October 14, 2013

Brussels, President of Montenegro with the President of the European Council
At the beginning of his several-days visit to Brussels, the President of Montenegro Filip Vujanović met today with the President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy.

The President expressed his pleasure of meeting with President Rompuy today. “It was an opportunity to inform him on the Montenegro’s progress in the field of European integration and to express my pleasure in this regard. We are waiting now for the opening of chapters 23 and 24 and I think it will be a new contribution on our European path. It will be very important to Montenegro as well as to the countries of the region and it will represent a new stimulus giving them a new dynamics on the European path. It will be important to the EU as well, sending a message that the enlargement process is still ongoing”, the President said.

President Vujanović emphasized that he informed President Rompuy on the initiative of the presidents of Slovenia and Croatia on holding the joint meeting with the Western Balkan countries, on which occasion a very successful meeting took place in Slovenia with the President of France François Hollande taking part in this meeting.

“The Brdo process aims at encouraging the European integration of the Western Balkan countries, supporting regional projects and facilitating of solving open issues in our region. President Hollande presented encouraging attitude of France towards the European prospects of the Western Balkan countries and expressed support to regional projects and solving the open issues in the region through agreements. I am very satisfied with this meeting and I believe that the next meeting, which will take place in Croatia, will be a further support to this initiative.”

The President thanked President Rompuy for his personal contribution as well as for the European Council’s contribution to the Montenegro’s path to the EU.

The President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy expressed his pleasure at the visit of President Vujanović which takes place immediately before the presentation of the EC annual progress report on Montenegro and other countries of the Western Balkans.

“The most part of our talks was devoted to the assessment of the progress made and challenges. I congratulated President Vujanović for the overall progress Montenegro made in the European integration process. I welcomed the recent adoption of the constitutional changes in the direction of strengthening the independence of the judiciary because the legal certainty is irreplaceable element of a democratic state. It guarantees the right to the citizens, security of doing business and contributes to the promotion of the investments and economic development. We talked about the advantages of opening chapters 23 and 24 which will enable further progress of Montenegro in these areas. The broad consensus amongst political parties in Montenegro on European integration and key reforms related to the EU are important and valuable advantage”, Rompuy emphasized.

He stated that he talked with President Vujanović on importance of the reforms of the public administration in order to improve its transparency and efficiency. This is crucial in order to ensure the trust of the citizens in state institutions. “We have also talked about the freedom of the media and agreed that the threats and attacks on the journalists should be completely investigated. This year is important for the enlargement process in the Balkans. Croatia became a full-fledged EU member as of 1 July, and the agreement between Serbia and Kosovo put European prospects of Belgrade and Pristina into a new framework. The progress of Montenegro and a consensus amongst political parties and citizens of Montenegro with regard to the EU accession, as well as a constructive role Montenegro plays in the region will undoubtedly encourage other countries of the Balkans on their path towards the EU”.

In the end, Van Rompuy once again thanked President Vujanović for the visit and the efforts made for the promotion of enlargement process, expressing a belief that the benefits of the reforms implemented by Montenegro will be mostly enjoyed by its citizens and a society as a whole.

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