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Promotion of the regional study: Economic and European Perspectives of Western Balkan Countries - February, 2013

Promotion of the regional study: Economic and European Perspectives of Western Balkan Countries; Slavica Penev


Regional Network of Parliamentary Committees for Economy and Finance of the Western Balkan countries, was established at the Regional Parliamentary Conference in Belgrade (March 2009) with the aim of advancing the cooperation among the parliaments from this region.

The Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) recognized the need for the continuation of the cooperation among the Western Balkan parliaments through their Network of Parliamentary Committees for Finance and Economy. To support this regional cooperation, WFD initiated the drafting of a three-year regional programme aimed at Strengthening parliaments’ role in promoting competitiveness and economic growth in Western Balkan countries.

In addition to strengthening regional cooperation, the programme aims to strengthen the role of parliaments and governments in improving the competitiveness and economic growth of countries in the Western Balkans. This is at the top of the agenda for members of parliament, government ministers and officials, and policy-makers in the region. This study is an in-depth research on the state of economic and regulatory reforms, and role of the parliaments in this process. A road-map has been also developed and agreed by the stakeholders in the six participating countries outlining the country and regional goals to be achieved by 2015.

The programme also aims to emphasize the importance of close and continuous cooperation between parliaments, governments and economists from the scientific community from the region. Such cooperation could provide an innovative approach to strengthening the capacities of the parliaments of the region.

The aim of this is to:

  • Present the findings of the publication, which gives an overview of the economic situation in the countries of the region and their progress towards the EU
  • Discuss the future steps of the project, with the aim to share best practices from the countries of the region, and to eliminate their weaknesses identified in the book
  • Inform all the interested shareholders about the regional network and its activities, with the aim to expand the network, including the government representatives and researchers from the region