June 23, 2020 - On the occasion of the European Commission's decision to approve the opening of the last negotiating chapter with Montenegro, Prime Minister Dusko Markovic said that today is an excellent day for Montenegro, confirming it is close to EU membership.
"We are very pleased to receive the news that the European Commission's competent body has given the green light to open the last chapter 8 - Competition in negotiations with the European Union. We expect that this will be formally confirmed tomorrow. It is a great day for Montenegro, which will become the first candidate country to open all negotiating chapters. We have confirmed what has been heard from every relevant address for years – that Montenegro is the most promising and country closest to EU membership. This is therefore proof of our consistent commitment to successfully fulfilling the obligations stemming from the European agenda. It is also another confirmation of our leadership position in the enlargement process. It is also gives great recognition to the Government and all our institutions for their hard work on the adoption and application of European standards and harmonization with European regulations. At the same time, it is a response to all those who tried to question the democratic and reform capacities of Montenegro," said the Prime Minister.
PM Marković recalled that our country has come a long and challenging way since the beginning of negotiations- from the fact that a new approach focused on progress in Chapters 23 and 24 was applied to us for the first time, to particular challenges brought by the process of internal consolidation in the EU.
"Today's consent gives us confirmation that all our efforts and patience have borne fruit, and that the result is valued even when it is still pending. After the recent non-paper on the rule of law, noting Montenegro's progress in key areas, the support of member states to open the last chapter showed their commitment to the European perspective of the region, which was the focus of the last EU-Western Balkans Summit," said the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister Duško Marković said that they were especially pleased that the green light was given during Croatia's presidency of the EU Council, which is the result of selfless efforts by neighboring Croatia to place the enlargement policy high on the Union's agenda.
"By accepting the new negotiation methodology, Montenegro has shown readiness to dynamize the process further since the focus will be on the technical and the political aspects of enlargement. The opening of Chapter 8 marks the end of the first phase of the EU integration process. It gives us the wind in our sails to approach the fulfillment of obligations in the next, most demanding stage of closing the chapters with new enthusiasm. We used the time we had to achieve internal readiness for the temporary closure of one set of sections in the coming period, on which we will actively work with Germany, which will assume the presidency," concluded Prime Minister Duško Marković.
Source: Government of Montenegro