1. Eastern Partnership
On May 2009 the European Union (EU) launched the Eastern Partnership (EaP) – a new form of cooperation with six Eastern European countries – Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine. The EU’s initiative aims to promote democracy and good governance, socio-economic development, sectoral reforms, environmental protection, strengthen energy sector and encourage people-to-people contacts.
The EaP fosters integration of the six Eastern Partnership countries with the European Union. The EaP activities are focused on multilateral (EU – the six partner countries) and bilateral relationships (EU and its partner country). The EaP covers five thematic platforms and several flagship initiatives.
In the Communication dated December 3 2008 (COM (2008) 823) the European Commission emphasized the significance of active engagement of civil societies in the EaP.
2. Civil Society Forum
The European Commission initiated the creation of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (CSF). The CSF consists of civil society organizations from Georgia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia, and Ukraine; EU member states and also international non-governmental organizations.
The CSF has the objectives to promote the development of civil society organizations, cooperation among them, their dialogue with public bodies and achievement of EaP goals in the six partner countries.
The CSF activities include five Eastern Partnership thematic platforms and, therefore, five working groups:
1) Democracy, human rights, good governance and stability
2) Economic integration and convergence with EU policies;
3) Environmental protection, climate change and energy security;
4) Encourage people-to-people contacts
5) Social Dialogue
The CSF has a steering committee. The Steering Committee members are coordinators of each working group, national coordinators and representatives of the EU and international NGOs.
3. Georgian National Platform
Georgian National platforms are created in each partner country to ensure coordination of the CSF activities. The national platforms should promote cooperation within multilateral (EU – partner countries and relations among partners themselves) and bilateral (EU-Georgia) tracks of the EaP.
Local NGOs registered in Georgia and international NGOs working in partner countries comprise the national platform.
The Georgian National Platform (GNP) has the following functions:
1) support implementation of EaP thematic platforms and flagship initiatives in Georgia;
2) Represent the interests of the Georgian civil society at the CSF and support the CSF activities.
The GNP carries out the following activities:
1. Create five working groups in accordance with five thematic platforms and subgroups, if necessary;
2. Promote awareness raising about the EaP;
3. Discuss implementation of the EaP five thematic platforms and flagship initiatives in Georgia;
4. Submit outcomes of discussion as recommendations to the European Commission, Government of Georgia (GoG) and the CSF;
5. Monitor the EaP at its own discretion;
6. Publicize recommendations/ monitoring results;
7. Support researches/studies to ensure EaP implementation;
8. Support proper and effective implementation of the CSF recommendations in Georgia;
9. Cooperate with:
a) Government of Georgia;
b) National EU delegation;
c) European Commission;
d) EU Member States’ embassies in Georgia
e) National platforms of the other EaP countries;
f) International, EU and third-country civil society organizations participating in the CSF;
g) CSF Steering Committee;
10. Elaborate proposals for the next CSF meeting agenda;
11. Elect a Georgian National Coordinator and introduce the candidate to the CSF.
The scope of national platform members activities should be in line with and cover five thematic platforms.
Coordinating Council is created to facilitate and ensure better implementation of the national platform activities. The Coordinating Council consists of coordinators and representatives of all working groups.
MISSION AND STRATEGIES
Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum Georgian National Platform (EaP CSF GNP) mission is to increase the civil society’s consolidation around and participation in Georgia’s European integration processes, to popularize democratic values, and to advocate for the interests of citizens toward improved overall wellbeing in the country.
EaP CSF GNP strategic objectives (SOs):
SO 1. To monitor and advocate for the implementation of Georgia’s AA obligations on national and EU levels through supporting dialogue between public authorities, private sector, and civil society
SO 2. To communicate the importance of Georgia’s European integration efforts to the wider public
SO 3. To ensure the EaP NP’s effective functioning for the achievement of its mission and objectives