The Slovenia Times

Balkan Leaders to Discuss Region's Future in Dubrovnik


The special guest of the strategic meeting of leaders of countries in SE Europe this year will be German Chancellor Angela Merkel, while the main topic will be EU integration.

Along with the hosts, the informal meeting will feature Albanian President Bujar Nishani, Montenegro's Filip Vujanović, Kosovo's Atifete Jahjaga, Macedonia's Gjorge Ivanov and Serbian head of state Tomislav Nikolić, as well as members of the Bosnian presidency Bakir Izetbegović, Željko Komšić and Nebojša Radmanović.

The heads of the countries in the region first met in this form on 25 July last year in Brdo pri Kranju, Slovenia, when French President Francois Hollande attended.

French state secretary for EU affairs Harlem Desir will be on hand this time and attendance has also been confirmed for EU Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger.

A political debate at the meeting is expected to stress the commitment to a European future for the Western Balkans and the importance of regional cooperation. A proposal is also expected that an EU-Western Balkans summit be organised in 2015, Pahor's office wrote in a press release.

A debate on infrastructure projects will focus on the Adriatic-Ionian motorway and the Munich-Istanbul railway route, where Slovenia will highlight its interest to have it pass through Ljubljana. A discussion will follow on energy security and efficiency and the energy plans for the future development of the region.

The Brdo Process, started in 2010 by Pahor in the capacity of PM and his Croatian counterpart Jadranka Kosor, was on the verge of dying off after initial attempts to organise it a prime ministerial and ministerial level, but Pahor and Josipović decided to restore it at the level of heads of state last year.


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