Borissov: After 15 years Western Balkans back on the EU agenda

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, whose country Bulgaria is current EU’s presidency-holder, hosts Thursday EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia, said that the Western Balkans integration in the EU is put back on the agenda after 15 years.

“Everyone understands the importance of the Western Balkans and therefore 15 years after the Thessaloniki meeting we have the opportunity today to discussed about this topic” Borissov said prior to the top officials meeting.

He underlined that in the frameworks of the summit also representatives of the banks will also participate showing interest in joint infrastructure projects.

Regarding the negotiations between Macedonia and Greece over the name dispute, he said: “The less we talk, the greater the chances.”

The meeting between Macedonian and Greek PMs Zoran Zaev and Alexis Tspiras is ongoing in an attempt to approximate positions on the name issue, including the range of its use and the constitutional changes.

Macedonian government delegation led by PM Zoran Zaev will attend the summit whose topic will be “Connectivity” – in terms of transport, energy and digital infrastructure, education, and other aspects.

The EU-Western Balkans Summit brings together the Heads of State or Government of the Member States of the European Union and their counterparts from the Western Balkan region.

It is chaired by the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, who represents the EU together with the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker.

PM Zaev accompanied by Deputy PM for European Affairs Bujar Osmani and FM Nikola Dimitrov participates in the activities of the summit’s official agenda.

The aim of the summit is to provide a clear European perspective to the Western Balkans, without creating false expectations. The EU accession process for each country will continue to proceed along the established path, and each country’s progress will be evaluated individually and objectively according to the accession criteria.