On 31 May 2019, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Edgars Rinkēvičs, took part in the Eastern Partnership Conference held by the Baltic Assembly in Vilnius, and he delivered remarks in a panel titled “Eastern Partnership: A Window of Opportunity in 2025-2028 to build European Perspective for EU Association Countries during EU Presidencies of Poland, Lithuania and Latvia”.
“We can be duly proud of the Eastern Partnership’s achievements over the past ten years. The Eastern Partnership should remain a single platform for cooperation with all six partner countries – Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Belarus, Azerbaijan, and Armenia,” Edgars Rinkēvičs underlined.
The Foreign Minister expressed Latvia’s support for a deeper integration of the European Union (EU) with the partner countries that have made significant progress in implementing reforms and expressed their willingness to move closer to the EU. “Latvia has a principled position – all European nations who are ready and willing to fulfil the membership criteria, should have an open door. In our view, the EU membership perspective for the Eastern Partnership countries is achievable. Hence Latvia supports the partners in their ambitions of moving closer to the EU,” stressed the Minster.
Edgars Rinkēvičs expressed a view that the Eastern Partnership countries should be encouraged to continue the reform process, which is a precondition for their economic growth and modernization. The reforms must be visible on the ground, strengthen state institutions and bring tangible and sustainable benefits to all people. At the same time, the EU should take note of the Eastern partner countries’ aspirations and render practical and financial support to their reforms.
The conference brought together participants from the Eastern Partnership countries, members of EU Member State parliaments and governments, diplomats, researchers, and experts.
The Baltic Assembly (BA) is an international organisation for cooperation among the parliaments of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
In 2019, Latvia is presiding at the Baltic Assembly. The priorities set by the Latvian presidency of the Baltic Assembly are a comprehensive approach to security and defence, the strengthening of interconnections of the Baltic States to Europe in the field of energy, transport and infrastructure, and developing a region of growth and competitiveness.
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