This year the EU Twinning in Georgia marks 10 years. To celebrate these accomplishments on 1 October, at the National Museum, the EU and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs held a commemorative event. About 100 people participated in the event, representing twinning beneficiary institutions, potential beneficiary institutions as well as members of ongoing twinning teams and Member State representatives.
The event was opened by Mr. Vakhtang Makharoblishvili, the First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia and H.E. Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union. They stressed the importance of the Twinning instrument in the process of reforming and fulfilling the commitments under the Association Agreement.
"For the past 10 years, the Twinning instrument has brought together civil servants from EU Member States with their Georgian counterparts in constructive cooperation. With 54 completed, ongoing and planned projects, I believe we can safely say that this instrument is a success. Moreover, it is testimony to the fact that Georgia is the European Union’s most ambitious partner in the region. Twinning is, and will remain, a key part of our close cooperation." noted Ambassador Hartzell.
The event further covered Georgia’s experience as regards Twinning and impact in the EU integration process. The panel involved the Project Leaders of the successful on-going and completed Twinning projects who shared their experience and outlined the lessons learnt.
Furthermore, the representatives of the Georgian line ministries and agencies had an opportunity to get relevant information on TWG and TAIEX, and their effective implementation, discuss the common challenges, meet other experienced colleagues and enrich the professional network.
The Twinning instrument is a peer-to-peer instrument allowing for a direct exchange of knowledge and expertise between EU Member States public administrations and their counterparts in the Beneficiary Country.
In Georgia the first Twinning project, launched in 2009, was between the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia and the German Federal Ministry of Education - on implementing the Bologna Action Lines in Georgia. Since then a vast majority of key priority areas of EU-Georgia cooperation has been covered by the Twinning instrument and the demand has consistently increased. Upcoming Twinning projects will cover areas such as food safety, human rights, judiciary and security.