PM Marković: There is no alternative to Montenegro’s European integration process

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    Trieste, Italy (12 July 2017) – European integration of the Western Balkan countries is indisputable, it is our common goal and every country should demonstrate its own capacities and the current dynamics within this process, PM Duško Marković said after the Western Balkans Summit and encounter with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Trieste… PM Marković: There is no alternative to Montenegro’s European integration process

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    PHOTO: Statement by PM Duško Marković

    Trieste, Italy (12 July 2017) – European integration of the Western Balkan countries is indisputable, it is our common goal and every country should demonstrate its own capacities and the current dynamics within this process, PM Duško Marković said after the Western Balkans Summit and encounter with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Trieste.

    Pointing out the highlights of the talks with the German Chancellor Merkel, PM Marković stressed: “We have noted well developed bilateral relations and also expressed the willingness to improve our relations in the field of economic cooperation. I’ve invited German investors to demonstrate their capacities for investing in Montenegro, namely tourism, energy, food production, explaining that we are not interested only in money and investments, but also in transfer of know-how and exchange of good practices which could improve the overall business environment valuable for development and progress of the country. Chancellor Merkel pointed out very positive remarks regarding developments in Montenegro, delivering also various concrete suggestions related to making progress in the EU integration process. At the same time she voiced her personal and also support from the whole country.”

    Speaking of the messages from today’s Summit, Prime Minister Marković highlighted that the key leaders of the European countries are determined to support the EU integration process of the Western Balkans, without any limits or any hidden agenda.

    “European integration of the Western Balkans is indisputable, it is our common goal and every country should demonstrate its own capacities and the current dynamics within this process. Individual approach or approach conducted in accordance with the individual progress is a model we do not give up on. At the same time, we have clearly demonstrated that the economic cooperation in the region is necessary in order to overcome our economic, administrative and trade barriers and contribute to the growth of our economies, having in mind that economic criteria are one of the most important criteria in the European process,” PM Marković stressed, adding that the adoption of Declaration and Action Plan in four areas related to trade, investments, digital agenda and mobility will additionally improve cooperation in the region.

    In this context, Marković emphasised: “I want to send messages to the Montenegrin public that this agenda, through the Declaration, and through the Action Plan, is not an alternative process for the European perspective of Montenegro, given its integration. Montenegro was supported today. It is a country that has the least problems, and it produces the least problems, and our approach today was proactive and it was announced at the Summit.”

    When it comes to projects, the Prime Minister assessed it is not enough to talk about them, but they should be turned into results, as citizens expect it, stating that Chancellor Merkel also emphasised the importance of project realisation.

    “We need to be able to prepare projects and create better conditions for their realisation. We’ve benefited so far. At the Brussels Summit in Berlin, we received EUR 76 million from the European Union for infrastructure and railway, i.e. grants. It’s not just rhetoric. These are concrete resources and concrete projects. You see that in Montenegro we have done significant infrastructure projects using grants,” Marković said.

    Explaining the attitude towards Serbia’s proposal for a customs union in the region, PM Marković stressed that Montenegro has never been against it, but it has a constructive approach to the development of a model that it is sustainable rather than the point of new differences.

    “So, in this dialogue, we talked about a sustainable model that is now a model which implies a regional economic area within which we will work, on which we will work within the Action Plan we have signed. The customs union and the unique common Balkan market was a model that is not sustainable, which is not justified in every sense, in political and economic terms. We made it clear, and others agreed with us, but they did not say that. Finally, in the end of this process, others publicly said that this is not a model that is acceptable to everyone in the region. Therefore, Montenegro also has the courage and ability to timely point to something that is not sustainable in the region, but to contribute to models that will improve the region and create new cohesion, and not the point of disintegration,” Marković concluded.

    Source: Government of Montenegro