EU, Azerbaijan mull new partnership agreement
Negotiations on a new bilateral agreement have been held between Azerbaijan and the European Union (EU).
The EU delegation at the talks in Baku is headed by the representative of the European Commission for Trade, Petros Sourmelis.
Speaking at the meeting with the participation of Azerbaijani and EU officials at the Baku Business Center, Minister of Economy Shahin Mustafayev underlined that Azerbaijan-EU relations are developing, important documents such as Partnership and Cooperation, Visa and Readmission Agreements, Action Plan under the European Neighborhood Policy and the Eastern Partnership Initiative have been signed.
It was noted that Azerbaijan and the EU successfully cooperate in various fields, including in the energy sector. Azerbaijan, as the initiator and active participant of such large projects as Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and the Southern Gas Corridor, is a reliable energy partner of the European Union.
The main place in the foreign trade turnover of Azerbaijan is occupied by the countries of the European Union.
Stressing that Azerbaijan is interested in continually expanding its cooperation with the European Union, Mustafayev recalled that the new agreement was announced by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the President of the European Union in 2017, noting that negotiations on the agreement are being continued, meetings and video conferences are being organized.
The minister noted that the new bilateral Agreement between Azerbaijan and the European Union will be important for the development of relations.
Deputy Executive Director for Europe and Central Asia of the European Union’s External Relations Service European Union, Luke Devin shared his views on the expansion of relations and the new draft bilateral agreement, stressed that the document would contribute to the development of cooperation between the EU and Azerbaijan.
The new agreement should replace the 1996 partnership and cooperation agreement and should better take account of the shared objectives and challenges the EU and Azerbaijan face today. The agreement will follow the principles endorsed in the 2015 review of the European Neighborhood Policy and will offer a renewed basis for political dialogue and mutually beneficial cooperation between the EU and Azerbaijan.