Works are underway to establish a new joint committee between Azerbaijan and the European Union. Malena Mard, head of EU Baku office, told Trend Agency that the committee will monitor the implementation of agreements on visa facilitation between Azerbaijan and the EU, which came into force on 1 September.
“We want to make sure that the agreement is beneficial to both parties. I think that this step is important for further advancement,” Mard said. Regarding the prospects of cooperation between the sides, Mard added that the number of twinning-programs between Azerbaijan and the EU are growing.
“EU member states together with the Azerbaijani side are exploring ways of cooperation in the fields of tourism, pension system, as well as in the field of the environment and other spheres,” Mard said.
The EU and Azerbaijan are maintaining relations under the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, which was signed in 1996 and came into force in 1999. Since then the PCA has provided the legal framework for EU-Azerbaijan bilateral relations in the areas of political dialogue, trade, investment, economic, legislative and cultural cooperation.
Azerbaijan is also included in the EU program on “Eastern Partnership” adopted on the initiative of Poland and Sweden and approved at the EU summit in Brussels in 2008. The goal of the program is the rapprochement between the EU and Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Armenia, Moldova, Georgia, Belarus. The program envisages significant expansion of political interaction, larger integration of former Soviet republics into EU economy, increasing the volume of financial aid to them and strengthening the energy security.