Prime Minister of Montenegro Duško Marković was in Berlin on Friday where he met with Chancellor Angela Merkel upon her invitation to pay an official visit to Germany.
The two of them discussed how best to strengthen bilateral ties and co-operation with Merkel reiterating she also strongly supports the country’s accession to the bloc.
Marković underlined after their talks that Germany is a key partner for Montenegro and the wider region, that “understands well our needs and sees the unquestionable future of the entire Region in Europe. In this context, the Prime Minister assessed that the Berlin Process ‘enhanced our European vision and our European perspective, improved dialogue in the region and helped us build capacities and capabilities to solve open issues ourselves, without bringing them just at table to our partners’.”
Speaking about bilateral cooperation at the political level the Montenegrin head of government said: “Montenegro is ready to apply and respect the standards when it comes to the question of the development of democracy and the political system. In this sense, we have openly talked about the shortcomings and weaknesses at this time concerning the fight against organised crime and corruption: we strengthen the institutions, give them additional strength to do more in this plan, and rule of law is not a restriction for the development of Montenegro and its European perspective. I, personally and this Government, we are ready to make further step forward in this direction and we also requested expert support from the Chancellor and receive this support today and I believe that we will have a quick advisory position in one of our departments dealing with the issues of combating organised crime and corruption”.
German investment in Montenegro and the country’s EU membership perspective
“We want German investors in Montenegro”, stressed the small Adriatic nation’s PM, “not only for money, but for transferring knowledge and experience and good practices, and today we discussed creating conditions for German companies and German investors to be more present in sectors that are very important for our economy, primarily in energy, tourism, agriculture and some other sectors.
Montenegro is ready for a greater presence of German companies and German investors in Montenegro. Today we talked about energy as a resource in which there is room for serious cooperation, in which we need to provide a transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Germany’s experience in this process is relevant, and I believe that there is a time of greater confidence in our economic space, in our business environment, in the greater level of rule of law that is necessary for German investors and German companies, and that our economic cooperation will grow very rapidly in positive sense.”
An issue of great importance that was discussed and needs further attention is that of organised crime and corruption in Montenegro. The fight against has proven to be difficult, though not impossible. Still, since there are various “shortcomings and weaknesses” as Duško Marković put it, Germany and its know-how are badly needed.
Thus, after their meeting, the German Chancellor told the press “We will cooperate even more closely and we offer all possible assistance when it comes to implementing the rule of law and the fight against corruption.”
On the subject of Montenegro’s EU membership perspective, Merkel said that her meeting with Markovic was “a clear statement about Montenegro’s European perspective, and a confirmation that not only Montenegro has this perspective, but all the countries of the Western Balkans.”… / IBNA
Main Photo: German Chancellor Angela Merkel welcomes the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Duško Marković, Berlin, August 17, 2018