Eastern Partnership

Eastern Partnership

Eastern Partnership – Working Together to Build Common Future

Lithuania achieved its major foreign policy goals after the restoration of independence. The country became a full-fledged member of the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Today, Lithuania actively assists other Eastern European countries on their path toward Euro-Atlantic integration. For six of them – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine – the Eastern Partnership has become a vehicle to fulfil their European aspirations.

Good neighborly relations with the countries, also known as Eastern partners, and full support of broad political, economic and social reforms in them, constitute a permanent foreign policy priority for Lithuania.

The Eastern Partnership was officially launched at the first Eastern Partnership Summit in Prague, the Czech Republic, on 7 May 2009. The direction for its further development was provided by subsequent Summits in Warsaw, Poland (27-28 September 2011), Vilnius, Lithuania (28-29 November 2013), Riga, Latvia (21-22 May 2015), and Brussels, Belgium (24 November 2017). Today, the Eastern Partnership is the EU policy in its own right, through which the EU works with its eastern neighbors to achieve political association and economic integration.

Each of the neighbors is free to choose the level of ambition of the relationship with the EU, as well as its objectives. Lithuania actively supports the aspiration of the most ambitious partners to become full members of the EU and NATO in the future.

Within the Eastern Partnership policy framework, cooperation takes place at bilateral and at multilateral level. At bilateral level, the EU cooperates with a particular partner country. At multilateral level, cooperation simultaneously involves the EU institutions, six Eastern partners, and 27 EU Member States.

Bilateral cooperation

Multilateral cooperation 

To strengthen bilateral cooperation and each other through the exchange of best practices, the Prague Summit participants decided to start cooperating on a multilateral basis.

Meetings of Heads of State and Government, ministers, senior officials and experts are held regularly. They are attended by representatives of 27 EU Member States, EU institutions, and six Eastern partners.

The vast majority of these meetings take place in Brussels, Belgium. Lately, however, more and more of them are held in Eastern Partnership countries and EU Member States. The meetings are chaired by representatives of the EU institutions (European External Action Service, European Commission).

The Brussels Summit participants decided to strengthen the dialogue between the three partners that had signed Association Agreements (the three AA states) and the EU, yielding a faster and more effective implementation of the agreements and related reforms. Lithuania strongly supports this dialogue and recognizes its added value.

The Brussels Summit also endorsed the "20 Deliverables for 2020" aligned along the four key priority areas: stronger economy, stronger governance, stronger connectivity, and stronger society. The document aim at changing for the better the daily lives of citizens in the Eastern Partnership region.

In October 2018, the EU institutions prepared an overview of the implementation of the “20 Deliverables for 2020” as well as of concrete results achieved by September 2018.

Lithuanian institutions actively contribute to the implementation of the 20 key deliverables and other initiatives within this framework. An interinstitutional working group on the Eastern Partnership has been formed to help them coordinate their activities and share best practices.

For more information, please visit the website of Eupean External Action Service.