RCC host conference on the Western Balkans’ European perspective

Panel ‘Strengthening the European perspective through regional cooperation’ at ‘The Western Balkans’ European Perspective through Growth, Good Governance and Enhanced Cooperation’; Photo: RCC / Bojana Zorić

BRUSSELS – Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union together with the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted a conference on the Western Balkans’ European perspective through growth, good governance and enhanced cooperation, in Brussels today.

The Conference featured two panel discussions, the first one ‘European perspective of the Western Balkans – state of play and potential for improvement‘ dedicated to the transformation of the Western Balkans, while the second panel ‘Strengthening the European perspective through regional cooperation‘ focused on the regional response to the proposals in the Commission’s Communication on the Enlargement for the Western Balkans.

Talking about European perspective of the Western Balkans, during the introductory remarks in the panel discussion, the RCC Secretary General, Goran Svilanović said that the region has shown its dedication and willingness to progress on the EU path, stressing that there was a lot more to be done and the action dynamics should be maintained.

„The region cannot afford to lose more time on misunderstandings and lack of action. The latest EU Enlargement Strategy for the Western Balkans offers a lot but based on deed and merit. Towards that end, the RCC, together with the region’s leaders, has set and ambitious Multi-Annual Action Plan on Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) that has already yielded tangible results, alike recent, very successful 1st Western Balkans Digital Summit held in Skopje last week, and many more in the pipeline, to be presented at the upcoming Summits in Sofia and Skopje.“

The panellists at the conference included RCC, diverse senior representatives of the European institutions, regional organisations, civil society, national and local administrations.

The conference represented a forum for valuable exchange of views on the how to strengthen EU support to the region and the ways for economies of the region to respond to existing challenges and take full advantage of the proposals included in the latest EU Enlargement Strategy for the Western Balkans.