BRUSSELS – The future of the Western Balkans is an issue that is moving swiftly up the European agenda. But rising instability, territorial disputes and ethnic rivalries mean many in Europe fear a return to war and conflict in the region. And with more than one in five people unemployed, the region still has many reforms to make.
Democracy, peace and stability, as well economic development and integration in the Western Balkans, will be discussed at the annual event “Western Balkans at a crossroads“, now in its 18th year, organised by the Friends of Europe and its partners on December 5 in Brussels.
Some of the sessions will include topics such as peace, democracy and reconciliation, entrepreneurship in the Western Balkans and improving interconnectivity and economic development of local governments.
Key speakers of this event will be European Commission Director-General for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Christian Danielsson, Member of European Parliament Delegation for relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo Tanja Fajon, Prime Minister of Albania Edi Rama, Director for the Adriatic Sea Region at the European Investment Bank (EIB) Miguel Morgado, Senior Development Adviser, United States European Command (EUCOM) Andrew Plitt, Assistant Secretary General and Regional Director for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Ayşe Cihan Sultanoğlu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Goran Svilanović.