Governing Coalition Must Ensure Reform

It is essential that the members of the BiH Council of Ministers appropriate for themselves maximum freedom of action within the work plans that they have drawn up and adopted, and that they minimize the constraints placed upon them by short-term party political calculations, the High Representative and EU Special Representative, Christian Schwarz-Schilling, wrote in his weekly newspaper column.

“Many Ministers still act as if they were responsible to their parties first and the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina second,” the High Representative and EU Special Representative warned in an article which appeared today in Dnevni avaz, Nezavisne novine and Večernji list, and he called on the coalition parties “to give the Ministers they have nominated the freedom to deliver results,”

Mr Schwarz-Schilling stressed that despite a slow start caused by party infighting and despite the structural deficiencies that hamper the smooth and efficient running of the BiH government, the Council of Ministers led by Nikola Spiric has been able to achieve some successes in its first 100 days.

“Over the last three months Prime Minister Spiric and his team have played an important and constructive role in, for example, finding a solution for decertified police officers; bringing the new Regional Cooperation Council to Sarajevo; returning BiH airspace fully to the BiH civil aviation authorities and introducing greater participation by civic groups in public life. This Council of Ministers has also put in place agreements on social insurance with the Republic of Slovenia, on visa liberalisation and on the seats for the State’s Postal Agency, Civil Aviation Directorate and Flight Control as well as on the quality of liquid fuel.”

Commending the Prime Minister on the results that have been achieved, the High representative and EU Special Representative noted that “Mr. Spiric himself would be the first to agree that more results are needed and that the pace must be accelerated.”

Noting that the Council of Ministers has adopted and published its own work plan for 2007 and coordinated the adoption of work plans for each of the ministries, Mr Schwarz-Schilling said the BiH public would measure the performance of the Council of Ministers against the clear and measurable tasks that the government has set itself.

The full text of the High Representative and EU Special Representative’s weekly column can be accessed at and