The European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) was developed in 2004, with the objective of creating a space of prosperity, stability and security between the enlarged EU and her Eastern and Southern neighbours.
Based on common values, such as democracy, human rights, the rule of law as well as principles of market economy, the European Neighbourhood Policy aims at a privileged partnership with sixteen States: Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Egypt, Georgia, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Moldova, Morocco, Occupied Palestinian Territory, Syria, Tunisia and Ukraine. Independent from the EU-enlargement process, the European Neighbourhood Policy envisages deepened political relations as well as economic integration, while both depend on progress in reforms and commitment to the above mentioned values.
The joint communication “A New Response to a Changing Neighbourhood” by the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the European Commission inspired a debate about the future of the European Neighbourhood Policy. In its Council Conclusions of 20 June 2011, the Foreign Affairs Council agreed on a number of guiding principles for the future of the European Neighbourhood Policy. It states that future EU support “will be tailored to the needs of partners willing to undertake reforms and to cooperate effectively with the EU in all relevant domains, and may be reconsidered where reform does not take place.” Austria welcomes the proposed principles for the ENP-reform and in particular the new focus on conditionality and differentiation between the sixteen partner countries.
In 2009, the Eastern Partnership was created as a specific Eastern dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy. It encompasses new Association Agreements, deep and comprehensive free trade agreements as well as enhanced mobility and security through visa facilitation and re-admission agreements with the six neighbouring countries.
Besides, the Eastern Partnership offers a multilateral framework for cooperation between the six partner countries, including four thematic platforms. In addition, regular summit meetings are organized. The next summit will take place in September 2011 in Warsaw.