"Georgia Will Decide for Itself Whether it Wants to Be a Member of the European Union" - EU Ambassador
(JAMnews) EU Ambassador to Georgia Pavel Gerchinsky says that the EU wants to give Georgia the opportunity to join, “but Georgia will decide for whether they want to be a member of the EU or not.”
“Whatever decision Georgia makes, we in the European Union respect it. We understand that 89% of Georgians support European integration and EU membership. This is a historically high figure,” Gerchinsky says.
He hopes that the process of Georgia’s accession to the European Union will be completed. According to him, this is a long and complex process that all countries have gone through to join the European Union:
“I also know that European integration is included in the Georgian constitution. We are here to help you, work with you and make sure the Georgian government has the support it needs to make that dream come true. However, it is now up to the Georgians to move this stone, and I hope that this process will continue and successfully culminate in Georgia’s membership in the European Union. But everything is in the hands of the Georgian political elite.
Let’s hope there is enough progress on reforms for the 27 member states to take the next step towards Georgia’s membership in the European Union, a candidate status that Georgia could have achieved in December. But I repeat, this will depend on the progress that Georgia makes on the path of reforms,” he said.
On June 17, 2022, the European Commission prepared a conclusion granting Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova candidate status for EU membership. Ukraine and Moldova will receive EU candidate status and will be required to fulfill certain obligations, while Georgia will first be obliged to fulfill a 12-point plan before it receives candidate status.
On November 8, 2022, European parliamentarians discussed the annual report on the implementation of the Association Agreement between Georgia and the European Union at a meeting of the Foreign Affairs Committee in Brussels. According to the adopted compromise document, Bidzina Ivanishvili is no longer mentioned as an oligarch, but in the chapter on deoligarchization, his name and surname are indicated and it is written that it is necessary to take legislative decisions regarding Ivanishvili’s excessive influence.
On February 3 this year, the European Commission published a report on Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova’s compliance with EU legislation and assessed Georgia’s compliance with EU foreign policy as “moderately prepared.”