The electricity situation is no better, since Moldova can no longer rely on the supply from a power station in Transdnistria
(a breakaway region of Moldova), owned by another energy giant close to the Russian government - United Electric Systems.
As the Soviet Union neared its end, Transdnistria
unilaterally declared independence from Moldova leading to a brief war in 1992 in which several hundred died.
In political terms, too, Ukraine has been offering what it sees as important gestures such as allowing EU access for its observers in the troubled Transdnistria
region of neighbouring Moldova, or signing up to EU declarations on Belarus and Moldova.
It is hoped that improving border and customs management, in particular on the Transdnistrian segment of the Moldova-Ukraine border, could help efforts to resolve the long-standing conflict over Moldova's breakaway Transdnistria
It is thought that better border controls could help efforts to resolve the long-standing conflict over Moldova's breakaway Transdnistria
An EU mission has been sent to the Moldova-Ukraine border to find out what the Union can do to improve border and customs controls there, notably as part of resolving the conflict over Moldova's breakaway Transdnistria
The EU is promising to help control and monitor the Moldova-Ukraine border as part of wider efforts to solve the conflict over Moldova's breakaway Transdnistria
Moldova's President Vladimir Voronin appealed for EU help in controlling and monitoring the Moldova-Ukraine border as part of efforts to solve the country's Transdnistria
conflict when he met EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana on June 7.
The common space for external security is supposed to set the scene in particular for enhanced joint efforts to resolve lingering 'frozen' conflicts in Europe (including Transdnistria
, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, and Nagorno-Karabakh) as well as boost cooperation on non-proliferation, crisis management and civil protection.
Mr Voronin first came to power promising to forge closer ties with Russia, but relations cooled in 2003 after he pulled out of a proposed deal to settle the Transdnistria
conflict amid criticisms that it would hand too much influence to Moscow.
Mr Lavrov said that Russia would be happy to hear any ideas from the EU side for solving the Transdnistria
conflict in Moldova, and was ready to cooperate with EU representatives in charge of conflict resolution.
They looked at possibilities for closer cooperation between the EU, Ukraine and Moldova with a view to resolving the latter's conflict involving the breakaway Transdnistria