1.The EU warmly welcomes the OSCE Representative to the Latvian-Russian JointCommission on Military Pensioners, Lieutenant Colonel (ret.) Helmut Napiontek,back to the Permanent Council, and thanks him for his report.
2.We take note that from the time of the signing of the bilateral agreement on 30April 1994 the number of eligible personnel has decreased from 22,320 to 4,484as of 1 October 2022, around 600 less than one year ago.
3.We welcome that, as in previous years, no individual complaints by militarypensioners have been made and that no Commission meetings have been heldeither.
4.We take note of your evaluation that the annual fixing of the Russianreimbursement for medical care expenses for military pensioners does not seemto present a particular problem for the two sides at the moment. However, weregret that no real progress has been achieved in resolving this issue, where,according to your observation, the Representative plays only a marginal role.
5.We recall your assessment that there have been no new fundamental issuesconcerning the work of the Representative and that both sides appear to evaluatethe current situation as stable. Therefore, we share your conclusion that thefunction of a Representative should continue to exist on a “stand by” basis, actingonly if requested, and requiring only minor resources, as reflected in the 2023 budget proposal scaled down by 27,3% compared to last year.
6. In conclusion, we thank you for your engagement over the past year and we wish you a positive continuation of your functions.
The Candidate Countries NORTH MACEDONIA*, MONTENEGRO*, SERBIA*, ALBANIA*, UKRAINE and the REPUBLIC OF MOLDOVA, the Potential Candidate Countries BOSNIA and HERZEGOVINA* and GEORGIA, and the EFTA countries LIECHTENSTEIN and NORWAY, members of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this statement.
* North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.