President Saakashvili said in Prague that EU’s Eastern Partnership was “the Europe’s very dignified response” to the August war, “although it might be a little bit late response.”
Saakashvili along with leaders from five other former Soviet states - Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine – is in Prague where the EU Czech presidency is hosting the Eastern Partnership summit, the initiative aimed at fostering EU’s closer ties with the six former Soviet nations. Belarus and Moldova are represented at the summit by deputy prime ministers.
“We are becoming institutional part of European Union space. It means that we have a chance to have free trade with the European Union in the nearest future, which means three and four fold increase of our export to Europe; it means that additional hundreds of millions will come into Georgia, apart of already existing [aid] funds [from EU]; it also means that I hope this year we will have simplified visa rules with EU and actually Georgians will have no barriers on their way to European Union,” Saakashvili told a group of reporters from the Georgian television stations in Prague on May 7.
“We are becoming part of a new space. We have quit Commonwealth of Independent States and Georgia was to a certain extent hanging in the air. We are no longer in CIS, but we are now entering into the space, which has larger market, where there is much more opportunities – this is the common European space,” he added.