16 October 2015 The participants of the 7th Conference of Speakers of Parliament of the Countries of the Western Balkans
Monday, 19 October 2015
Deputy Speaker Becic at 7th Conference of Parliament Speakers of Western Balkan Countries
The Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, MA Igor Becic, took part in the 7th Conference of Speakers of Parliament of the Countries of the Western Balkans, on 16 October 2015, in Budapest, Hungary.
In the course of the first session “South East Europe on the path to the EU”, Deputy Speaker Becic said that close cooperation, joint efforts and mutual understanding would allow all the countries of South East Europe to use the region’s full potential and improve the living standards and overall prosperity of their own citizens and their neighbours. He stated that Serbia is committed to fully develop bilateral relations with its immediate neighbours and all the other countries of South East Europe. He said that the European Union is an important characteristic of regional cooperation and a strong cohesive factor which has recently been the provenance of the multilateral cooperation in the Balkans, and South East Europe in particular, all in the interest of the entire region: the neighbours’ reciprocal support because of the limited national markets, development of infrastructure, regulation of social and economic affairs, use of common resources. He said that Serbia’s active policy of international trust and fostering good-neighbourly ties and cooperation is in line with the country’s efforts on strengthening peace and stability in the region.
In the course of the second session “Current security challenges in South East Europe – possible solutions”, Deputy Speaker Becic spoke about the refugee and migrant policy in Europe, saying that the political action concerning refugee and migrant policy has long outgrown the national framework. He opined that the migration policy should be viewed globally, including cooperation and coordination among the countries of origin, transit and destinations. In that context, Serbia, as a Western Balkan country that sees in future in the European Union, is ready to push for a joint project of solidary refugee policy. He stressed that the countries need to join forces in order to find reasonable solutions at the level of Europe, and respect national interests without forgetting international obligations and the tenets of humanitarian law, solidarity, humanity, mercy and empathy.
At the Conference, there have been several official suggestions how to promote regional cooperation and the reform of regional institutions, as well as the integration of the region in the European Union. This is a new approach to regional cooperation and a future that would be grounded in renewing cultural, economic and political ties, overcoming the past and building relations suitable for future challenges, and most of all for the development of a new spirit of cooperation.
In conclusion, the Speaker of the Hungarian Parliament Laszlo Kover said that Hungary supports the integration of all the countries of the Western Balkans into the European Union which will greatly contribute to the stability and prosperity of the region of South East Europe, and that it opposes the introduction of new requirement for the EU accession of the Western Balkans.