Summit on Western Balkans to Take Place on Monday in Paris

Total Croatia News

Croatia will be represented by Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković.

Leaders of six countries of the European Union and six countries of the Western Balkans will gather in Paris on Monday at the 3rd Summit of the Berlin Process, which was launched two years ago in order for the countries of Southeast Europe to get closer to the European Union through regional cooperation on specific projects, reports on July 3, 2016.

Summit in Paris is the continuation of a process that began with a meeting on 28 August 2014 in Berlin, and was continued a year later with a summit held in Vienna. The Berlin Process is a continuation of the Brdo-Brijuni Process, which was launched in 2013 by Croatia and Slovenia.

Delegations from 12 countries will gather in Paris, six from EU countries (Croatia, Slovenia, Germany, France, Italy and Austria) and six from the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia). Croatian delegation will be headed by Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković, and will include Foreign Minister Miro Kovač and Economy Minister Tomislav Panenić.

The meeting will discuss the progress made so far in two areas: connecting transport and energy infrastructure in the Western Balkans in order to stimulate economic cooperation, as well as the initiatives for young people in order to increase their mobility within the region and the EU with a view to improve their prospects for employment and strengthen their role as a factor in the accession of their countries to the European Union.

During the meeting, the six countries of the Western Balkans will sign a treaty establishing the Regional Youth Cooperation Office. The Office will be based in Tirana, and half of its budget will be financed by the six signatory countries and the other half by international financial institutions and the European Commission. The initiative was launched by prime ministers of Serbia and Albania at a summit in Berlin in 2014.

The summit will also discuss the European perspective of the countries of Southeast Europe and the challenges faced by these countries in the context of the refugee crisis, the fight against terrorism and radicalization. Also, economy ministers will participate in an economic forum where they will be joined by representatives from the business community to discuss investment opportunities and business climate.


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