- Published: 08.11.2019.
European perspective necessary for the stability and economic development of Southeast Europe
Western Balkan countries, aspiring for European Union membership, are putting their hopes in Croatia's presidency of the Council of the EU in the first half of 2020, and are hoping that North Macedonia and Albania will be given a greenlight for opening accession talks before the Zagreb summit in May.
These hopes were expressed at a meeting on the European prospects of southeastern European countries in Geneva on Friday.The meeting, organised by the World Economic Forum (WEF), brought together heads of state or government and ministers from Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia and Turkey.
During the event, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said that "Croatia intends to help its neighbours" and that it would be ideal to reach a consensus on opening accession negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania by May.
"We are neither excessively optimistic nor enthusiastic. Nevertheless, this process needs to move forward. Without membership prospects we cannot count on accelerated economic development, true democratic values, cooperation, and accordingly, further strengthening of stability and security of our immediate neighbourhood," said Plenkovic.