Tusk and Markovic noted that Montenegro is progressing in the process of European integration, as well as successfully implementing obligations arising from the integration process and thus sets a good example for the other Western Balkan countries.
“Montenegro is, under your leadership, the leading state in the integration process. There is no doubt that you are in good negotiating shape and are presenting a positive example. Your work and your success are not only important for Montenegro, but also for the European Union, as it shows that in a complex situation and in a complicated region, progress and positive shifts are possible,” Tusk said.
Markovic told Tusk that Montenegro is aware of the challenges and those segments of European integration where it is necessary to work even harder and more efficiently. Montenegrin Prime Minister praised the European Commission’s Report as a useful document for further improvement and acceleration of the country’s negotiating process.
“We have no reason to question either the methodology or the content of the Report, or to criticise the approach of the EU. On the contrary,” Markovic said, pointing out that in view of the forthcoming summit in Sofia, Montenegro sees the decision of the European Union to deal with the Western Balkans as a great opportunity for the entire region.
“After 15 years, we will again be with European leaders. The summit’s agenda has been set realistically and objectively. The region must use this opportunity,” Markovic asserted, adding that in the Western Balkans, thanks to frequent meetings between the leaders, a level of trust and understanding has been reached, and attitudes about priorities that primarily concern the development of infrastructure are converging.
Prime Minister Markovic expressed his special gratitude to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, and the Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, for their commitment to the Western Balkan region.