Haven't We Forgotten about the European Neighborhood Policy Action Plan?


The Program of the Government has been worked out taking into account the provisions of the RA Strategy on National Security and the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper. The document includes the principal provisions of the pre-election programs of the RA President, Republican Party of Armenia and Prosperous Armenia, as well as individual provisions of the pre-election program of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation.

Program of the RA Government
June 21, 2007

ENP Action Plan

Seven months ago Armenia signed the European Neighborhood Policy (ENP) Action Plan. According to this document, within the next five years Armenia will become much closer to be called a European country through implementation of targeted reforms, and this will not reflect merely a geographical proximity. This is a comprehensive document including a general panorama of Armenia's public life. It is basically a concept paper and defines the general goals and objectives. It is a public document, available to all who are interested. It is assumed that within these five years the country will be developing specific sectoral projects, a concrete list of activities and will be following this work plan.

Program of RA Government

In seven months from singing the ENP Action Plan the Program of the RA Government was ratified. It defines the goals of the RA Government for the next five years. The Program of RA Government is that comprehensive document, which included the overall goals of the government's activities in various sectors and subsectors, as well as the concrete steps to achieve these goals. In fact, it is the Government's program which highlights the ways and directions the country has taken to realize the activities outlined in the concept papers it has ratified and the obligations it has committed to carry out within the framework of international relations. As such, the Preface of this document declares that it is based on the major provisions of the RA Strategy on National Security and PRSP.

The Total of Comparisons

Thus, the ENP Action Plan will be wrapped up in 4.3 years and in 5 years the implementation of the Government's Program will end. A simple logic prompts that the Program should include the ENP Action Plan in its entirety, or at least all those parts for which the Government is responsible. Does it really include all these?

One thing is clear: the Program of the RA Government does not only fail to declare that it includes the provisions of the ENP Action Plan, but does not even mention the phrases "European Neighborhood Policy" and "Action Plan".

Some will clam that this is quite natural, since the Program does not specify the goals of the RA foreign policy, taking into account the fact that according to the Constitution, these goals are associated with the institute of the RA President. Experts will assure that such a statement is a result of very low level of awareness. ENP AP has long expanded away from the dimension of country's foreign policy. It is a document referring to all the aspects of the public life in Armenia, specifically involving the whole spectrum of the sectors included in the Program of the RA Government.

Thus, on one hand, the Program is the official document according to which the majority of the ENP AP provisions are supposed to be implemented. On the other hand, it does not mention the Action Plan even once. One is remained to hope that this does not mean much, that the sectoral projects targeting the accomplishment of the AP goals are ardently being developed and in the process these projects are being synchronized with those that are being worked out in order to implement the Program of the Government and that eventually, this most important process is being properly coordinated on the level of institutions.

The time will answer all the questions. And this time is very short

This paper is elaborated based on the opinions passed by the participants of the round table "Seven Months from Signing the ENP Action Plan: what do we have?", which took place on July 6, 2007. The round table was attended by independent analysts, government officials and representatives of international organizations. The round table was organized with the support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.



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