MRF / Renew Europe MEP Ilhan Kyuchyuk, the European Parliament’s Permanent Rapporteur on the Republic of North Macedonia, held a virtual conference on “The Western Balkans beyond 2020: Actions and decisions in times of pandemic”.
“The topic of today’s conference is relevant because 2020 was a key year for the EU, despite the crisis caused by COVID-19. In a situation of global secrecy, the EC initiated dialogues and supported the regions of the Western Balkans with financial support of 3.3 billion euros. This means that the region is not polluted, that the EU is set according to a planned plan for its integration. The big idea of the EU is contained in the word ‘transformation’, which is based on the digital and green economy. “, said the MEP at the opening of the conference.
In his introductory remarks, Kyuchyuk emphasized that the Western Balkans countries should be a strategic priority of the EU and outlined several important moments ahead for the region: “The first is the Berlin Process, which will take place on November 10, where Bulgaria and North Macedonia will meet together and will come up with specific proposals. And the second, the General Affairs Council meeting where key decisions are expected to pave the way for the first intergovernmental conference. It will be given the green light to start negotiations with the Republic of North Macedonia and Albania.”
According to EU Neighborhood and Enlargement Commissioner Oliver Varhei, the Western Balkans have been a priority for the European Commission since the beginning of its term.
“The future of the region is in the European Union – it is in their interest as well as ours. In this regard, the 2020 enlargement package, which we adopted together with the Economic and Investment Plan, provides a detailed overview of the state of major reforms. It provides these guidelines for priority reforms that remain at the heart of the EU accession process.”
MRF Chairman Mustafa Karadayi also took part in the event, saying the EU’s enlargement policy aims to unite European countries in a common political and economic project.
“It is a geostrategic investment in a stable, strong and united Europe, based on common values and offering democratic governance and respect for fundamental rights.”
He recalled that during the two liberal governments, in which the MRF played a key role as a coalition partner, Bulgaria has fulfilled its strategic goals – membership in NATO and the EU. Karadayi also pointed out that Bulgaria’s Euro-Atlantic path was opened after the peaceful transition from totalitarianism to democracy, thanks to the unique Bulgarian ethnic model, whose architect is Dr. Ahmed Dogan.
Bujar Osmani, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of North Macedonia, Sokol Dedja, Deputy Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Albania, MEPs, experts, representatives of the diplomatic corps and the media also took part in the discussion organized by the Bulgarian MEP.