Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept. 12 / Trend S.Aghayeva /
EU Special Representative for South Caucasus Philippe Lefort arrives in Azerbaijan today, EU Delegation in Baku told Trend on Wednesday.
Lefort's official meetings with the authorities will begin tomorrow. During the visit, EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus will hold meetings with the Azerbaijani President, Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, as well as in the Ministries of Economic Development, Education, and Health.
Lefort was appointed to this post in August last year.
Relations between the EU and Azerbaijan are being carried out under the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement which was signed in 1996 and came into force in 1999. In 2009, the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the EU Commission issued a mandate to start negotiations on the conclusion of bilateral association agreements of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia with the EU. These agreements will be a new practical instrument to replace the bilateral action plans.
Azerbaijan is also included in the EU program Eastern Partnership, adopted at the initiative of Poland and Sweden, and approved at the EU summit in Brussels in 2008. The Eastern Partnership is aimed at the political and economic rapprochement of six post-Soviet states - Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine and Belarus and the EU. The program provides a significant increase in the level of political engagement, broad integration of the former Soviet republics in the EU economy, increase in the amount of financial assistance and strengthening of energy security.