Regional PMs: Stability crucial for investment

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development brought together in London on Monday seven prime ministers (PMs) from the Western Balkans, Tanjug said.

Source: Tanjug
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Representatives of the international community, international financial institutions and potential investors also gathered for a day-long conference on investing in the Western Balkans.

Participants of the conference discussing opportunities for cooperation and partnerships to facilitate investments in the Western Balkans said that stability and regional cooperation are crucial to economic development and presenting the region as an investment destination.

Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dačić presented Serbia's results in creating a climate favorable for business and investment, pointing out that no project can be completed without stability in the region.

Pointing out the importance of good-neighborly cooperation, Dačić stressed that “we need to better organize among ourselves to pursue our joint interests.”

European Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule officially presented for the first time today a new model of investment approved by the European Commission (EC) - a new approach to investing in the Western Balkans to pull the region out of the economic crisis.

“As Europe shows the first signs of emerging from the crisis, this is a key moment for the Western Balkans to seek to attract more investment,” Fuele said, adding that the new approach "is about building a common understanding between leaders of these countries and potential investors on the priorities for economic reform."

It means that the countries of the Western Balkans, with the help of experts from the EC, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the EBRD, need to adopt their own action plans for economic reform in order to create a favorable investment climate, said Fule.

“Reforms of public finances and of labor market institutions and reduction of administrative burdens for businesses should be priorities. Investments in education, skills and research also need to be high on the agenda,” Fule said.

“Countries will also be asked to draw up action plans on public financial management. Progress here will open up the possibility of sector budget support under the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) - IPA II,” Fule said.

Fuele urged the investors taking part in today’s event to take the opportunity to set out the areas on which they would want governments to focus to make the investment climate in the Western Balkans region more attractive.

Participants in the prime ministers' session included Edi Rama, prime minister of Albania, Vjekoslav Bevanda, chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Zoran Milanović, prime minister of Croatia, Hashim Thaci, prime minister of Kosovo, Nikola Gruevski, prime minister of Macedonia, Milo Djukanovic, prime minister of Montenegro and Ivica Dačić.

The event, held under the Gymnich formula, brought together over 500 delegates.

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