Principal Deputy High Representative and Brčko District Supervisor Michael Scanlan met with Brčko authorities, officials and business community representatives to discuss their work to restore fiscal responsibility, develop infrastructure and stimulate growth of the private sector.
“While praising initiatives taken last year, Supervisor Scanlan underscored that much work remains and that the tempo of work has to be accelerated. In a year of elections, there is no better way, he underscored, for elected officials to show their value to the voters than to produce outputs for the community. He looks forward to seeing the Government and the Assembly actively working for the good of the community until the last day in office,” reads the press release.
Last year’s adoption of the new Law on Budget established the requirements for the responsible and targeted use of public revenues. The launching of the port modernization project opened the door to key investments in infrastructure development. The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Brčko District Government and Studen Holding triggered activities aimed at improving the overall business climate.
“While the 2019 achievements are important in and of themselves, their benefit will only be felt if Brčko authorities keep their focus on reforms and accelerate activities that put the citizens interests first. To claim success, they will need to adopt the 2020 Budget pursuant to the new budget law and no later than 31 March as a signal of good governance and responsibility for unimpeded work of District institutions. A necessary complementary step to strengthening fiscal responsibility is the adoption of a new Law on Associations and Foundations, which should happen this spring. Furthermore, Brčko District needs to begin implementing this year vital infrastructure projects such as the Brčko Port, Brčko-Gunja Bridge and water supply. Last but not least, additional concrete steps need to be taken to ease doing business in Brčko and thus strengthen the private sector as the engine of growth”, Supervisor Scanlan notes.
Public safety and the inclusion of all Brčko citizens, especially national minorities, are areas that need further engagement. In that regard, Brčko District needs a Law on Public Gatherings that will bring the District in line with best practices in modern democratic societies, along with a Law on National Minorities that will facilitate proper inclusion of all Brčko residents. The Supervisor also welcomed the discussions this week on combating corruption between the FBI/U.S. Embassy’s Office of the Legal Attaché and the Police of Brčko District of BiH and the Office of the Prosecutor of Brčko District of BiH.
“Should Brčko District authorities deliver on this work plan, then 2020 will be the year of tangible results, and with that the return of hope that the District’s future is one of prosperity, and thus give citizens, especially the young generation, reason to stay and be part of this exciting future”, Scanlan concluded./ibna