09 July 2019 - Minister of Culture of Montenegro Aleksandar Bogdanović participates in the Global Conference for Media Freedom: London 2019, organised by the governments of the United Kingdom and Canada.
The conference was attended by representatives of 120 governments, while Minister Bogdanović delivered address during the first day of the panel discussion entitled "Media Freedom in the Western Balkans and a New Approach to Work".
In his address, Minister Bogdanović emphasised that Montenegro is continually committed to strengthening the freedom of the media and expression, which, as he pointed out, is a fundamental human right and the foundation of a democratic society, on whose values Montenegro sees its European future, as stated in the announcement by the Ministry of Culture of Montenegro.
Precisely at the proposal of the European Commission, Montenegro was the first country in the region where, with the support of experts from the European Union and the Council of Europe, the project "Reinforcing Judicial Expertise on Freedom of Expression and the Media in South-East Europe" was conducted. According to the information adopted by the Government of Montenegro on this occasion, the level of fulfillment of the recommendations of the subject analysis is at an extremely high level, and its main guidelines are the development of media policy that promotes and reinforces freedom of expression as a key goal.
Furthermore, he said that thanks to the complete decriminalization of defamation and insult, Montenegro achieved the standards of media freedom, which ranks it among the rare countries in the region and beyond that took this step, which best speaks about activities to improve the overall environment of media freedom.
Since the opening of negotiations with the European Union, the Government of Montenegro bought on the non-discriminatory basis debts of commercial broadcasters in the amount of EUR seven million – which is another example of supporting the development and protection of media pluralism. By creating the necessary conditions for media freedom and the sustainability of self-regulation, the Government of Montenegro provided at the same time a three-year transparent and independent financing model for self-regulatory bodies, which will be recognised by the new legal solutions as compulsory support for internal and external self-regulatory bodies.
Minister Bogdanović also stressed that Montenegro remains fully committed to the regular updating of the Council of Europe's Platform for the Protection of Journalism and the Safety of Journalists.
On the margins of the conference, Minister Bogdanović met with OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Désir, with whom he exchanged information on the dynamics and current activities regarding the media reform in Montenegro.
On the first day of the conference, Minister Bogdanovic met with Head of the Western Balkans Department at the UK's Foreign Office Andrew Page.
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