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EU feeding Georgia with “small carrots”2011-03-29 23:11
Having encouraged six former Soviet republics with a doubtful initiative called Eastern Partnership, the European Union pays less attention to this concept day by day. No wonder: the prospect of opening the borders with Azerbaijan, Armenia, Byelorussia, Georgia, Moldavia and Ukraine does not seem attractive to the Europeans, and the very attempt to create a new anti-Russian coalition is a failure for some objective reasons. But it looks like Brussels decided to show the bait, feeling the "partners'" growing displeasure.
It was Poland that acted as a catalyst of the idea. During his speech at a meeting dedicated to the European neighbourhood policy in the context of the Brussels forum, the head of MFA stated that the European Union could set up the system of "minor encouragements" for member-countries of the East Partnership, UNIAN reports. According to the diplomat, in due time, EU offered a "big carrot" to Poland - membership after some complicated reforms. And if today Brussels is not ready to take Azerbaijan, Armenia, Byelorussia, Moldavia and Ukraine under its wing, it could grant them with certain privileges as compensation. For instance, it could make visas cheap but without the long and tiresome talks with the republics' authorities about the visa regime facilitation
It is a complicated issue whether the rest of the European Union countries will agree to the proposal. On one hand, one surely has to heat the mentioned "group of eight's" interest to Eastern Partnership. On the other hand, it is the opening of the borders with former Soviet republics, as well as their potential membership in the union, that has cooled the attitude to the initiative.
As reported by President of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems Leonid Ivashov, refusals to the citizens of the post-Soviet republics in trips and job seeking shows the European countries' resistance to the degrading of their national space. "Such resistance can be seen in Italy, Switzerland, France and Germany, - the expert says. - They do not want any alien culture beams".