Enhancing the role of parliaments in BiH in the EU integration context

BANJALUKA / SARAJEVO – Members of the Collegium of the parliamentary forum for European Integration have adopted today, in the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska, a joint statement supporting the signing of the concept of parliamentary cooperation mechanism in Bosnia and Herzegovina, for the issues related to the European integration process.

The statement was harmonized and accepted by the Chair of the Joint Commission for European Integration of the Parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Nikola Lovrinić, President of the Committee for European Integration of National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska, Branislav Borenović, the Chair of the House of Peoples of the Parliament of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Lidija Bradara and the Chair of the Commission for European Integration of the Brčko District Assembly, Srdjan Blažić.

It is agreed that the signing of this document represents a clear commitment and willingness of all four parliaments in Bosnia and Herzegovina to facilitate the realization of common objectives in the process of European Integration.

The statement expressed gratitude to the European Union for the implementation of the two-year twinning project “Enhancing the role of parliaments in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the EU integration context”, funded by EU IPA funds.

Recent decision of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina for submitting the EU membership application is welcomed, expressing agreement that this step represents willingness of Bosnia and Herzegovina to begin a new chapter in the integration process and a clear commitment to EU membership.

The statement welcomes executive institutions activities, considering the implementation of Action Plans for the realization of Reform Agenda, and invites those who have not yet drafted these documents to do so and start their implementation as soon as possible.

Activities of the competent institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina to establish a functional coordination mechanism in the process of European integration are also welcomed and supported.

In the context of opportunities and the importance of using resources within the framework of EU IPA funds, the statement welcomes all the steps taken so far, and the competent institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina at all levels are called for the implementation of activities aimed at informing the general public about the possibility of using these funds.

The statement welcomes the decision of the Joint Commission for European Integration of the Parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina regarding the organization of round tables, in cities and municipalities throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina, on current issues concerning EU integration, since Stabilisation and Association Agreement entered into force, and expressed agreement that participants of these events should be active.

The statement also welcomes activities of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, for constitution of a first joint body with the European Union, in the form of Parliamentary Committee for Stabilisation and Association, on the basis of SA Agreement. However, the statement regrets the lack of compromise on the content of Rules of Procedure of this Committee, between Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina and European Parliament and calls for harmonization of the text, so dialogue with European Parliament can be continued.

The statement greets the events held in Brusssels in December 2015, the first meeting of the Council for Stabilisation and Association and  the first meeting of the Committee for Stabilisation and Association between European Union and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Parliamentary forum on European Integration consists of: Joint Commission for European Integration of the Parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Committee for European Integration and Regional Cooperation of the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska, Commission for European Integration of the House of Representatives, Commission for European Integration of the House of Peoples and the Commission for European Integration of the Brcko District Assembly.