The fourteenth meeting of the Accession Conference with Montenegro at Ministerial level was held today in Brussels.
This is the second Intergovernmental Conference since the Council approved the revised enlargement methodology, which allowed for an interesting political exchange as well as steer on reforms.
The European Union delegation was led by Gašper Dovžan, State Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on behalf of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The Montenegrin delegation was led by Jakov Milatović, Minister of Economic Development of Montenegro.
We welcome the progress made by Montenegro. We underlined in our discussion that progress in the negotiations will depend on the advancement of Montenegro in its preparations for accession, especially in relation to the Rule of Law interim benchmarks.
Gašper Dovžan, State Secretary at the Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The revised enlargement methodology aims to reinvigorate the accession process. It includes: a stronger focus on fundamental reforms; a stronger political steer; increased dynamism; and a more predictable process, based on objective criteria and rigorous positive and negative conditionality.
Providing the accession process with a stronger political steer from the Intergovernmental Conferences is one of the key elements of the revised enlargement methodology. The meeting therefore served to strengthen the dialogue between the Member States and Montenegro, with a focus on key reforms needed to allow for further progress in the accession process.
The EU welcomed Montenegro’s efforts in this regard and its ambition to meet the rule of law interim benchmarks, and noted that the advancement of the negotiations will continue to be guided by Montenegro’s progress in preparing for accession, as established in the Negotiation Framework.