Study on gender equality in creative industries in the Eastern Neighbourhood
A new report summarising a study on gender equality within creative industries in four Eastern Neighbourhood countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Ukraine) was recently presented by the British Council at the HeForShe conference in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv.
The study ‘Gender equality and empowerment of women and men in cultural and creative industries’ is the result of the work of a team of nine experts who organised focus groups, conducted online polls and interviewed opinion leaders in each of the four countries.
In total, around 500 men and women were interviewed to understand why women in some industries get lower salaries, why it is necessary to defy stereotypes even if they are not very noticeable and why men in some countries are fearful of taking up certain professions.
According to the report, creative industries make up 4% of Ukraine’s Gross Domestic Product. Similar findings were also demonstrated in the other countries of the study. The experts aimed to illustrate the situation in creative disciplines with respect to gender and to understand how this information could be used in future programmes that will work with creative industries in the region.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov Addresses Participants of 21st Conference of Humanitarian Association of Turkmens of the World
I extend to you my congratulations on the opening of the 21st Conference of the Humanitarian Association of Turkmens of the World. I trust that this forum that is being held on the eve of the 27th anniversary of independence will be of great significance in terms of consolidation of Turkmens of the world and intensification of ties in such spheres as economy, culture, science, education, healthcare, tourism, sport, entrepreneurship etc., states the Address by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov to the participants of the 21st Conference of the Humanitarian Association of Turkmens of the World.
Independence Day is a holiday that symbolizes the unity of the nation and the inviolability of the sovereign state. After Turkmenistan declared independence twenty-seven years ago, the principles of a democratic, law-based, secular state were identified and secure foundations were laid for political, economic and cultural development of the country. Independence demonstrated to the whole world the unity of our people, especially of Turkmens residing in different countries, and thousand-year old traditions of peacefulness, friendship and good-neighborliness.
Our country is confidently advancing towards high goals. Drawing on the enormous creative potential of the people, including Turkmens of the world, we are successfully implementing national programs and carrying out socio-economic, cultural, educational and political reforms. With building and commissioning of comfortable dwelling houses, schools and universities, kindergartens, medical centers, large production and social enterprises, modern residential areas and settlements with developed transport and communication infrastructure, we are writing glorious pages in our motherland’s recent history.
Turkmenistan’s international profile is advancing steadily as well. Our country is known as an independent nation that pursues a policy of positive neutrality based on the principles of peacefulness and good-neighborliness.
In 2018, when we celebrate the slogan “Turkmenistan: the Heart of the Great Silk Road”, our country was elected a member of the Bureau of the Inland Transport Committee of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. Upon our initiative, the UN General Assembly adopted resolutions on supporting international efforts towards stabilizing the situation in Afghanistan and on cooperation between the United Nations and the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea. We also initiated the adoption of a resolution on declaring 3 June World Bicycle Day. Independent Turkmenistan was elected a member of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, ECOSOC, for 2019-2021. All these testify to the high international profile of our neutral country, the message says.
Our ancestors had to leave their place of origin due to a variety of reasons, but Turkmens never forgot about their historical homeland. Fatherland is the most precious thing in life. Therefore, for every one of us there is no duty higher than diligent service to Motherland, a country of peace and good-neighborliness, a country of progressive reforms.
Today we are building bridges of friendship and brotherhood and working closely with all countries, distant and close, where Turkmen diasporas exist. Our universities accept Turkmens from all over the world. Our friendly bonds are strengthening due to regularly held creative festivals and cultural events. Our country’s policy will continue to focus on expanding relations with Turkmens of the world and further enhancement of our country’s international profile.
I wish you all good health, happy and prosperous life, much success in your work oriented towards ensuring prosperity of independent Turkmenistan, the Presidential Address states.
Mamuka Bakhtadze: Democracy is about engagement and it is based on values
As Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze emphasized at the Tbilisi International Conference organized by the McCain Institute and the Economic Policy Research Center, democracy is, above all else, about engagement, the engagement of the government, civil society, and media. Everyone has a role in supporting our young democracy.
Chief Columnist for Financial Time Edward Luce inquired whether the ongoing processes in Europe affect Georgia's choice because European democracy, according to him, is not the same as it used to be. In this context, the panel discussion's moderator cited the events in Poland and Slovakia, and named Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and the US president's policy.
According to Mamuka Bakhtadze, political processes do change, but values remain the same.
"Yes. It is a political process and there are some changes but values are still on the table, and these are the values that created this civilization. We are absolutely committed and optimistic about a very bright future of the European family," the Prime Minister underlined.
Prime Minister's Press Office
The Eastern Partnership European School: New perspectives for youth in the EaP region
This week families prepare for the new school year. Bright, motivated students across Europe are full of determination to acquire new skills to support their employability in the future. Today’s students will be tomorrow’s citizens, leaders, professionals and entrepreneurs. Providing them with a good education and the right skills is an investment in the future.
At the start of this school year, I am proud to inaugurate, together with Georgia’s Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze, the brand new Eastern Partnership European School. It is a major achievement for the European Union and documents its support to young people across the Eastern Partnership region (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, and Ukraine). The school will open its doors today in Tbilisi to its first 30 students aged 16-17 who succeeded a rigorous, merit-based selection process to obtain the scholarships. With the support of the European Union’s 28 Member States and its six Eastern partner countries, the students will be offered a high quality education with the opportunity to engage in the study of Europe, in a multilingual, multicultural environment, through academic courses and extra-curricular activities.
Investing in young people is my priority. In my role as European Commissioner, I have actively worked together with the six partner countries to bring more opportunities to young people across the region. I believe everyone has the right to quality and inclusive education. The Eastern Partnership Summit in November 2017 endorsed a new support package for youth, worth €340 million, as one of the "20 Deliverables for 2020". This will help create the necessary conditions for young people from the entire region to study, work, engage with their societies and to fully develop their potential.
As part of this package, the European Union will reinforce one of its most successful initiatives, Erasmus+. By 2020, we estimate that over 80,000 young people, youth workers, students and academic staff from the Eastern Partnership region will have taken part in exchange opportunities
I have always regarded education as the most important driver of change. However, changes in technology and labour market patterns all require constant adjustments. Young people increasingly need to develop skills and approaches that can make them more flexible and innovative to deal with a constantly evolving environment. Basic and transversal skills taught from pre-primary up to secondary and tertiary education are crucial.
We also know from experience that a better matching of skills with labour market demand is key to enhance competitiveness and economic development in the long term. Therefore, continued support is being provided to Vocational Education and Training (VET) across the six countries. A budget of over €80 million will aim at modernising qualification systems and VET attractiveness.
The EU also strongly shares the six countries’ aspirations to support the development of entrepreneurial skills and bring its education system to the next level. In this context, the EU4Youth programme aims to improve youth employment perspectives – notably, but not only for vulnerable and disadvantaged young people - by fostering their entrepreneurial potential and helping them develop indispensable skills for the labour market. This is done through the establishment of business incubators and innovation clusters, mentoring schemes focused on entrepreneurship and non-formal catch-up programmes for early school leavers.
Supporting young people has always been and will continue to be at the heart of the agenda of the European Union. The Eastern Partnership European School focuses precisely on the goal: to provide young people with the right set of knowledge, skills and opportunities based on European values. I am convinced that this will contribute to a better exchange and understanding in the region.
Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations
First Eastern Partnership European School opens its doors in Tbilisi
The first Eastern Partnership European School opened today in Tbilisi, Georgia. One of the Eastern Partnership's 20 deliverables for 2020, it will provide students from the EU’s six Eastern partner countries with an innovative academic programme while fostering multicultural exchanges and cooperation.
Today, the first Eastern Partnership European School opened its doors to 30 students from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. The start of the academic year was marked with a special event in the presence of EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn and Mamuka Bakhtadze, Prime Minister of Georgia.
Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, said: “I’m very proud to be in Tbilisi today to open the first Eastern Partnership European School. It is a project close to my heart and marks a new milestone in the EU’s cooperation with its Eastern partners. Offering high quality education to youth is an investment in the future of the students, of their countries, and of our strong and enduring partnership. The school's opening is also proof of our determination to implement the 20 deliverables for 2020, which are at the heart of the Eastern Partnership and bringing tangible benefits to citizens."
At the Eastern Partnership Summit in November 2017, all EU Member States and the six Eastern partner countries endorsed the Eastern Partnership European School as a top priority and as part of the commitment to strengthen support to youth and education in the region. The school is one of the 20 deliverables for 2020, endorsed by leaders at the last Summit, and also constitutes part of the wider €340 million support package for youth.
The unique diploma programme offered at the Eastern Partnership European School combines academic excellence with specialised teaching inspired by the European school system. Students aged 16 and 17 will attend classes in a multilingual and multicultural environment to extend and deepen their knowledge about Europe and the European Union. Furthermore, they will have access to a rich extra-curricular programme and have the chance to participate in high-level conferences on EU subjects. The students will graduate with an International Baccalaureate Diploma on European Studies.
The Eastern Partnership (EaP) is a joint policy initiative that aims to deepen and strengthen relations between the European Union (EU), its Member States and its six Eastern neighbours: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. It is a specific dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy. The Eastern Partnership aims at building a common area of shared democracy, prosperity, stability and increased cooperation.
Georgia: EU reiterates support for energy efficiency measures during visit
During her recent visit to Georgia, Katarina Mathernova –the Deputy Head of the Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations of the European Commission – visited the Kakheti region, where one of the EU-supported Covenant of Mayors Demonstration Projects is being implemented.
In the framework of the project, two kindergartens – one in the city of Telavi and a second one in Ikalto village – will be retrofitted in order to become more energy efficient. The two institutions will also switch to green energy through biomass heating systems. These measures will create more comfortable conditions for children, but will also help the kindergartens to save money and energy.
“The European Union has been supporting Kakheti for many years already. And every time I come to Georgia, I meet people whose lives were changed for the better thanks to the EU. The local initiatives, which are supported by the EU, bring economic growth, social benefits and support the rights of and create new opportunities for the citizens,” - said Mathernova during her visit.
Covenant of Mayors Demonstration Projects are part of the EU4Energy Initiative. EU4Energy covers all EU support to improve energy supply, security and connectivity, as well as to promote energy efficiency and the use of renewables in the Eastern Partner countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine). It does this by financing projects and programmes that help to reform energy markets and to reduce national energy dependence and consumption. Over the long term, this makes energy supply more reliable, transparent and affordable, thus reducing energy poverty and energy bills for both citizens and the private sector.