PRESS RELEASE 21 November 2022
The first meeting of Political Directors of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) was held in an online format under Montenegro’s Chairmanship-in-Office.
The meeting, which was chaired by Mr Radovan Bogojević, Acting Director General for Multilateral Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was attended by 13 National Coordinators of all SEECP participants; Mr Amer Kapetanović, Head of Political Department at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), and representatives of the European Commission.
The participants supported the calendar of activities and priorities of Montenegro’s CiO under the motto A SEE of culture, a SEE of cooperation, as manifold cultural ties serve as a solid ground for further advancement of partnerships of the economies of the region.
It was also presented that during its one-year SEECP CiO, Montenegro will work on strengthening security cooperation in the light of increasingly complex geopolitical environment caused by Russian aggression against Ukraine. Likewise, it was stated that many political, economic and security repercussions require joint actions and coordinated regional approach. European partners stressed the importance of strengthening resilience of institutions to cyber-attacks, reiterating their support to Montenegro in facing this challenge. The Regional Cyber Security Centre, which will be opened in Podgorica, will have an important role, including through development of regional capacities for combating cyber threats.
The participants conveyed expectation that the mobility agreements recently signed at the Berlin Process Summit, which are the cornerstone of Common Regional Market (CRM) and an incentive for future integration into the EU single market, will soon be ratified. Their implementation will create many opportunities and facilitate mobility as the citizens will travel throughout the Western Balkans only with their ID, while doctors of medicine, dentists and architects will have their higher education qualifications recognised in the region.
In the context of energy security and sustainability, the need for exploring the untapped potentials under the same roof was underlined, including increased investments in infrastructure and new sustainable energy sources. It was jointly stressed that the 1 billion euro Western Balkans support package which was announced by the President of European Commissions Ursula fon der Lajen, is of great significance for mitigating the effects of energy crisis and strengthening resilience of our energy sectors.
Opinions on the 2030 Strategy – a development plan for South East Europe, were exchanged at the meeting, indicating the role of private and financial sectors in sustainable development, financing development and green transformation. The participants discussed the issues of relevance for the functioning of the RCC, as SEECP executive body.
MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
21 November 2022