Tuesday, May 21 2019 17:39
Marianna Mkrtchyan

Mogherini: has been and will continue be the biggest supporter of the  Armenian government`s ambitious reform plan

Mogherini: has been and will continue be the biggest supporter of the  Armenian government`s ambitious reform plan

ArmInfo. The European Union published a report on the processes in Armenia and the EU-RA relations from June 2018 to early May 2019.  According to a report  published on the organization's website, the report will be presented  on the eve of the EU-Armenia Partnership Council meeting scheduled  for June 13.

"The European Union has today issued a report on developments in  Armenia and EU- Armenia relations between June 2018 and early May  2019. The report comes ahead of the EU-Armenia Partnership Council on  13 June. It finds that Armenia has stepped up its efforts to  reinforce and enhance its partnership with the EU, and that Armenia  consistently acknowledged the significant role the EU can play in the  smooth implementation of the country's reform agenda. However, the  reform process remains at an early stage. The government's roadmap  for the implementation of the EU-Armenia Comprehensive and Enhanced  Partnership Agreement will be an important instrument in advancing  reform plans,  "a statement published on the EU website says.

"The European Union has been and will continue be the biggest  supporter of the Armenian government's ambitious reform plan, which  is consolidating democracy, the rule of law and promoting human  rights in the country", said the High Representative of the Union for  Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European  Commission, Federica Mogherini. "Armenia is an important partner for  the European Union, and together we are focussed on implementing our  wide- reaching bilateral agreement, as well as delivering concrete  results within the Eastern Partnership. We always keep firmly in mind  that our aim is bringing tangible benefits to our citizens."

"The EU and Armenia are strong partners and we stand ready to support  concrete reforms, including in the area of justice and education,  which are key for the people", said the Commissioner for European  Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn.  "The swift implementation of the Comprehensive and Enhanced  Partnership Agreement offers new economic opportunities for all  Armenian citizens."

After the political changes in Armenia last year, early parliamentary  elections were held in December 2018. The EU was the largest single  contributor to the elections, providing technical equipment and  supporting actions in favour of democracy and civic participation.  According to the International Elections Observation Mission, the  elections respected fundamental freedoms and enjoyed broad public  trust. In addition, the Government highlighted the need for  independence, accountability and efficiency of the judiciary. In  September 2018, the EU and Armenia launched the EU- Armenia Strategic  Policy Dialogue in the Justice Sector. The EU stands ready to support  reform in this crucial field.

Total EU-Armenia trade increased by 15% over the past year reaching a  total value of 1.1 billion euro. Armenia benefits from the EU's  Generalised Scheme of Preferences plus (GSP+), which is a special  incentive arrangement for sustainable development and good  governance. More than 96% of EU imports eligible for GSP+ preferences  from Armenia entered the EU with zero duties in 2017. The extension  of the core Trans European Transport Network (TEN-T) to Armenia was  finalised in November 2018. The Indicative TEN-T Investment Action  Plan was published in January 2019 and also includes road safety as  one of its priorities.  An EU-Armenia Education Policy Dialogue was  inaugurated in March 2019 to support the reform in the education  sector. Thanks to the support of the Erasmus+ capacity building  projects, Armenian universities have been able to upgrade their  administrative and organisational structures and modernise study  courses. More than 2,700 students and university professors have  benefited from EU-Armenia academic exchanges and mobility projects  through Erasmus+ since 2015. At the end of 2018, a new  'EU4Innovation' programme worth 23 million euro was launched aimed at  matching the skills of university graduates with the requirements of  the labour market. The programme will create a EU4Innovation Centre  for universities and an EU Convergence Centre to bring together  universities and private sector, complemented by an incubator for  technology start-ups.

The EU is the biggest provider of financial support and a key reform  partner in Armenia. The EU stands ready to continue engaging in  Armenia and provide support through political dialogue, financial and  technical assistance, to support the Armenian government ambitious  reforms for the benefit of the citizens of Armenia and EU- Armenia  cooperation," the EU said in a statement posted on the organization's  website. 

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