The EU-Armenia Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was signed on November 24 in the margins of the Eastern Partnership Summit.
The ceremony became one of the focal points of the EU’s Eastern Partnership summit that brought together the leaders of six Eastern European and South Caucasus nations in the Belgian capital.
“The agreement we have signed today (Nov 24) will have a real impact on people’s lives, a positive one, both in Armenia and in the European Union,” EU High Representative/Vice-President, Federica Mogherini said at the ceremony of signing if a Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with Armenia. “It will allow us to strengthen our cooperation on security matters, in particular through increasing resilience; to improve the investment climate; stimulating growth and jobs; and to find environmentally friendly solutions to help communities prosper and businesses grow,” Mogherini said.
“It has been a long-term objective of ours to have an ambitious agreement in place that better reflects the priorities of our partnership with Armenia, to address the challenges we face and to make the most of the opportunities available to us through even stronger cooperation,” she added.
The Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement will strengthen political dialogue and set a solid basis for the continuation of economic and social reforms. Some of the concrete ways in which the new agreement is expected to bring added value to citizens both in Europe and Armenia are:
A better investment climate: A better regulatory environment will improve the business climate and investment opportunities for Armenian and EU companies, encouraging Armenian companies to sell more goods and services to the EU and the EU companies to open subsidiaries in Armenia, which will contribute to economic growth and job creation.
A more empowered civil society: an independent civil society composed of Armenian and EU organizations will be set up to monitor the implementation of the agreement.
A safer living environment: The EU and Armenia will increase their cooperation in preventing and fighting crime, including terrorism.
Fairer and more transparent procurement procedures: Clearer rules on publication of tenders and review procedures will help to prevent corruption and discrimination.
Improved product safety and consumer protection: Armenia will seek to reduce differences with regard to EU standards to further protect the health and safety of consumers.
A cleaner, healthier environment: The EU will support Armenia’s adoption of EU environmental standards as well as its development of clean sources of energy.
“Through this agreement, the EU-Armenia partnership will continue to be anchored and based on our shared common principles and strong commitment to democracy, human rights and the rule of law,” Mogherini stated.