Thursday, 10 december 2015


Distinguished Members of the Parliaments,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear Participants,

  • Allow me first to express my gratitude to our host, the Parliament of the Republic of Macedonia, for their hospitality and excellent organization of this very important event.
  • We can, probably, all agree that we are going to leave a difficult year behind us. The current, mostly unfortunate, events demonstrate that there is still a call for Europe: a call, which cannot be ignored by organisations which have been created to promote a steady European integration process. The CEI is fully committed to contributing to reaching this goal even in this turbulent period.
  • During this year, issues concerning the migration process, climate change problems made us realize that the searching for solutions to these challenges cannot be postponed anymore, they need to be addressed immediately. The CEI, given its unique geographical position and operational approach to regional cooperation, also intends to offer its contribution to analyzing and (hopefully) to easing the above-mentioned problems. In this context, I would like to draw your kind attention to some latest actions which were jointly elaborated by the Secretariat and the current Macedonian CEI Presidency.       
  • Following the recommendations adopted by the CEI Ministers for Foreign Affairs at their meeting in Ohrid this June, an Extraordinary Call for Proposals was launched for covering migration issues.Public and private institutions registered in a CEI Member State as well as international and regional organizations were invited to apply. Proposals needed to focus on capacity building by transferring and sharing know-how, in particular from EU CEI Member States to non-EU CEI Member States. The implementation period will be next year, 2016.  I would point out that the Call had a quite success: we have received 20 project proposals, out of which 11 were eligible, and approximately EUR 450.000 will be involved or mobilized on international and regional level for this important issue.
  • In November, and underline, before the Paris Summit, an international CEI Ministerial Conference on Climate Change was held in Skopje, in which more than 150 participants exchanged experiences and views on the challenges how to face a low-carbon growth.
  • And last but not least, very soon, in mid-December, again here in Skopje, an International Conference will be held with the title: “Migration and Refugee Flows in Transit Countries: Security Implications”. All these activities were and are co-financed by the CEI Cooperation Fund.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Taking into account the above, let me conclude by stating, that, in order to confront the new challenges and to meet the needs of its Member States, the CEI is continuing to be flexible and ready to adapt to the sweeping changes. To this end, its mission is ever more focused on regional cooperation for European integration and on acting as a bridge between macro-regions. 

Thank you very much.