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The European Union and the Council of Europe to strengthen their support for good governance in the EU’s Eastern neighbourhood

The European Union and Council of Europe are extending the Partnership for Good Governance programme to help strengthen human rights, democracy and the rule of law in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine.

The second phase of the programme (worth €17.5 million between 2019 and 2021) was launched at a ceremony in Brussels on 7 May.

The Partnership for Good Governance aims to help the EU’s six Eastern partner countries move closer to European standards on human rights, democracy and the rule of law. All of the countries involved, except Belarus, are also members of the Council of Europe.

Working closely with national authorities and other stakeholders, the programme helps bring about changes to laws and practices through reviews of legislation, improving the efficiency of public institutions, training courses for professionals and the sharing of information, experiences and best practices.

The first phase of the programme, which included 50 country-specific and multilateral initiatives, ran from 2015 to 2018.

Examples of results achieved so far include the following:

  • Supporting democratic elections in Armenia through changes to legislation and training courses for politically-active women, domestic observers and investigative journalists ;
  • Helping to set up a new online monitoring and reporting system against corruption in Azerbaijan ;
  • Training 17 public institutions in Belarus on how to carry out corruption risk assessments ;
  • Producing 52 kindergarten textbooks in Georgia to help improve education for children from national minorities ;
  • Improving data collection to help improve court efficiency and access to justice in Moldova ;
  • Training judges, lawyers, prosecutors and prison staff in Ukraineon human rights, anti-discrimination and ethics.

The European Union will provide 80% of the funding for the second phase of the Partnership for Good Governance, while the Council of Europe will implement the activities involved and fund the remaining 20%.

The new phase will focus on judicial reform and fighting corruption, as well as measures to tackle discrimination