At the beginning of September 2023, the Brdo-Brioni Process Summit was held in Skopje, North Macedonia, which brought together the leaders of the countries of the Western Balkan region, as well as the presidents of Croatia and Slovenia. This year’s summit was also attended by the president of Montenegro. This and meetings and events similar to these gatherings are significant from several aspects, because the countries of the region have the opportunity to discuss common issues and challenges, but also offer a platform for deliberations on potential solutions and strategic actions that may be undertaken in the forthcoming period. Also, the events contribute to a greater connection and discussion of open issues between countries, so that any encouragement of constructive dialogue. Furthermore, these dialogic exchanges significantly contribute to the pursuit of viable solutions to the predicaments at hand. It also contributes to promotion of enhanced regional cooperation, which is a prerequisite for the successful implementation of EU integration.
At the Summit, the importance of EU integration of the Western Balkan countries and the need to implement reforms in order to speed up this process were pointed out. In addition to pointing out the need to speed up the EU integration process, the topics discussed at the Summit also refer to climate change and youth migration, i.e., policies and measures aimed at retaining young people in the countries of the region. The conclusions of this year’s discussion and dialogue were presented through the Skopje Declaration. What questions and conclusions are found in the Declaration? The Declaration emphasizes the commitment of the countries of the Western Balkans region to the intensification of the integration process, stressing that the goal of joining the EU is 2030 at the latest. prosperity, the functioning of democratic institutions, and public administration”. In order to improve the integration process, the Declaration pointed out the importance of regional cooperation, the importance of joint performance in relation to common problems and challenges.
In which direction is Montenegro going?
The issue of EU expansion has recently been significantly updated, taking into account the events on the international scene, first of all taking into account the war in Ukraine. Therefore, the discussion among EU members about the accession of candidate countries to the EU has increased. At the end of August this year, the President of France presented a proposal on multi-speed Europe, in relation to the EU enlargement. What about Macron’s proposal of multi-speed Europe? This proposal assumes of the need to apply a different approach taking into account the new circumstances, that is, it consists in reforming the integration process in the direction of speeding up the integration process for countries “who were favourable”, while a slower integration process would be foreseen for other countries.