Getting Closer: ‘Technical Procedures’ are Now All that Stands Between Georgian and Visa Liberalisation
A political decision has been made on the visa free regime between Georgia and the European Union (EU), and only technical procedures have yet to be finalised, Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said at the Eastern Partnership (EaP) Summit in Riga today.
Highlighting Georgia’s achievements, especially in the direction of visa liberalization, PM Garibashvili spoke at the Party of European Socialists (PES) forum attended by European Union high officials, including EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, and the Prime Ministers of Denmark and Sweden.
“Everyone agrees that in the past two years Georgia has made significant progress, including in the direction of visa liberalisation. We have made a very important leap in just six months. Unfortunately, the process should have started in 2010, at the same time Moldova started.” he said. “It is interesting, why our previous government did not start this process. Our Government started this process. Everyone agrees that the political decision has already been made and only technical procedures need to be finished. We hope that we will finalise these procedures by the end of this year and that our citizens will be able to travel visa free to Europe,” Georgian PM said.
PES President Sergei Stanishev also has high expectations of a positive outcome for Georgia at the EaP Summit: “I think there will be good news from the Summit for Georgia, because there is a strong political will to recommit Europeans engagement towards Georgia and the other countries which signed Association Agreement (AA). I also think that there is strong political understanding that the visa issue is very important for Georgia,” he said.