At the MAXCAP Policy Briefing in Berlin on December 3, 2013, the conclusions and objectives of the 2013 Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius were debated among scholars and officials from Armenia, Georgia, Lithuania and Germany.
MAXCAP Advisory Board Member Prof. Klaudijus Maniokas highlighted the positive outcomes of the summit, stressing that despite the failure of the Association Agreeement, the current protests in the Ukraine show the public awareness and desire for stronger EU engagement. However, Dr. Nelly Babayan, Center for Transnational Studies, gave some inside knowledge from Armenia and emphasized the enduring Russian influence in the region, which has eroded any major successes the summit could have delivered for EU partnerships in the region. Discussion moderator Prof. Tanja Börzel concluded from this lively and insightful discussion that Russia's important geopolitical position in the region has to be taken into account when thinking about future approaches in the Eastern Partnership. Furthermore, future developments in the region have to be watched given that important democracy and governance indicators show a slightly negative trend despite of the EU factor.