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Thursday, 19. May 2016. 20:40

Twelfth meeting of the Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee begins

The meeting discussed - dynamics of negotiations, key aspects of the rule of law and respect of fundamental rights 

Day one of the Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee was marked by a discussion on the topics such as: dynamics of accession negotiations and relations between the European Union and Montenegro, particularly through the perspective of the rule of law and electoral legislation, respect of fundamental rights, gender equality and rights of the child.

The meeting was opened by SAPC Co-Chair Mr Ranko Krivokapić, who expressed pleasure over the results made by the Parliament of Montenegro in addressing the issue of restoring confidence in the election process, adding that the hard work in achieving that goal had just begun. He explained that legislation infrastructure was built, and that Montenegro in that way marked the last stage of achieving tangible results.

Co-Chair of the meeting Ms Anneliese Dodds, Head of the European Union Delegation, praised the initiatives launched for achieving better relations with neighbours, and stressed that in addition to achieving the rule of law and fight against corruption as key issues, it was necessary to pay attention to equal economic development and improvement of employment.

Deputy Prime Mr Duško Marković spoke on dynamics of negotiations on behalf of the Government of Montenegro, emphasising that Montenegro had opened two-thirds of two thirds of negotiation chapters, implemented nine of thirteen benchmarks, expecting that the remaining benchmarks would be fulfilled by the end of the year.  In addition, Mr Marković emphasised that the last semi-annual report on the implementation of action plans for chapters 23 and 24 indicated the greater degree of fulfilment of measures, while the performance reports of courts and prosecution for the previous year showed the progress at this plan.

On behalf of the Dutch Presidency of the Council of the European Union, Dutch Ambassador to Montenegro H.E. Mr Henk van den Dool said that the European Commission Report on Montenegro  and European Parliament Resolution pointed out the field where additional efforts were necessary, such as the electoral legislation, media freedom and fight against corruption. On behalf of the European Commission, Mr Mitja Drobnič, Head of the European Union Delegation to Montenegro spoke on Montenegro’s progress on its path to EU membership. He said that the implementation of the electoral legislation was of key importance, stressing that it was also important to make a step in the protection of environment.

Dialogue and compromise are foundations of any democracy, Mr Milutin Simović, Acting President of the Parliament of Montenegro, said among other things, stressing that those are the principles on which Montenegro would respond to all obligations within European and Euro-Atlantic integration.

The meeting also discussed the gender equality, particularly political and economic empowerment of women.

Twelfth SAPC meeting will be continued tomorrow, when harmonisation of joint declaration and adoption of recommendations are expected.