Montenegro Deputy Prime Minister Dritan Abazović travelled to the Republic of North Macedonia on an official visit, at the invitation of Deputy Prime Minister in charge of economic affairs Fatmir Bitići.
At the meeting between Abazović and Bitići, possibilities for improving economic and regional cooperation were discussed, especially in the field of tourism, trade and agriculture.
“Vice President Abazović stated that the experiences of North Macedonia in food production could be of use to Montenegro, suggesting that the two countries should collaborate on better product placement. Abazović indicated that the Western Balkans, in the aftermath of the health and economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, will have open perspectives and Montenegro and North Macedonia have great chances in that,” the Montenegrin government announced in a statement.
Deputy Prime Minister Abazović said that the countries of the Western Balkans should initiate a dialogue at the level of Deputy Prime Ministers, noting that he had no doubt about the full support of his colleague Bitići.
North Macedonian Deputy Prime Minister Fatmir Bitići said that the Berlin Process, in which Montenegro and North Macedonia have been working diligently to achieve the goals set at his initiative, has been important for the citizens and economies of the Western Balkans in recent years.
“The goal of the Common Regional Market is to strengthen economic cooperation between the countries in the region, increase competitiveness, but also to increase the attractiveness the region for the European Union market,” Bitići said at a press conference after the meeting.
He added that at today’s meeting with the Vice President of Montenegro, the economies of these countries, cooperation and the potential for its deepening were also discussed. “What we exchanged today is the commitment to strengthening economic cooperation between the two countries, which is in the common interest, alongside initiatives to tap evident potential for that cooperation,” Bitići said at the press conference.
He emphasized that what became clear in this period was that “we are strong as a system”. As he argued, the grey economy and the damage it causes are highlighted when the country is in crisis, adding that cooperation, open dialogue and constructive problem solving at the local and regional level are especially important in such a period.
The Deputy Prime Minister of North Macedonia stated that regional competitiveness should be the future of regional cooperation instead of regional antagonism. /ibna