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(English) Annual Assembly and EaP Civil Society Conference 2017

The 9th Annual Assembly of the Forum and the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Conference took place on 25-27 October in Tallinn, Estonia.

The Annual Assembly of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum is the key event conducted on an annual basis since 2009. The General Assembly is the highest decision-making body of the EaP CSF. Every year the event brings together over 200 civil society representatives from the EaP region and the EU, as well as other stakeholders.

For the first time this year, the Annual Assembly of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum and the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Conference — conducted as a side event to the Eastern Partnership Summit on a biennial basis — was merged into one event with a common agenda.

The event was organised jointly by the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF) and the Estonian Center of Eastern Partnership under the auspices of the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. It served as a platform for debate on the future of the EaP policy and civil society’s contribution to reform processes in the region, and included among others the Civil Society Forum’s decision-making processes.

The overarching goal of the event was to strengthen the civil society organisations (CSOs) from the EaP and EU states, while enabling them to shape the future development of the Eastern Partnership.

The event was opened by the President of the Republic of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid. The EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn and other high-level speakers participated in the event.

The 3-day event covered the following priority topics: government and civil society cooperation, democratic governance, e-solutions as part of transparent governance, inclusive approaches to economic development, and civil society’s role in developing media competence and in fighting disinformation. Next to high level speakers and panel discussions, participants had a chance to share their experience in workshops, introduce their projects at the networking fair, and meet with local CSOs.

Attendees from the EaP and EU countries

“We commend the increased involvement of the civil society in policy dialogue with the EU since it reflects the growing recognition of the civil society as one of the policy-making actors. However, it should be provided with further opportunities for a more meaningful engagement and performance of its functions.” Dovilė Šukytė

Co-chair, EaP CSF Steering Committee

“I believe this phrase was coined in the corridors of the EU institutions: “If we do not export stability outside the EU, we will import instability inside it.” I would like to stress that civil society is an active partner both in boosting such an export and in preventing the dangerous import. The Annual Assembly and Civil Society Conference is yet another occasion to prove this.” Hennadiy Maksak

Co-chair, EaP CSF Steering Committee


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