The Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement [CEPA] signed with the EU was discussed at the joint sitting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Foreign Relations and the Committee on European Integration. The EU Ambassador to Armenia Piotr Switalski was also present at the discussion.
Deputy Foreign Minister Karen Nazaryan presented the process of negotiations and the structure of the new agreement.
He said that the agreement will contribute to closer economic cooperation as well.
Republican MP Mihran Hakobyan asked, whether when the EU member states will ratify this agreement.
Deputy Minister answered: “We deal with 27 EU member states. One of them, Estonia, has already ratified. We are still working on the other directions”. Karen Nazaryan said that even if it does not happen completely, after the National Assembly ratification the Armenian side will notify the European side, after which we can start the temporary implementation of the agreement on the first day of the second month.
“It is about the implementation of a maximum of 80 percent of the agreement, which will be a very ambitious and binding process. We attach great importance to the process of ratification by EU member states. Targeted discussions and activities are being carried out by our embassies with the member states as well as accredited EU member states. If everything goes according to the schedule, the National Assembly will ratify, and after June 1 notice, we can start the implementation of the agreement”.
Naira Zohrabyan said that European Parliament will hold elections in 2019, so they expect that by summer of 2019 EU countries will ratify, within the second week of May, the Council of Europe will touch upon the document.
Karen Nazaryan said that during the meetings with them the EU partners assure that the ratification process will take place quite quickly.
“Tsarukyan” faction MP Luiza Sargsyan inquired whether how much the total volume of finances was. Nazaryan said that the EU will surely have a part in the implementation of the provisions of this agreement, there is a “Common Assistance Framework”, which apportions all financial support for several years, 2017-2020.
Karen Nazaryan said that it was about up to 176 million euros, which will be apportioned annually. The Deputy Prime Minister has been involved in this issue.