Azerbaijan and EC Defining Directions of ENP Indicative Program for 2008
Azerbaijan, Baku / corr I.Khalilova / The Azerbaijan Government presented to the European Commission an indicative program for 2007 for Azerbaijan within the framework of the European Neighborhood Policy (ENP) program with the budget of €19mln, Asgar Alakbarov, the head of the Investment Policy Department of the Azerbaijan Ministry of Economic Development, said.
Under the program €5mln is allocated for twining program and €14mln for budget support. The funds will be spent by mid-2008, Alakbarov said.
Five projects are expected to be realized under the twinning program. Technical tasks on improvement of standardization system (for Standardization, Metrology, and Patent Agency), expertise of quality of foodstuffs and seafood (for State Service on Control over the Consumer Market at the Economic Development Market) are under development. Each sector will receive technical assistance in the amount of €1mln.
The European Commission has defined the budget of the program for 2008 in the amount of €21-22mln. At present the EU is currently discussing assistance in this direction.
A draft indicative program for Azerbaijan in 2007-2010 is under the discussion with the EU. The total budget of the program is €92mln.
The priority directions of ENP action plane for Azerbaijan, adopted in Brussels in November 2006, are the strengthening of democracy in the country, improvement of business and investment climate, support to sustainable economic development, adjusting the economic legislation and management practices, strengthening of coprtaio between the EU and Azerbaijan in the energy and transport sectors, regional cooperation, cooperation in the border governance, etc.
Under the ENP, the European Commission plans to provide technical aid in three priority directions - right management, democratic elections, improvement of legislation; economical reforms, financial sector, regional development; and energy, transport and infrastructure.