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Thursday, 17. December 2015. 12:59

Eleventh SAPC meeting ends

Declaration with Recommendations adopted 

The eleventh SAPC meeting, co-chaired by President  of the Parliament of Montenegro Mr Ranko Krivokapić and Member of the European Parliament Ms Anneliese Dodds, ended by adoption of the Joint Declaration with Recommendations.

The meeting was marked by a discussion on the topic of sustainable development, protection of the environment and fiscal economy - particularly from the aspect of tax evasion at global and national level.  During the discussion devoted to ecological issues, the interlocutors stressed the importance of resolving the issue of air pollution in Pljevlja as well as issues related to the Ulcinj Saltworks, namely its value, status and possibilities - not only as the most important bird habitat, but also the place that has a great potential for economic valorisation. Speaking of the Saltworks, President  of the Parliament of Montenegro Mr Ranko Krivokapić reminded of Cervantes who visited Ulcinj, because the situation in Ulcinj very often looked like tilting at windmills, because those who tried to sold state property of the Saltworks illegally have not been punished.

During the discussion on economic issues, President of the Parliament of Montenegro Mr Ranko Krivokapić said that economic progress could not be achieved without the rule of law.  Mr Krivokapić assessed that tax evasion showed that “we have a weak state with powerful owners and individuals”, which is a typical Balkans disease.  It is particularly dangerous when unpaid tax amounts to more than half of public revenues, which is why the state has to borrow at high interest rates. The fact that interest rates are equal to social contributions show how difficult the situation is.  Interdependence of the lack of the rule of law and tax evasion is obvious, Mr Krivokapić underlined, adding that state maturation is best reflected through the efficient fight against high level corruption. The previous period was marked by the growth but not sufficient sustainable development.

Declaration from the eleventh SAPC meeting, inter alia, addresses the issues of the rule of law and electoral legislation, fundamental rights and freedoms, particularly media freedom, gender equality, position of disabled persons and environmental issues as well.

The Declaration welcomes opening of the new chapters in the negotiation process and the fact that the Parliament has retained the level of transparency, particularly emphasising the need for including political forces into sustainable dialogue and constructive cooperation in the Parliament.

The next SAPC meeting will be held in Montenegro, in the first half of 2016.