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Official News

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Prime Minister sums up outcome of his visit to Brussels





“To succeed in multilateral relations, including in Europe, it is important to have precedents of successful bilateral relations,” President of Belgian Parliament Andre Flao said after the meeting with Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan in Brussels.

In this context, he made a point of Armenian Prime Minister’s visit to the Kingdom of Belgium during which a broad range of issues relating to the furtherance of bilateral relations was discussed, including possibilities for boosting inter-parliamentary exchanges. Mr. Flao suggested activating contacts within the Armenia-Belgium inter-parliamentary cooperation group. “Considering the close cooperation and friendly ties existing between the two countries, Armenia may be supported by Belgium in its relations with the European Union,” he added.

Summing up the outcome of his 3-day working visit, Tigran Sargsyan said that supportive of Armenian reforms, the European partners had given assurances of continued technical and financial assistance to the government of Armenia which in his words is crucial to our country.

“We have started discussing the need for implementing new programs with a focus on tax and customs policies where we intend to carry out a pilot project that has already been tested in other countries, and we want to have one carried out in Armenia as well,” the Prime Minister said adding that on the one hand, this implies providing technical assistance and, on the other, establishing a buffer fund to safeguard against such risks as may arise during the implementation of reforms and ensure macroeconomic stability.

“At the same time, the process of reforms will be reinvigorated in the political, economic and democratic aspects. We have our European partners’ full support in this respect.”

According to the Prime Minister, what matters most is that the Armenian side managed to give a full idea of those serious challenges faced in 2009 due to the global crisis. The need has arisen to address the existing problems and push ahead with the projected programs.

“It is also important that our European partners understand our approach to the settlement of both Armenia-Turkey relations and the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” Tigran Sargsyan noted.

Concerning the former, the Prime Minister reminded that Armenia expressed readiness to ratify the protocols as soon as they had been signed. It is now up to the Turkish side to take a decision, though the situation in that country makes us think that the matter will be taken up only after the general elections due this summer. There seems to be a new trend in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, namely by considering that there is no alternative to the peaceful settlement, the international community should send clear indications to the two countries that the use of force is inadmissible.

At the same time, the international organizations and the European Union should cut clear on their vision of such sanctions as may be applied in case of recourse to military operations. “I believe that such a political stand on the part of the European Union will help lead the talks to their logical conclusion,” the head of the Armenian government declared.

The meeting with the head of the Belgian Parliament was preceded by one had earlier today with Commissioner for Tax and Customs Affairs Algirdas Semeta who was briefed on the reforms already completed and underway in Armenia’s tax and customs administrations, as well as on our country assistance requirements.
A day before - on March 16 - the Prime Minister met with the members of the board of “Armenia’s European Friends” association.

Later today the Prime Minister-led government was back to Yerevan.
 

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