Bosnia and Herzegovina needs a state level government as a matter of utmost priority, EU officials told BiH parliamentarians during their two-day visit to Brussels – a part of the EUSR’s Parliament for Europe initiative. The EU wants BiH as a partner but the country must have a functioning government to address long overdue EU reforms, including a dire economic situation.
BiH parliamentarians asked for continuous support of the EU institutions. The Chairman of the European Parliament (EP) Delegation for Southeast Europe Eduard Kukan assured them that they will get it. “Brussels will not leave you, we, the EU will find the best way to help BiH properly. We can advise, help, but you must move the country forward,” Kukan said.
Bosnia and Herzegovina can expect a committed and reliable partner in the EU, but BiH politicians must immediately undertake the reforms necessary to get the country back on its road to Europe. “We want BiH in the EU and from where I stand I can clearly see your flag and the name of your country at the table here in Brussels but the chair is empty. You need to do what is necessary to fill the chair and we will spare no effort to assist you,” EP Vice President, in charge of national Parliaments, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez said.
Members of the European Parliament believe that progress will depend on the ability of all BiH politicians to show leadership and willingness to compromise. BiH politicians agree that the future of their country is in the EU and that living standards of citizens they serve need to improve. “You will progress if there is a strong will for cooperation,” MEP Michael Gahler told BiH parliamentarians.
Parliament for Europe is an EUSR initiative that brings BiH parliamentarians together with their counterparts from EU member states to discuss EU integration issues.