01 June 2019 - President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović received the President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach, who is visiting Montenegro on the occasion of the 17th Games of Small States of Europe.
President Đukanović thanked Thomas Bach for the support that the International Olympic Committee provided for the organization of the Games of Small States of Europe and his contribution and the presence at the closing ceremony of this event. He emphasized that the organization of this sport event is an opportunity for Montenegro to be further affirmed, bearing in mind that we reestablished our independence 13 years ago, even though we have nurtured our statehood for almost a millennium.
The president assessed that sport is the best opportunity to bring the quality of a country and its people to the international community and its partners much faster than any other field.
He informed the interlocutor that Montenegro, after the restoration of independence, became a member of NATO and that it had made the most progress in the negotiations with the EU. In all this, he emphasized, it is a special honor for us to see that, immediately after the restoration of independence, Montenegro became a part of the family of the International Olympic Committee.
"In all our aspirations, for economic progress, strengthening the quality of life of citizens, building infrastructure and integration processes, we did not forget the need for constant investment in sports," said the President of Montenegro.
In this context, he pointed out the Strategy for the Development of Montenegro's Sports, which contains clear goals and guidelines for further improvement, as well as the fact that we are ahead of investments in sports infrastructure, given the number of inhabitants and athletes.
The President of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, thanked the President for his reception, as well as the long-standing contribution to the development of sport in Montenegro. He emphasized that he always enjoys special satisfaction when the state leads the leader, who has affinities towards sports, which is a symbol of commitment to discipline and self-sacrifice. He also praised the achievements Montenegro achieved in fulfilling its foreign policy priorities and especially highlighted sports results as the most representative affirmation of our country in the world.
He pointed to the quality organization of the Olympic Games of the Small States of Europe, which has proven that Montenegro is capable of handling the organization of the largest and most demanding international competitions. He praised the quality coordination and proactive action of the Montenegrin Olympic Committee and the Ministry of Sports.
On this occasion, the President of the International Olympic Committee gave special recognition to President Đukanović, on the occasion of the 125th anniversary of the founding of the International Olympic Committee, which is given to the heads of state who have made an outstanding contribution to the development of sports.
The meeting was also attended by the President of the Montenegrin Olympic Committee, Dusko Simonovic, and Minister of Sports Nikola Janovic.