Tuesday, 28 May 2013, Ohrid
FINAL PRESS CONFERENCE OF THE PRESIDENT VELJANOSKI AT THE 10TH CONFERENCE OF THE PRESIDENTS OF PARLIAMENT OF SEECP- FINAL REMARKS
Distinguished representatives of the media,
In the past two days you have had the opportunity to follow the 10th Conference of the Presidents of Parliaments of the South-East Europe Process of Cooperation and in this direction, allow me to share few brief remarks.
In accordance with the determination for realization of the declared intentions from the previous conferences in practice, this Conference is a conference of the continuity of the present, former and future presidency. Thus, we are represented at today’s press conference- the president of the National Assembly of Serbia, Mr. Nebojša Stefanović; the President of the House of Representatives, Mr. Valeriu Stefan Zgonea and the President of the Senate of Romania, Mr. Florin Constantinescu. The reaffirmation of the functioning of the Troika is especially important in the present phase of transformation and institutionalization of the regional parliamentary cooperation. It should provide us a long period of focus on commonly harmonized determinations.
Why do we need new, higher form of cooperation?
Our region, due to well known reasons, started, with delay, and insufficiently developed the mutual cooperation, spirit of understanding, mutual support and solidarity, which are characteristics for almost all regions in Europe. The Nordic Council, Parliament of Benelux, before and after the 90s, the Parliamentary Assembly of CEI, Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation, Baltic Parliamentary Assembly and others were established long ago. We have started the cooperation in this same period, but it remained as annual meeting of Presidents of Parliament and declarations which were not sufficiently valorised and competitive as projects. That is why the Working Group was established in order to propose modalities for the future cooperation.
After activities of three years, 10 meetings, the Woking Group, in an open and constructive atmosphere, applying the principle of consensus, managed to harmonize several documents which are the basis for the establishment of the new regional parliamentary body.
We expect that the Parliamentary Assembly of SEECP will contribute in the promotion of the cooperation and coordination of the efforts of the Parliaments of the participate states for transformation of the region into an area of peace, stability, solidarity and good neighbourly cooperation in the interest of our citizens states, as well as Europe as while. Guided by the principle of regional ownership and considering the future of all SEE countries is in the European Union, we expect the parliamentary assembly to act in direction of:
- Initiating different forms of exchange of experiences from the area of legislation, harmonization of the legislation with the Acquis, coordination of the practices, opinions regarding the Government dimension and strengthening the dialogue in the civil society
- Exercising the role of an umbrella in the context of achieving synergy in the activities of the regional initiatives and forms of cooperation connected with: economy, infrastructure and energy, justice, internal affairs and safety cooperation, social development, education, research and science.
- Motivation, monitoring and scrutinizing the realization of the goals and priorities defined by the rotating Presidency of SEECP and the Regional Cooperation Council, as an institutional structure for transformation of the political declarations and decisions into concrete projects and programs.
- Strengthening the parliamentary diplomatic activities and connections with the regional, European and international organizations, initiatives and foundations.
We don not have an illusion that this can be realized immediately, but one thing is certain- the future generations in the globally connected world, should be left with a neighbourhood of mutual understanding, support, cooperation if we wish to seize the benefits of the geopolitical, economic and cultural connection, decreasing and surpassing the knots.
I would finalize my address with a famous saying that the path of thousand miles starts with the first step. We consider that this step on parliamentary basis will be made through the Joint Statement for the new phase in our mutual cooperation, summed up in the preparedness for the establishment of the Parliamentary Assembly of SEECP.