On November 11, on the Independence Day of Poland, Krakow famous choir will perform old Polish music, organized by the Polish Embassy in Armenia in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Armenia and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of Poland at Aram Khachatryan Concert hall.
Speaking about the prospects of Armenia-EU relations, the Ambassador expressed hope that by the end of the year the framework agreement with the EU will be signed. "We hope the agreement will be signed by the end of the year. Moreover, this is very important for the economy and business. Entrepreneurs are looking forward to this agreement, which will regulate the future course of bilateral relations,” the Ambassador said.
At the beginning of September 2013, Armenia refused to sign the Association Agreement with EU after 3.5 years of negotiations and announced its intention to join the Eurasian Economic Union. Only after long-lasting negotiations in December 2015, Armenia and the EU resumed talks on developing a new framework agreement.
Another round of Armenia-EU negotiations has been held recently. At the moment, only two more rounds of negotiations are left, one of which will take place in Brussels, and the other in Yerevan. After that, the processes of summarizing and the finalizing of the framework agreement are expected.
As a reply to Media Center’s question, whether there are any problems that can hinder the signing of the agreement between the EU and Armenia, Novakovski expressed hope that the process would not have such a destiny.
“I hope that this time there will be no obstacle to the signing of this agreement. It is no secret that Armenia had the leading role in signing the Association Agreement with EU in 2013, but it chose the path to the Eurasian Economic Union. This agreement, however, will give Armenia an opportunity to become a member of the European Union, which is expected to happen," he said.
EU Expectations of Trump’s Victory
Upon the request of the journalists, the Ambassador spoke about the victory of US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. He assessed this event as the result of democratic elections of the US citizens.
At the same time, the Ambassador expressed the hope that the US foreign policy will not undergo serious changes. "When we were following the elections at the US embassy, the US Ambassador Mills said that 80 percent of the US foreign policy is usually maintained, and only 20% comprise the priorities of the new president’s programs," Novakovskin said.
In this context, he recalled Trump’s statement that he would make the USA again great and powerful and noted that it is in the interests of Poland and the EU. “Poland and the allied European countries are in favor that the USA becomes so,” the Ambassador said.
Due to the Ambassador, Poland expects the current US government to proceed with the commitments of the previous one. "We hope that the current government will become a partner of Poland and the European Union. I assume that there will not be extreme measures while applying changes,” Jerzy Marek Novakovski said.
“We accepted it with Regret but Understanding»
Referring to the current level of Armenia-Poland relations, the Ambassador highlighted the cooperation in several fields - trade, economy, political collaboration, and defense. He said that a Polish company is currently working with RA Ministry of Defense, the success of which can serve as an example for other companies.
As a reply to the question that Armenia and Poland collaborate within the framework of the program to modernize the military tanks about which the press wrote repeatedly, Novakovskin said that Poland is not participating in this process anymore. "The Ministry of Defence and the government decided to refurbish and modernize the tanks with Russia. It was accepted with regret, but understanding. The Polish companies in this field are not lagging behind Russia and are in great demand," he said.
He also noted that the Polish company is ready to continue the cooperation in the production of biometric passports for Armenia. "The decision is up to the Armenian side since the Polish company is ready," he said.
The diplomat expressed concern especially about the problems in trade and economic relations between Armenia and Poland. In particular, according to him, the turnover is not sufficient. "Although our economic relations have recorded growth last year. The annual turnover comprises 60-80 million USD (80%of which are exports from Poland to Armenia). Of course, it is not very satisfactory," he said, adding that the low level of awareness about the Armenian products is the problem of the Polish market.
The Armenian products are unknown in Europe or Poland. The buyers are not aware of them. Armenia is known only as a country, not as a brand. "It is recognized as a brand, but not associated with specific products. Therefore, steps should be taken in this direction," he concluded.
Arshaluys Mghdesyan, editor/events coordinator at “Media Center”
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