Raul de Luzenberger: EU is committed to enhancing relations with Armenia

Raul de Luzenberger: EU is committed to enhancing relations with Armenia

PanARMENIAN.Net - Poland-hosted Eastern Partnership summit, will be an opportunity to renew the political commitment of all participating countries to the key objectives of the Partnership. It will review progress made in the implementation of the Eastern Partnership over the last two years based on shared values of democracy and human rights, according to the head of the European Commission Delegation to Armenia.

As Ambassador Raul de Luzenberger stated in a conversation with a PanARMENIAN.Net reporter, “as the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission Ms. Ashton said, "In Poland, we will leave our partners in no doubt that the EU's acknowledgement of their European aspirations and their European choice goes hand in hand with our expectations for their commitment to progressing towards deep and sustainable democracy. Our Eastern partners are at different stages along this path, and our role is to give practical support to that process of their political association and economic integration with the EU. Following the Review of the Neighbourhood policy undertaken by myself and Stefan Fule, a key element is that the EU will apply more conditionality in its actions, linking them more closely to the efforts made by our partners towards reform. This means more financial support, closer political cooperation and deeper economic integration for those partners who have embarked on deep reforms. It is what we call ‘more for more’. We are all committed to making the Warsaw Summit a success, and to giving renewed momentum to building the closest possible relations with our Eastern partners and neighbours."

The Summit will also decide on the next steps to ensure continued progress toward deeper political association and economic integration with the European Union based on Eastern European countries’ sustainable reform effort. In this respect, progress towards Deep and Comprehensive Free trade Areas and in the area of mobility and enhanced sector cooperation, notably in the field of transport, energy and agriculture, will represent key deliverables. The Summit should emphasise that the Eastern Partnership is based on common values and principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the rule of law. The EaP Summit would also underline the central role of civil society in pursuing the goals of the Eastern Partnership and show the possibilities of creating new instruments such as the European Endowment for Democracy and Civil Society Facility. ”

As the Ambassador further noted, “the EU is committed to further enhancing relations with Armenia in the framework of the Eastern Partnership. Good progress has taken place in the context of the EU-Armenia Association Agreement negotiations, and Armenia has already accomplished substantial preparatory work necessary to start negotiations on the EU-Armenia Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area and should continue its efforts in this direction. There is also good progress regarding enhancing mobility between Armenia and the EU. Talks on a mobility partnership are well advanced and the European Commission has recently adopted draft negotiating directives for the negotiations on visa facilitation and readmission agreements. Once the Council approves these directives, negotiations with Armenia can start.”

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