European dialogue on modernisation with Belarusian society

In its conclusions of 23 March 2012, the Foreign Affairs Council welcomed the launching of a European dialogue on Modernisation with Belarusian society. The European dialogue on Modernisation was officially launched on 29 March 2012 at an event in Brussels by the Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle.

The European dialogue on Modernisation is a multi-stakeholder exchange of views and ideas between the EU and representatives of the Belarusian civil society and political opposition on necessary reforms for the modernisation of Belarus and on the related potential development of relations with the EU, as well as possible EU support in this regard.

The objective of the European dialogue is to:

(i)            to develop a clearer understanding by the EU and by the Belarusian opposition and Civil Society on the vision of a modern and democratic Belarus, and on the necessary reforms to achieve the modernization of Belarus,

(ii)          to clarify the related potential development of relations with the EU, based on the European Neighbourhood Policy and the Eastern Partnership, as well as possible EU support in this regard;

(iii)        for Belarusian stakeholders to gain practical knowledge and insight from EU Member States’ experiences as regards transition processes.

The dialogue will be co-organised by the EEAS and the Commission with involvement of EU Member States. The participation by civil society and the political opposition will be inclusive.

Work will take place in four thematic working groups: 

a)     political dialogue and reform;

b)     justice and home affairs, including mobility; people-to-people contacts

c)      economic, social reform and sector policy issues, including privatisation;

d)     trade, market and regulatory reforms.

The meetings of the working groups will mainly take place in Minsk. Supporting thematic seminars and events on key modernisation related issues will be organized by EU member states and by the EEAS/Commission.   

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