European Western Balkans
Regional cooperation

Bregu: The only way to prevent shortages of medical equipment or food in WB is a Green Corridor

Majlinda Bregu; Photo: Tanjug

TIRANA – The Secretary-General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, spoke last night at the Tirana based RTV Klan’s Opinion show, about the major distress in the region after the European Commission Implementing Regulation which imposes new rules, for the export of personal protective equipment and medical equipment outside the EU, stated in a press release.

She explained the situation and the need for the Western Balkans Green Corridor, on which the RCC, together with the region and other relevant stakeholders, is currently working on.

“The export of personal protective equipment from the EU to the Western Balkans (WB) is not halted but because of the tremendous needs in all EU now an export authorization should be issued before such equipment is exported outside EU. But, will this ease the things for us? No! But we are all living and trying to deal with a crisis. And that’s why we need to keep the corridor opened and functional between the EU and WB at least, for food, medicines and medical equipment in the first place. We have to coordinate better,” Bregu said.

RCC Secretary-General emphasized that for this reason, they have started a consultative process with all regional partner organizations and WB so that joint regional actions are initiated to mitigate the consequences of an outbreak of pandemic caused by COVID-19.

Bregu said that the pertinent organizations have already started to envisage possible smart management of pre-arrival data of goods (import, export and transit), and facilitated procedures for priority lanes for food, and medicine to be defined based on electronic data exchange of pre-arrival information on essential goods.

“If a truck has already undergone sanitary control in the EU member state where it departed, there is no need to make again such control in the WB crossing points. This will make sure that medicines goods and essential services continue to flow in the WB market. This is the only way to prevent shortages of medical equipment or food,” Bregu said.

The governments have already started to calculate the costs of the pandemic which will hamper Western Balkan’s economies, and started preparing plans for the revitalization, she concluded.

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