New EU-Armenia deal not directed against third parties – Piotr Switalski

This Comprehensive and Extended Partnership Agreement between Armenia and the European Union is not directed against any third party, Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Switalski told a press conference at the Media Center.

Moreover, he said, several elements in the agreement will be beneficial for other partners of Armenia

“The European Union is not pursuing any selfish goals. By negotiating this agreement we didn’t think of us alone. Therefore, if this agreement is applied well, if it brings the desired changes in terms of governance, institutions, economy, competition, business, trade, energy, transport, people-to-people contacts, we do not intend to monopolize the benefits,” Ambassador Switalski said.

According to him, the agreement is very important for Armenia and the European Union. “It consolidate the basis of relations, enlarges the scope of relations. I hope all Armenian citizens will be able to benefit from this new chapter in relations. The agreement creates new opportunities, opens new doors, but the central thing is to ensure its good implementation,” Mr. Switalsi said. He’s confident the agreement will bring a good future to Armenia and the European Union.

The Head of the EU Delegation said the EU will be providing very concrete financial assistance to implement the agreement. “We are going to increase the development aid to Armenia by 25 percent. If applied well, the agreement will bring real change, real benefit to Armenian citizens,” he noted.

Speaking about the Karabakh issue, Ambassador Switalski said “the position of the European Union is very clear.” “The EU is totally in favor of peaceful settlement, in favor of the work of the OSCE mask Group Co-Chairs and is ready to contribute to the process of confidence-building and post-conflict rehabilitation. “We believe that the settlement of the conflict is important for the stability of Armenia, the region as a whole and for stability of the European neighborhood,” he said.

Regarding to the agreement’s provisions on Armenia’s Nuclear Power Plant, Mr. Switalski said: “The agreement stipulates our readiness to continue cooperation with Armenia in the field of energy. The EU is poised step up assistance to Armenia to develop green energy, to develop independent sources of energy, to liberalize the energy market and make the prices more affordable to citizens.”

“Concerning nuclear energy, for a number of years the European Union has been supporting Armenia to make power stations safe, to ensure the good functioning of the remaining reactors. The agreement doesn’t contain any elements that would impose anything on Armenia, but it is true that every reactor has expiration date, the EU says we are ready to work with Armenia to find an effective solution, a solution that all Armenian citizens would like,” Piotr Switalski noted.

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