April 2015

Armenia Poised to Make Pivotal Decision About Further Cooperation With European Union

By Armen Grigoryan

European Union officials hope that among the outcomes of the upcoming May 2015 Eastern Partnership (EaP) summit in Riga will be a new and more flexible cooperation framework for redefining the EU’s relations with Armenia and other neighboring countries. Indeed, Latvia, which currently holds the rotating presidency of the EU Council of Ministers (January–June 2015), announced that one of its priorities would be a further development of the EaP with greater consideration given to the partner countries’ individual preferences (Azatutyun.am, November 27, 2014). After two rounds of consultations with Armenian officials, the head of the EU delegation to Armenia, Traian Hristea, expressed hope that a new framework for cooperation could be agreed upon. He also mentioned that establishing a united European economic area might be discussed at the Riga summit (Haykakan Zhamanak, February 16, 2015).

Kazakh FM Identifies Security, Connectivity and Diversification among Key Components of EU Strategy for Region under Review

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Kazakh Foreign Minister Erlan Idrissov addressed the March 30 French-German regional meeting of ambassadors, thanking them for their work on revising the EU Strategy for Central Asia and stressing the need for increased effort – and funding – for economic growth and integration and even calling for a “Central Asian Marshall Plan” to support regional development.