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Deputy FM Amanatidis’ speech on the ratification of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Foreign Ministries of Greece and Jordan

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Mr. President,

Fellow MPs,

Today we are debating the ratification of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, regarding cooperation on European Union issues.

The MoU up for ratification was drawn up on the initiative of Greece and signed on 10 June 2014, in Athens – during a visit from the Jordanian Foreign Minister – with the basic aim of capitalizing on the traditionally excellent political relations between the two countries, in the direction of our country’s providing institutional know-how on matters of European interest.

The strengthening of relations with Jordan and support for the Jordanian side’s reform efforts to consolidate democratic institutions and the socioeconomic development of the country are a firm pursuit of the European Union.

Given the recognition of Jordan as a Mediterranean partner of the European Union, and due to the strategic nature of the country within the southern neighbourhood and the Arab world in general, the institutional framework of Jordanian-EU relations is determined by the Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement, as well as by “Action Plan 2012”, which has been adopted within the framework of the “Southern Dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy”.

Acknowledging the Greek Foreign Ministry’s extensive experience with the functioning of the institutional organs, and the implementation of the common policies, of the European Union, through the current MoU our country will contribute decisively towards the implementation of the reform processes that have been initiated by the other contracting party, with the aim of enhancing cooperation and the relations between Jordan and the European Union.

The more specific articles of the present MoU provide for the provision of assistance for the development of institutional infrastructure, through the exchange of experiences, expertise and know-how in the implementation of EU policies. This assistance will be carried out through training programmes, visits, joint studies and research, and other related activities.

Moreover, it provides for the potential for the contracting parties to seek funding for the programmes and action plans in question from the mechanisms for institutional cooperation and funding that operate within the framework of the European Union.
The ratification of the present agreement is expected to bring significant benefits for our country through the upgrading of our national relations with Jordan, which, on the one hand, functions traditionally as a factor for stability in the wider Middle East region and, on the other hand – at this time – is hosting an ever-growing number of Syrian refugees.

In the direction of the development of broader national geopolitical relations of good neighbourliness, and for the purpose of providing urgent support for the processes of democratic reform and economic development, I recommend the legislative ratification of the present draft law.

Thank you.

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