Remarks by President Donald Tusk after his meeting with President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan
I am pleased to welcome President Sargsyan to Brussels today.
Armenia whose independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity we support is an important partner for the European Union.
I am very pleased to announce today the conclusion of negotiations on the new EU-Armenia Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement.
This new agreement will broaden the scope of our relations, taking into account the new global, political and economic interests we share and challenges we want to face together.
We are looking forward to stronger cooperation in sectors such as energy, transport and the environment, for new opportunities in trade and investments, and for increased mobility for the benefit of our citizens.
We have discussed today our shared values including our commitment to democracy, human rights, and the rule of law, which underpin the new agreement and our future cooperation.
The EU is already the first trade partner of Armenia, its first international donor and strongest supporter to reforms. We intend to expand these relations further in the coming years and have encouraged Armenia to continue reforms across a range of issues, including economic development, the business environment, the judiciary, human rights, the fight against corruption and measures to ensure free and fair elections.
We also discussed the peaceful resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The status quo is unsustainable. The conflict needs an early political settlement in accordance with international law. It does not have a military solution. The EU continues to fully support the mediation efforts and proposals of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs.
Mr President, thank you very much for coming to Brussels for your visit, for all your efforts and for our cooperation.
Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, 27/02/2017
Ministers gave their first reactions to the Commission's extensive legislative package "Clean Energy for all Europeans", which has has three main goals: putting energy efficiency first, achieving global leadership in renewable energies and providing a fair deal for consumers.
The package includes proposals on electricity market design, energy efficiency, security of supply, renewables and governance rules aimed at implementing the Energy Union strategy. The overall aim of the strategy is to transform the EU into a low carbon economy by 2030
Ministers acknowledged the importance of this legislation and underlined the need to make progress on all proposals. However, they also stressed that the implications of these issues for member states and the responsibility of the co-legislators calls for the proposals to be examined in detail.
The Council heard the Commission's presentation of its recent report on the State of the Energy Union. Ministers welcomed the report's conclusion that the European Union has already achieved considerable reductions in energy consumption and that the EU is on track to reach its 2020 energy efficiency target. At the same time they recognized that member states' efforts must continue.
Under "'any other business" items, the Council was briefed by the Presidency on progress on two important legislative proposals on which negotiations with the European Parliament have already started: the regulations on security of gas supply and on energy efficiency labelling. The Presidency intends to reach to reach a political agreement with the European Parliament on both files this semester.
Several ministers asked the Commission for clarifications on the Nordstream2 pipeline, also in the follow-up to the letter sent by the Chair of the Parliament's ITRE Committee to the Chair of the European Energy Council on this issue.
Ministers were also updated on the Ocean Energy Forum.
During a working lunch ministers discussed Energy Union governance, given its close links to all the other Clean Energy proposals.