Un exemplu fericit poate fi o
ieire la natur cu prietenii, savurnd un
vin gustos.

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Dup attea experiene culinare pe


mai multe continente, ce v las gura
ap n buctria moldoveneasc?
Plcinta este cea mai mare noutate pentru mine, dar am descoperit cu plcere i
foile de varz umplute (cu orez i carne
, n.r.) numite glute ori sarmale.
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Venind din Frana, care este o ar a
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vinurilor, ce impresie v-au fcut vin .
urile moldoveneti?
, Moldova are o varietate impresionant
. , de vinuri. i poate lua muli ani s
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ment Bank (EIB), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and
the Dutch development bank FMO and
the funds are distributed through the commercial banks. All you have to do is to draw
up an appropriate business plan in cooperation with local financial advisors.
After a year in Chisinau, what is your
opinion about the people and places of
this country?
It is a peaceful country, it is more a matter
of feeling than a matter of discovering specific places. When you look around, people
are relaxed, there are parks everywhere, coffee terraces, and the countryside. I dont see
stressed people around and this is an important characteristic of the Moldovan lifestyle.
With a few trees, some friends, barbecues
and some nice wine, you enjoy being here!
You have had many culinary experiences
in various countries. What do you find
to be the tastiest dish in the Moldovan
cuisine?
Placinta is obviously new for me, but I discovered and appreciate the stuffed leaves
called Galuste or Sarmale.
Considering that you are coming from
France, a country of wines, what do you
think about the wines made in Moldova?
You have a very wide and impressive offer
of different kinds of wine. It will take

July-August | Altitude | 61

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o descoperi n ntregime. Pentru nceput,
am ndrgit vinurile Merlot i Cabernet
Sauvignon. Am reuit chiar s redescopr
vinurile Carmenere, care au disprut din
Bordeaux acum muli ani din cauza filoxerei (insect parazit care distruge rdcina
i frunzele viei de vie n.r.) i care au reaprut acum n Chile i n Moldova.
Unde v petrecei timpul liber n Moldova?
Aa cum spuneam mai sus, zonele rurale
ofer foarte multe oportuniti turistice,
un exemplu fiind mnstirile. Dar cel mai
mult din timpul meu liber l mpart ntre
partidele de golf i cele de squash.

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many years to go around it. I started by


having some of my preferred wines, like
Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon. I even rediscovered the Carmenere which disappeared
from Bordeaux long time ago, being devastated by Phylloxera [a pest that destroys the
root and leaves of the grapevine] and which
is produced nowadays in Chile and Moldova.
Where do you spend your leisure time in
Moldova?
As I said, the countryside offers huge opportunities and places to visit, as well as
some monasteries to discover. But my leisure time is mainly spent in Golf or squash
clubs.

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