Ministry of Economic Relations and Regional Cooperation of the Republic of Srpska, in cooperation with the European Committee of the Regions, held a meeting of the Working Group on the Western Balkans of the European Committee of the Regions today, Wednesday (25 October 2017), at the Administrative Centre of the Government of the Republic of Srpska in Istočno Sarajevo.
Topics of the meeting included cross-border cooperation, EU pre-accession funds and economic cooperation between local self-government units of the Republic of Srpska and FBiH.
In her rendition, the RS Minister of Administration and Local Self-Government Lejla Rešić spoke about the commitment of the Government of the Republic of Srpska to European integration and role of the local self-government units.
'On many occasions, the Republic of Srpska has demonstrated its commitment to the process of European integration, and I can say that it is leading in fulfilling the obligations arising from that process,' said Rešić.
According to her, the Republic of Srpska also recognises the irreplaceability of local authorities and local self-government units in the system of governance of a modern state.
The Chair of the Committee of the Regions Franz Schausberger thanked the Government of the Republic of Srpska for the support in organizing the 21st meeting of the Working Group and highlighted the importance of discussion about the topics of this meeting which are of immediate importance for life of the citizens.
Head of the EU Delegation and EU Representative in BiH Lars-Gunnar Wigemark underscored that BiH had to be in focus of the European Union and that it deserved to become an EU member together with other countries of the region, because of its key position for the stability of the Western Balkans.
Participant in the first session on cross-border cooperation and IPA funds, Assistant minister for European integration at the Ministry of Economic Relations and Regional Cooperation of the Republic of Srpska Radmila Dragišić spoke about the need for a consistent application of the coordination mechanism in the process of European integration in BiH, and pointed out the necessity for a balanced EU financial support to various levels of government.
Several mayors also took part in the meeting of the Working Group on the Western Balkans, including Luka Petrović from Trebinje, Milenko Đaković from Prijedor, Mićo Mićić from Bijeljina, Mato Zovko from Žepče and Ljubo Bešlić from Mostar.