Georgia's integration into the European Union, bilateral ties and deepening sectoral cooperation between Georgia and Bulgaria were discussed on Friday in a meeting between Georgian Foreign Minister Ilia Darchiashvili and his Bulgarian counterpart Mariya Gabriel.
Gabriel highlighted Sofia’s “strong support” for the bloc granting Georgia its membership candidate status, and noted both states shared “common European values”. She noted Georgia should “count on Bulgaria's political and practical support on this path”, the Georgian foreign office said.
The parties emphasised Georgia's progress both on the path of integration into the European Union and in the process of fulfilling the 12 recommendations outlined by the European Commission for granting the country candidate status later this year.
The Bulgarian side gave “positive assessment” to Georgia's reforms and efforts made in the process of rapprochement with the EU, while also pointing out the country’s “important role” for the bloc in such “key areas” as energy security and alternative transit routes.
The ministers stressed the “growing potential” of the Black Sea and noted the importance of deepening and developing cooperation between the two countries on regional topics, including Bulgaria's involvement in the green energy project.
The meeting also focused on the current agenda of bilateral cooperation and the “high-level ties” between the countries, both at the legislative and governmental levels, while also emphasising the “great potential” of deepening sectoral cooperation in economy, trade, technology, education, culture and agriculture.
The officials pledged readiness to “actively work” in these directions, including by bringing business circles of the two countries closer.
The ministers expressed hope that the “high-level ties” would contribute to the further strengthening of relations, with the Georgian official inviting his counterpart to the country.