Belarus is actively participating in the multilateral dimension of the Eastern Partnership (EaP). The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Vladimir Makei took part in the EaP summits in Vilnius (28-29 November 2013), Riga (21-22 May 2015) and Brussels (24 November 2017, 13-14 may 2019). Belarus took part in the virtual summit of the EaP at the level of Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko, dedicated to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and the prospects for the development of the EaP initiative.
Belarus is also regularly taking part in meetings of such EaP steering bodies as the EaP Foreign Ministers’ meetings (most recently on 12 June 2020 in virtual format) and the EaP Senior official’s meetings. Belarus is contributing to work within all the four thematic platforms of the Eastern Partnership (“Strengthening institutions and good governance”, “Economic development and market opportunities”, “Connectivity, energy efficiency, environment and climate change”, “Mobility and people-to-people contacts”), corresponding panels and working groups.
The Belarusian side took an active part in the development of Partnership priorities after 2020, paying key attention to promoting the non-confrontational nature of the initiative and its focus on pragmatic results of cooperation that are understandable to ordinary citizens. Belarus is consecutively promoting a more result-oriented EaP in the joint interest of the EU and Partner Countries. Belarus is initiating together with other Partners the elaboration of concrete projects aimed at developing transport and energy connectivity, strengthening regional energy security, tackling environmental threats, improving the effectiveness of border management and customs procedures to facilitate trade among the Eastern Partners and the EU.
Belarus initiated the creation of the EaP Business Forum (2011) and the EaP panel on harmonisation of digital markets (2015) as platforms for dialogue and cooperation between the business communities and economic structures in the EU and Partner Countries.
Based on the need to avoid new dividing lines in the region, Belarus is gradually promoting within the EaP the idea of “integration of integrations”; which in the longer perspective could serve as a basis for harmonising integration processes within the European Union and the Eurasian Economic Union.
In response to the restrictive measures imposed by the EU against Belarus and a decrease in the level of contacts in the Eastern Partnership, Belarus at this stage announced its participation in the initiative at the expert level.