The Eastern Partnership celebrates its 10th anniversary in Brussels
“We can say that the Eastern Partnership is a successful programme. We are now at a moment when we should chart a direction for the future and define what the programme should be like for the next ten years to come,” Minister Jacek Czaputowicz said at a conference convened to discuss the Eastern Partnership’s (EP) achievements and challenges.
At the high-level conference held in Brussels to mark the 10th anniversary of the Eastern Partnership, the Polish foreign policy chief outlined measures that aim to enhance and consolidate cooperation between the EU and EP countries. They focus on three key areas: law approximation, sectoral cooperation and institutionalization. Minister Czaputowicz’s proposals included establishing a secretariat, launching a rotating EP presidency and creating a Regional Economic Area for the Partnership. “The EP countries are not the same. They have different aspirations for the level of their cooperation with the European Union. But the Eastern Partnership reflects an approach that can bring benefits for all,” said Minister Czaputowicz. He went on to say that ten years into the Eastern Partnership, it has the potential to forge closer links between the European Union and its eastern neighbours. “Together we should devise an ambitious political agenda that will make the Eastern Partnership attractive for all its members and specifically for ordinary citizens,” urged the minister.
In Brussels, Poland’s top diplomat and Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius of Lithuania presented the winners of a student contest for the best essay on the future of the Eastern Partnership with honorary diplomas. The contest was a joint Polish-Lithuanian initiative. Six laureates, one for each EP country, were selected out of almost 70 contest entries. During the ceremony, Minister Czaputowicz congratulated the winners and explained the idea behind the contest: “We wanted the debate on the future of the Eastern Partnership to fully embrace the dreams and aspirations of young people.”
MFA Press Office
Photo Tymon Markowski / MFA