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Brussels, 19 September 2011

Statement by Commissioner Štefan Füle following his meeting with Tigran Sargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia

I had a very fruitful discussion with Prime Minister Sargsyan. We agreed that both the EU and Armenia are committed to further enhance the relations within the renewed European Neighbourhood Policy. In ten days, the Eastern Partnership Summit, an important milestone in developing this policy, will reconfirm our mutual commitment and create in important momentum to bring the countries of Eastern Partnership even closer to the EU.

We took stock of the good progress made by Armenia in the context of the negotiations on the Association Agreement, including the preparations for Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area. More needs to be done and I encouraged Armenia to continue its efforts in this respect, building on the good progress reached in the recent months.

Mobility and people to people contacts is an important feature of our policy. In this context, I am pleased to announce that the Commission has just adopted the negotiating directives for the negotiations on the visa facilitation and readmission agreements with Armenia. It is our intention to launch negotiations as soon as the Council adopts the mandate.

I assured the Prime Minister that we are ready to continue providing our support to advance the ambitious agenda of internal reforms in the country. I am pleased to note that we have practically doubled our assistance to Armenia as of this year. Also the EU Advisory Group will continue to support the Armenian authorities in the implementation of the reforms in the core areas of the Association Agreement.

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