February 25, 2014 - 16:11 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The European Union Advisory Group to Armenia will terminate its activity in late 2014, with the EU continuing assistance to the republic in the sectors of close cooperation, according to Novosti-Armenia.
The EU Advisory Group was formed in 2008 to assist Armenia in advancing the implementation of the European Neighborhood Policy Action Plan.
As the head of the EU delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Traian Hristea said at the sitting of the Advisory Group, the work conducted in Armenia was effective, with progress in a number of sectors noted.
National Security Council Secretary Artur Baghdasaryan, in turn, welcomed the ongoing cooperation, with a number of reforms and joint programs testifying to its success.
Deputy parliament speaker Eduard Sharmazanov further noted the EU to be among Yerevan's key partners, expressing readiness to continue democracy-promoting reforms to the benefit of Armenian society.
He further listed political and legal reforms, the visa facilitation and readmission agreements among achievements of the Armenia-EU partnership.
According to the Q4 2013 report, the Advisory Group provided consultations on rule of law, migration, democratic governance, anti-trafficking, protection of witnesses, introduction of probation service in Armenia as well as anti-corruption measures.
Also, a concept on organization of visits and creation of an information center at the National Assembly were accomplished with the involvement of the Advisory Group.
In 2014, the Group will work to implement further reforms and strategic programs.
Armenia completed technical talks on a ‘deep and comprehensive free-trade agreement' (DCFTA) with the EU in July 2013 and it was set to be signed at a summit with the EU in late November. In addition to a free-trade deal, Armenia has been working towards the signing of an association agreement with the EU, a framework agreement on co-operation that is seen as a first step towards political integration with the EU.
During a Sept 3 meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Armenian leader Serzh Sargsyan said Armenia is ready to join Customs Union, with further plans to be involved in formation of the Eurasian Economic Union. Mr. Putin supported the initiative, vowing procedural assistance to Armenia.
A draft resolution on Armenia’s accession to the Customs Union and unified economic zone was approved at the Minsk-hosted Supreme Eurasian Economic Council meeting Dec 24. On Jan 23, Armenian government has approved the list of measures for joining the Customs Union.
“Armenia implemented almost half of the activities envisaged by the Customs Union accession roadmap,” Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan said earlier.