As it became known, the European Commission developed a "interim plan" to improve relations with Belarus. What is the essence of this plan? With this question, we turned to an expert of the Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies said Denis Melyantsou.
Melyantsou: This plan is a step by step "road map" in a variety of ways — from political reform to the economy and the legal system closer to European legislation. The fact is that today the EU and Belarus have no legal basis for cooperation, not ratified the agreement on partnership and cooperation. Therefore, we need some intermediate document, which will temporarily replace this contract and which will manage the entire process of rapprochement between Belarus and the EU, the objectives of which are stated in the Eastern Partnership. This is a document of 20 pages, which will be detailed objectives of cooperation for the parties — the EU and Belarus, the problem of cooperation.
There will be a section on political reform, economic part, the sections about the environment, trade, tax reform, etc.
This is an ambitious document that should keep the goals and objectives of European and Belarusian. Early in the year the European Commission has made recommendations to the EU Council, the draft plan is now referred to the Council, which is working on finalizing the document. The presentation of the document to be held in November. And after the election in Belarus, if it's all quiet down, will begin negotiations with the Belarusian side. After all, the document loses all meaning if Belarus did not agree to implement it.
Something that will be asked in November — it will be a draft, draft version of the document is natural that in the course of negotiations with Belarus on the list will be amended, it will be adjusted, as it is clear that not all of that will be offered to the Union, will be the taste of the Belarusian side. Therefore, the fact that preparing such a document, it will be presented, so far delayed signing for Belarus the new agreement on partnership and cooperation with the EU.
Drakakhrust: Denis, and that as part of this plan offers the European Union? From what you have said more clearly that Belarus should take. And for what?
Melyantsou: Item is hard to say, because the document is not yet open. From the European side offered assistance in these reforms — financial, technological and political. The EU feels that Belarus "Swoop" politically impossible to change, so we need a way to involve her in an economy through infrastructure projects. And a significant part of the document will just be devoted to the economy, trade and infrastructural reforms that will spansavatstsa EU.
According to my information, it's pretty balanced document which may be of interest to both Belarus and the European Union. There's been a departure from the policy of abumovlenastsi, there is not as such that you release political prisoners, and we will give you in return for something else. The document is based on the principle of the Eastern Partnership, if cooperation takes place where it is most useful for both sides, and do not include pre-conditions under which may be moving to the next phase.
Drakakhrust: Dennis, you mentioned the "Eastern Partnership". But it seems that all the things that you listed there in the documents of the program. What is new, breakthrough character of this new interim plan? Or the provisions of the "Eastern Partnership" just hard perakambinavanyya?
Melyantsou: The importance of this document is that it prescribes specific areas of work in which will be discussed and specific projects. This is what achieves the Belarusian side in the "Eastern Partnership". The frame is, the tasks have been set, but no one financed projects. In 2006 there was a document that the EU could bring to Belarus, but it was mainly a set of political slogans. Finally we get the document describes in detail not only the goals and objectives of the EU and Belarus, but also shows in which areas the principles on which the reform will be carried out. From this document it will be clear what the EU wants from Belarus, specifically, but not at the level of political slogans. Since it will be adopted after negotiations with Minsk, there is a good chance that it will give a great impetus to cooperation between Belarus and the EU.