Georgian Prime Minister reiterates country's Euro-Atlantic integration

Photo: Georgian Prime Minister reiterates country's Euro-Atlantic integration / Georgia

Prime Minister of Georgia Bidzina Ivanishvili made a statement on Monday in Brussels on the priority of the country's integration into the EU and NATO, RIA News reported.

"The priority for the Georgian government is European integration, and integration into NATO, into Euro-Atlantic area. We will do everything possible to speed up this process," Ivanishvili said after a meeting with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso in Brussels

The parties discussed the negotiations on agreement between Georgia and EU on association, establishment of a bilateral free trade regime, as well as facilitating the visa regime for Georgian citizens traveling to the EU.

Ivanishvili expressed hope for signing of agreement on association, including a free trade agreement, before Vilnius summit and development of an action plan on visa liberalization with the EU.

The head of the European Commission, for his part, confirmed that the EU is committed to closer ties with Georgia. "This is a goal, which the European Union and Georgia want to achieve together," Barroso said.

The Eastern Partnership Program is a Polish-Swedish initiative under the EU Neighbourhood Policy aimed at improving EU relations with six former Soviet countries Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Belarus, Ukraine and Armenia. The programme envisages the allocation of 600 million euro to these countries until 2013 to strengthen state institutions, control borders and help small companies. Eastern Partnership does not provide opportunities for EU membership, but involves political and economic rapprochement with this regional organization, including visa facilitation and cooperation in the energy sector. The founding summit of Eastern Partnership was held on May 7 2009 in Prague.

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