Podgorica, 3 July 2018 – The Bulgarian Ambassador to Montenegro, Mladen Chervenyakov presented the results of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

According to the ambassador, Bulgaria’s Presidency of the EU Council was a great challenge and responsibility, but it proved that one medium-to-small country by European standards can manage it.

“We are pleased with our presidency, it was a great success and we proved that we are able to organise such an important event,” said Chervenyakov.

Chervenyakov explained that the priority during the presidency was the European perspective and connection of the Western Balkan countries. Chervenyakov said that the declaration on the European perspective of the countries of this region adopted in May in Sofia is very significant, because the EU had not produced any such document during the previous 15 years.

“The priority is for the Western Balkans to be a stable, prosperous and developed zone,” said Chervenyakov.

Montenegro could even join the European Union before 2025, assessed the Bulgarian ambassador to Montenegro, saying that, as the leader in the integration process, Montenegro must show even greater progress in the rule of law and freedom of the media.

During its presidency Bulgaria emphasised the importance of connection between road, rail and air traffic in the countries of the Western Balkans, as well as the importance of resolving the problem of youth unemployment.

One of the key topics during the Bulgarian Presidency was the issue of security and stability in the region.

“Much has been done to address the problem of refugees, as well as in the fight against terrorism,” said Chervenyakov.

Chervenyakov said that Albania and FYR Macedonia could start accession negotiations in June next year, and that during its presidency Bulgaria had negotiated with Denmark, France and the Netherlands, which were against this.

“Albania and FYR Macedonia could have started accession negotiations earlier, but this was ultimately not possible due to some countries being against it,” said Chervenyakov.

He said that he expects that Austria will continue this policy during its presidency and that the European perspective of the Western Balkans will be crucial during the Austrian Presidency.