European Commission's Report on Georgia Positive

The European Commission has issued a report today concerning Georgia’s visa liberalization process.

The Commission positively assessed the overall achievement of Georgia in terms of carrying out a number of successful reforms in diverse sectors.

“The EU-Georgia Visa Dialogue has proved to be an important and particularly effective tool for advancing far-reaching and difficult reforms in the Justice and Home Affairs area and beyond, impacting on areas such as the rule of law and justice reform. Beyond VLAP (Visa Liberalization Action Plan) benchmarks, Georgia took further steps to reform the Judiciary as well as the Prosecutor's Office. These issues are monitored in other dialogue frameworks, such as the Association Committee and the Association Council, and will also be monitored in the context of the Association Agenda,” the report states.

Photo by European Commission.

According to the report the progress achieved by Georgia over the last three years in all areas covered by the four blocks of the VLAP is steady and effective.

“It demonstrates the commitment and constant efforts of the Georgian Government and all state institutions that have made fulfilment of the VLAP benchmarks a top national priority. Georgia has allocated appropriate financial and human resources to ensure that the reforms are sustainable.

“The EU is also contributing to this process, notably through its EUR 16 million program for 'Capacity Building in Support of Border Management and Migration Management'. In addition, the 'Human Rights for all in Georgia' program helps to promote protection of minorities and vulnerable groups, strengthen capacities of the Personal Data Protection Inspector and establish effective functioning of labor administration.”

The report states that the continuous implementation of the VLAP reforms will also be supported by the upcoming technical cooperation Facility, which will cover migrant management, fight against organized crime and combating domestic violence.

According to the European Commission, comprehensive information campaigns have been run, aiming to clarify the rights and obligations surrounding visa-free travel. “Further activities are planned in the run-up to and after visa liberalization, under the '2014-2017 EU Integration and Communication Strategy' and the '2016-2020 Migration Strategy'.”

The Commission will continue to actively monitor Georgia’s continuous implementation of all benchmarks under the four blocks of the VLAP through the existing association structures and dialogues and, if necessary, through ad hoc follow-up mechanisms.

Click here to read full report.

18 December 2015 16:58