Thursday, November 8, 2007


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 8,2007) – Implementation of police reform in accordance with the three EU principles, full cooperation with the Hague Tribunal, reform of the public broadcast system and the public administration are the four conditions Bosnia has to fulfill in order to sign a Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the European Union, the European Commission’s report on progress Bosnia has made during the last 12 months states.

Presenting this report at a press conference in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo,the Deputy Director of the European Commission’s General Directorate for Enlargement Jan Truszczynski said that Bosnia has done very little during the last year on fulfilling priorities from the European partnership document.

He said that reform process have stalled seriously and added that this is due to the rise in nationalistic rhetoric and the tense political atmosphere.

“Bosnia has still not been able to take full responsibility for managing processes in the country”, Truszczynski said and stressed that in the upcoming period Bosnia's political leaders need to achieve consensus on key issues.

He mentioned constitutional changes as one of those key issues. The European Commission has not set deadlines for these changes, but thinks that they should be made as soon as possible, Truszczynski added.

Truszczynski said that the European Commission welcomes the Mostar Declaration signed by the leaders of six political parties, but stressed that concrete steps need to be taken on the issue of police reform so that Bosnia is returned to the path of European integrations.

The European Commission’s report also mentions other priorities on which BiH needs to make progress, including the creation of a single economic space, freedom of movement of goods and persons, and social and economic reforms.

Truszczynski also mentioned several “bright spots” in the report. Besides progress on cooperation with the Hague Tribunal, the report also states that talks on the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the European Union have been completed in a professional and efficient way and that Bosnia has had constructive cooperation with countries in the region, as well as that the strengthening of the economy and macroeconomic stability has continued.

Progress has been also made on introducing European standards in the field of transport, education, relaxing the visa regime and the asylum policy.

The European Commission stated that it will continue to strengthen the European perspective of the countries in the region, to support regional cooperation and strengthen support for reform processes through efficient use of pre-accession funds.

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