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Brussels, 5 December 2011

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

I had a fruitful and open discussion with Mr Tigran Sargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. Shortly after the visit of High Representative Ashton in Yerevan and the Cooperation Council meeting of 25 November, this meeting confirms the mutual commitment to reinforce links between the EU and Armenia.

Regarding  EU-Armenian relations, I expressed the view that the EU is very pleased to see new and ambitious reform efforts from Armenia, bringing together important priorities of EU-Armenia relations, including preparations for a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement. In this context we also discussed setting up the EU-Armenia Partnership for Reforms, which is being developed in line with the Joint Declaration we had signed with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Edward Nalbandian, during my visit to Armenia last April.

Today, I reiterated our commitment to support Armenia in advancing its ambitious reform strategy. I encouraged Armenia to remain committed to political reforms, particularly with regard to forthcoming elections.

I assured the Prime Minister that the EU is ready to organise an international event to mobilise international support for a sustained reform effort after Armenian Parliamentary elections in May 2012. In this context, I stressed the importance of ensuring that these elections will be conducted in line with international standards.

We also had a discussion on the Eastern Partnership agenda for 2012 and the road map, which is now being prepared to guide and monitor the implementation of the Eastern Partnership. In this context, I commended Armenia's commitment to the Eastern Partnership and its active involvement in Eastern Partnership initiatives.

We welcomed the recent signature of a Mobility Partnership with Armenia as an important step towards bringing European and Armenian citizens closer together. We also welcomed the recently adopted EU assistance for governance and the public sector in Armenia. We are also looking forward to start negotiations on visa facilitation and readmission agreements early in 2012.

We also mentioned the visit of the President of the Republic of Armenia, Mr Serzh Sargsyan, in Brussels early next year that should further build on the good momentum in our mutual relationship.

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