Partnering with Georgia for stable democracy, trade and regional security
President Barroso congratulated Georgian leaders for steering the transition to the new government after recent elections. He also encouraged the Prime Minister to continue upholding democratic principles and the rule of law.
"Georgia is a key member of our Eastern Partnership and the European Union is keen in bringing the country closer to Europe," said President Barroso in the statement after meeting the new Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili in Brussels on Monday.
"The best way to achieve this is to conclude negotiations on an Association Agreement, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area," he continued, adding that both he and the Prime Minister hope that the negotiations can be finalised in time for the 2013 Eastern Partnership Summit.
Finally, President Barroso underlined the EU's commitment to Georgia’s territorial integrity. Through the Geneva International Discussions and the Monitoring Mission, the EU plays an important role in guaranteeing Georgia’s security. "We will remain an engaged partner in this front as well," he said.