In Georgia, as many as 31 non-governmental organisations have proposed an action plan for Georgia’s European Union integration to the Georgian government. The non-governmental organisations outlined ten steps on the path to EU membership.
The country’s unwavering will to join the EU is evidenced by overwhelming support from the people of Georgia and glorified in the Georgian Constitution.
According to the NGOs, the activation of Georgia in the context of the war in Ukraine towards the EU is a matter of national security.
The recommendations presented by Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) are in the form of 10 steps that Georgia should follow in the direction of Europe.
Moreover, it is also highlighted that the entire political spectrum must be involved in this process in order to unite a polarised society around this concept.
The 10 steps which are presented by the non-governmental sector are as follows:
1. Design a specific action strategy:
The country should develop a national strategy to become a member of the EU and create a monitoring mechanism that should monitor this process with the involvement of civil society.
2. Start implementing democratic reforms:
Georgia must start implementing the democratic reforms outlined in the agreement “A Way Ahead for Georgia” that was signed on 19 April 2021 (the so-called Charles Michel Agreement). It entails significant changes to the judiciary and electoral systems.
3. The EU should give Georgia a new mandate:
NGOs said strengthening diplomatic efforts should be intensified as soon as possible to ensure the timely adoption of the new Georgia-EU Association Agenda with the Member States and begins its implementation.
4. Georgia should receive a questionnaire:
To obtain EU candidate status, Georgia will have to go through a number of steps, the first of which is completing a candidate status evaluation questionnaire. However, the questionnaire has not been handed over to Georgia yet. NGOs argue that intensified diplomatic work is required to ensure that the country receives the questionnaire as soon as possible.
5. Form a group that will complete the submitted questionnaire on time:
The government should mobilise human, financial, and technical resources and form a professional team (including a relevant inter-agency working group and/or agency) in order to complete the candidate status assessment questionnaire in a timely and coherent manner (the country cannot be granted status without this questionnaire).
6. Amend the Statute of the Commission for Integration of Georgia into the EU:
The NGOs demands that the government take into account the new reality and make changes in the European Union Integration Commission of Georgia regulations with the involvement of working groups in the process of preparing answers to the questionnaire.
7. The procedure should be transparent and open:
In order to make the procedure transparent and open, a National Council for European Union Accession should be established, which will comprise experts from the field. This board will serve as an advisory body.
8. Parliamentary oversight of the European Union accession procedure should be increased:
To achieve this plan, the government should consider appointing representatives of the opposition to the positions of the Parliamentary Committee on European Integration and the chairpersons of the Human Rights, Legal and Foreign Affairs Committees.
9. Strengthen cooperation with Moldova & Ukraine:
In accordance with the declaration of Petra Fortress (Association Trio – Moldova, Georgia, Ukraine), the NGOs proposed to take more necessary active and effective steps.
Moreover, there are 3 countries of the association
- Moldova and
Relations with Ukraine should be normalised, and the trio should organise a joint European Union summit.
10. Lastly, communication with the people should be strengthened:
The non-governmental sector advises the government to manage public expectations about the EU accession process properly and to maintain and boost relevant internal and external communication.