State secretaries’ meeting of the Nordic Baltic Eight focuses on the Eastern Partnership and international policy issues

23 October 2013, Last updated at, 12:23 EEST
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author: URM

On 21-22 October in Stockholm, the Lithuanian Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Andrius Krivas attended a State Secretaries’ meeting of the Nordic Baltic Eight (NB8), which discussed future cooperation of the NB8 diplomatic missions and states, the European Neighbourhood Policy, and the Eastern Partnership Summit in November in Vilnius.

Representatives of the Nordic and Baltic countries also discussed relations with Russia, aspects of regional energy policy, and global policy issues: the situation in Syria, Iran, Afghanistan and the Middle East peace process.

According to A.Krivas, representatives of all eight states strongly support objectives of the EU’s Eastern Partnership Policy and hope that the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, including its Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area, will be signed at the Eastern Partnership Summit in November in Vilnius – provided that a number of benchmarks are fulfilled by Ukraine. The NB8 diplomats also hope that the outcomes of the Eastern Partnership Summit will include initialling Association Agreements with Moldova and Georgia with an aim to finally sign them in 2014.

This year, the Nordic and Baltic countries have implemented a number of new initiatives to build closer relationship between the region and its neighbouring countries.

Sweden’s interim report on the NB8 activities was also presented at the NB8 State Secretaries’ meeting. The report reviews the NB8 cooperation in 2013.

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