Montenegro – 2 new chapters opened

The sixth meeting of the Accession Conference with Montenegro at Ministerial level was held today in Luxemburg to open negotiations on Chapter 9 – Financial services and Chapter 21 – Trans-European networks. In addition, the Conference confirmed at Ministerial level the opening of Chapter 16 – Taxation, and of Chapter 30 – External relations, which were considered at the Accession Conference with Montenegro at Deputy Level, held in Brussels on 30 March 2015.

The European Union delegation was led by Mr Edgars Rinkēvičs, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Latvia. The Montenegrin delegation was led by Mr Igor Lukšić, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs and European Integration. The European Commission was represented by Mr Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood policy and Enlargement negotiations.

With today’s Conference, out of a total of 35 negotiation chapters, 20 chapters have now been opened for negotiations of which 2 chapters have already been provisionally closed. Further Accession Conferences will be planned, as appropriate, in order to take the process forward in the second half of 2015. The accession negotiations were launched in June 2012.

Chapters opened

Regarding the opening of negotiations on Chapter 9 – Financial services, and on Chapter 21 – Trans-European networks, the Union has closely examined Montenegro’s present state of preparations. On the understanding that Montenegro has to continue to make progress in the alignment with and implementation of the acquis in these chapters, the EU noted that there are benchmarks that need to be met for provisional closure of these chapters.

In addition, the EU underlined that it would devote particular attention to monitoring all specific issues mentioned in its common positions. Monitoring of progress in the alignment with and implementation of the acquis will continue throughout the negotiations. The EU will, if necessary, return to these chapters at an appropriate moment.

The benchmarks for each chapter opened are as follows:

Chapter 9 – Financial services

  • Montenegro demonstrates an advanced level of alignment with the acquis in the field of banking and financial conglomerates, notably in relation to capital requirements, supervision of financial conglomerates, deposit protection, reorganization and winding up of credit institutions and demonstrates that it will be ready to implement the acquis as of accession.
  • Montenegro demonstrates an advanced level of alignment with the acquis in the field of insurance and occupational pensions, notably as regards life insurance, reinsurance, insurance intermediation, motor vehicle liability insurance, Solvency II and Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision directive (IORPs) and demonstrates that it will be ready to implement the acquis as of accession.
  • Montenegro demonstrates an advanced level of alignment with the acquis in the field of financial market infrastructure, notably as regards settlement finality and financial collateral arrangements and demonstrates that it will be ready to implement the acquis as of accession.
  • Montenegro demonstrates an advanced level of alignment with the acquis in the field of securities markets and investment services, notably as regards Markets in Financial Instruments directive (MiFID), prospectus, transparency and market abuse and demonstrates that it will be ready to implement the acquis as of accession.
  • Montenegro demonstrates the robustness and independence of regulatory and supervisory institutions with an adequate administrative capacity for the implementation and enforcement of the aquis in the field of financial services.

Chapter 21 – Trans-European networks

  •  Montenegro and the European Commission have agreed on the future TEN-T network concerning Montenegro, according to Regulation (EU) No 1315/2013 on Union guidelines for the development of the trans-European transport network.
  • Montenegro and the European Commission have agreed on a list of priority projects in the transport sector in line with Regulation (EU) No 1316/2013 establishing the Connecting Europe Facility.
  • Montenegro demonstrates the institutional and administrative capacity needed to undertake the responsibilities referred to in Regulation (EU) No 1316/2013 establishing the Connecting Europe Facility.