Speaker of Parliament Tsveta Karayancheva and President of the Parliament of Montenegro Ivan Brajović have discussed the EU prospect for Montenegro and possibilities for deepening and strengthening parliamentary dialogue. A delegation, led by the President of the Montenegrin Parliament, is on a two-day official visit to Bulgaria.
The EU integration of the Western Balkan states is a priority for Bulgaria, which will take over the presidency of the Council of the European Union at the beginning of 2018, emphasised Tsveta Karayancheva. She said that the Bulgarian presidency was already referred to as Balkan presidency and added that this issue would be also among the priorities of the next member states to preside over the Council.
The Speaker of Parliament congratulated her Montenegrin colleague for opening another two negotiation chapters for EU membership and said that during the presidency Bulgaria would work on the opening of the remaining three chapters.
President of the Parliament of Montenegro Ivan Brajović thanked for the consistent and firm support which Bulgaria and its Parliament were giving for the Euro-Atlantic integration of his country. We are happy that the organisation we would like to join will be presided by our friends, he said and added that the countries from the region had great expectations from the forthcoming Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU.
It is important that the EU prospect for the Western Balkan states is open and visible, taking into account the individual progress of each country, emphasised Ivan Brajović. In Montenegro we are aware of the need to prove every day that we deserve to be a member of the EU, he added.
Bulgaria firmly supports the individual progress of each Western Balkan state in the EU integration process, said Tsveta Karayancheva. She emphasised that it was important for Bulgaria to develop parliamentary cooperation bilaterally and on the level of different organisations. We count of Montenegro’s support for the candidacy of Sofia to host the Permanent Secretariat of the Parliamentary Assembly of the South-Eastern Europe Cooperation Process, said the Speaker of Parliament.
The topics discussed at the meeting between the presidents of the legislative institutions of Bulgaria and Montenegro included the development of bilateral relations, and strengthening of trade exchange and tourism.
I am pleased and honoured to be the first President of the Parliament of Montenegro who is officially visiting Bulgaria since our country declared independence, wrote Ivan Brajović in the Book of Honour of the National Assembly. I am confident that this visit is a confirmation of the preparedness of the two countries to deepen parliamentary cooperation and develop bilateral relations in all areas, he added.
Speaker of Parliament Tsveta Karayancheva met her Montenegrin colleague at the official entrance of the National Assembly. After the meeting they made a joint media statement.
Later they laid flowers at the monument of the Unknown Soldier.
The programme of the delegation includes meetings with Deputy Prime Minister for the judicial reform and Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva and Minister for the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU in 2018 Lilyana Pavlova.
MPs from the Committee on European Affairs and Oversight of the EU funds and the Bulgaria-Montenegro Friendship Group will meet the foreign guests on 15 December 2017 at 10:45 in the parliamentary Hall Zapad. President of the Parliament of Montenegro Ivan Brajović will later talk to President of the Republic of Bulgaria Rumen Radev.
During the visit the Montenegrin delegation will also see St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the city of Plovdiv.