The Slovenia Times

Cerar says preserving W Balkan's EU accession prospects a must


In the discussion on the Berlin Process and the EU accession prospects of the Western Balkans, Cerar expressed Slovenia's support for the enlargement process and the expectation that the EU will take strategic decisions regarding the accession negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania this year.

The Berlin Process is an initiative including six Western Balkan candidate countries (Montenegro, Serbia, North Macedonia, Albania) or potential candidates (Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo) and the EU members Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, France, Greece, Germany, Italy, Poland, Slovenia and the UK.

According to a press release from the Foreign Ministry, Cerar said young people from the region should be provided with opportunities to develop their potential. He pointed to Slovenia's initiative Positive Agenda for the Youth of Western Balkans, which has been adopted by the European Commission.

The minister said that the agenda needed to be upgraded, but also noted that a regional office for youth had been established within the Berlin Process on the basis of the initiative, the ministry added.

Cerar also stressed that the Berlin Process must not be and must not become a surrogate for the enlargement process, but that it must remain a platform which promotes enlargement, and a political process supporting concrete projects.

The initiative should support projects in energy, digitalisation and infrastructure, he said, pointing to sustainable development and green technologies as instruments of the future for creating an inclusive and open society based on the EU values.

Tomorrow, Cerar will join Prime Minister Marjan Ĺ arec at the sixth summit of the Berlin Process, which is expected to discuss economy, inter-connectivity, youth policies, entrepreneurship and a multi-year plan for the regional economic area.


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