Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina have opened the joint road border crossing Vraćenovići - Deleuša, on the road Nikšić - Bileća, thanks to the financial support by the European Union of worth €2 million. The red ribbon was cut by the Prime Minister of Montenegro Duško Marković, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina Zoran Tegeltija, and the Head of Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro Oana Cristina Popa.
The joint border crossing has three lanes in each direction plus one lane for trucks in each direction. Customs control is on each side and that of the police control is a joint one. The officials said that the functioning of joint border crossings will facilitate and accelerate the movement of passengers and goods, achieve significant savings and strengthen relations between the two countries.
"This border crossing is our joint contribution to European commitments and European standards. Through the concept of integrated border management, the fight against organised crime, illegal migration, drug trafficking and arms trafficking will be even stronger and more effective. As of today, the citizens of Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and our joint guests, will travel more comfortably. By faster control and simplification of border checks, faster and easier flow of goods, our two countries will reduce both teh waiting time and unnecessary costs. Modern border infrastructure, and modern technology and procedures at the Schengen level lead to further strengthening of intensive communication, increase in the volume of trade, but also increase in tourist traffic," the Prime Minister of Montenegro noted.
The Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina Zoran Tegeltija said that this was another in a series of joint projects of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro with the European Union.
"I am sure that this is not the last and that even larger successfully realised joint projects will follow in the coming years. I would first like to address the border police officers of Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as the customs officers of B&H and the customs officers of Montenegro. For more than 20 years, you have been enabling the unhindered movement of people and goods in this area, enabling our economies to cooperate, enabling our citizens to communicate with each other. Your work in the past 20 years has taken place in inhumane and poor conditions. But that didn’t stop you from doing your job successfully. Consider this facility a kind of gratitude for what you have done," the Chairman of the B&H Council of Ministers said.
The Head of Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro Oana Cristina Popa reminded that the EU supported Montenegro with €20 million to make its borders safer and more efficient, as outlined in the country’s national integrated border management strategy.
"We contributed with €2 million towards the construction of the border crossing Vraćenovići-Deleuša. Improving inter-connectivity in this region is a big priority for the EU. The European Commission recently presented the new Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans. We will mobilise up to €9 billion of funding for investments in the areas of transport, energy, green and digital transition, to create sustainable growth and jobs. EU investments bring concrete benefits only if they are followed by thorough reforms, as good governance is the foundation for sustainable economic growth and new jobs," Ambassador Popa said.
The construction of the joint border crossing Vraćenovići - Deleuša began on 27 February 2020 after Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina determined the locations of future joint border crossings. According to the agreement, in addition to the joint border crossing Vraćenovići - Deleuša, there will be a border crossing Šćepan Polje - Hum on the route Plužine - Foča, while in B&H there will be a joint border crossing Zupci - Sitnica, on the route Trebinje - Herceg Novi, and Klobuk - Ilino Brdo on the route Trebinje - Nikšić.