EU and Algeria agreed to deepen their partnership, to strengthen stability in the region and reviewed important issues in their relations. The 12th session of the Association Council between the European Union and Algeria expressed the commitment to deepening their partnership in order to achieve its full potential.
EU-Algeria Association Council
The meeting was an opportunity to provide an update on the state of cooperation. It was also a meeting on the bilateral and regional issues of common interest. At the top of the agenda are governance and human rights, economic cooperation and trade, the environment, energy and migration.
High Representative Josep Borrell stressed that Algeria “is a very important partner for Europe, due to its proximity and size, its role in the region and on the African continent, but also, and above all, due to the close ties that have united us for so long”. He also expressed the EU’s wish to “deepen relations in order to achieve their full potential and emerge with a truly strengthened partnership”.
EU HR Borrell at the EU-Algeria Association Council
The EU recalled that, as jointly agreed in the EU-Algeria Partnership Priorities, the bilateral relationship is based on mutual respect and on recognition of and respect for universal values and international commitments relating to the rule of law and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.
The EU underlined the importance of international cooperation to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic. In this connection, the EU has committed EUR 75 million. EU supports the purchase of essential medical equipment. EU also support the reduction of the economic impact of the crisis. The EU funds are contributing to the development of key sectors and employment.
EU will support the Algerian economy
The EU has also declared its willingness to continue to support the diversification of the Algerian economy. Improving the business climate is key to facilitating job-creating investments. In this context, it is important that trade take place in accordance with the Association Agreement. This Trade Deal provides the necessary predictability and stability. The European Commission recently submitted a proposal to resolve the dispute on that subject . The EU hopes to find an agreement very soon under Article 100 of the Association Agreement.
The EU recalled that the post-COVID-19 economic recovery must be based on sustainability. Progress towards economic systems that are sustainable in terms of natural resources and ensuring social inclusion is crucial to ensure sustainable development in both Algeria and the EU and, consequently, people’s well-being in the long term. The EU has shown its willingness to strengthen cooperation. This is happening through the exchange of expertise on adapting to climate change and integrating environmental issues into relevant sectoral policies.
Cooperation in the Energy sector
The energy sector is especially important in this respect, in particular with a view to an energy transition. The EU will continue to cooperate with Algeria. EU hopes to rapidly resume the activities of the EU-Algeria Strategic Partnership in the energy sector.
Human Rights and Migration
The human dimension, migration and mobility are among the joint priorities of the EU and Algeria. They should be addressed as part of a mutually beneficial partnership. The EU expressed its willingness to progress towards practical cooperation. The agreement will make better use of existing channels for mobility while respecting the competences of the EU, its Member States and Algeria. The development will ensure, in accordance with international commitments, the return of persons staying irregularly in the territory of one of the Parties. It will also strengthen governance and progress in the fight against criminal networks. The European Union expressed its readiness to play its part in tackling the root causes of irregular migration in the countries of origin.
EU and Algeria exchanged their analyses of the multiple crises in the region. The EU has expressed its firm commitment to work towards restoring and maintaining peace, stability and development there. The meeting was also an opportunity for the EU and Algeria to renew their determination to cooperate on protecting the security of their citizens in areas such as fighting radicalisation, preventing violent extremism and countering terrorist financing.