The Politeia session on the 13th of May held by prof. Gordana Đurović (Faculty of Economics, University of Podgorica, Montenegro) had an interesting title “It takes two to Tango: The Western Balkans European perspectives".
Professor Đurović emphasized that the idiom “It takes two to tango” was not accidentally used in this context, it should suggest that joint and mutual efforts of our societies and the European Union are needed in order to "play this tango".
She underlined that we should pay attention to the context in our region and pointed out the problem of the rule of law and economic convergence as the most important points, especially explaining the issue of the new methodology in the EU accession negotiations and the consequences of the great health crisis in the form of COVID pandemic.
The EU is a community based on values, an economic community, a community of different ethnic groups and cultures, a community that has its own priorities, problems and challenges. It is all the European Union. From the beginning, the EU core values have been peace, stability, economic prosperity and democratic development. The European Union has achieved a deeper level of integration, expanding common European policies. As a region surrounded by the EU, the Western Balkans have a clear European perspective.
However, the biggest problems in the region remain the rule of law and the competitiveness of local economies. The rule of law is at the heart of the EU enlargement process and that is why our societies need judicial reform. Prof. Đurović highlighted that it is necessary to fight organized crime and corruption.
Finally, the professor Đurović emphasized that we also face the problem of democratic institutions, which are an important criterion for European integration. Civil sector, as well as young people, can help citizens become more involved in the political process. Fundamental rights, religious freedoms, gender equality - these are all challenges that need to be overcome in order to join the EU.
This activity is organized in the framework of the project "Regional Youth Compact for Europe" supported financially by the European Union with co-financing from the Balkan Trust for Democracy.