Conclusions from the 4th Annual Working Meeting of the Ministers of Agriculture from South-Eastern Europe (SEE), 23–24 November, 2010, Zagreb, Republic of Croatia

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Ministers for agriculture, their deputies and chiefs of cabinets from 11 countries from the region of South Eastern Europe participated at the 4th Annual Ministers’ meeting held on November 23rd in Zagreb, Croatia.

The aim of the gathering, held under the auspices of the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture and the Regional Rural Development Standing Working Group in SEE – SWG RRD, was to discuss and agree on the next steps for strengthening of the regional cooperation in the field of Agriculture and Rural Development.

In the direct aftermath of the established Annual Ministerial Meetings of the Ministers of Agriculture, as well as Agricultural Policy Forums of the South Eastern Europe Countries, the Ministers had an open discussion about the interests of the countries in the SEE region in order to identify common and to reconcile differing interests and views. The concrete conclusions are related to the following topics:

  • Reforms of the agricultural and rural development policy of the SEE Countries and its achievements in accordance with the EU CAP

Western Balkan countries are ready to implement the legal and institutional reforms leading towards EU integration; The cooperation between he countries from the region and with the EU institutions responsible for the agricultural and rural development sector should continue and must be further improved through joint efforts; Potential candidates and candidate countries from the Region have to be more involved in the processes of creation of the reforms of the new CAP (2013-2020) as well as in the discussions and alteration of the IPARD criteria formulated according to the characteristics and structures of the agriculture and rural areas in the Western Balkan Countries…

  • Regional Cooperation in the framework of the SWG

The support towards SWG RRD is confirmed and brother authorisation is given to the SWG bodies to make the necessary statutory adjustments and expand the cooperation in other sectors under the responsibility of the Ministries of Agriculture, e.g. food safety, phyto-sanitary, plant protection, water, forestry etc.

Among other conclusions, the participants at the Ministers’ meeting urged the European Commission to accelerate the discussions with SWG in indentifying common topics of interest and to start with preparation for further implementation of regional programs relevant for rural areas in SEE by providing access to funds and enable the SWG, to coordinate those regional programmes…

  • Regional Trade

Being aware of the existing problems in implementation of the provisions of the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA), particularly in the agriculture and food sector additional discussions and agreements among the signatories are recommended in order to overcome the differences and limitations in the administrative procedures and further liberalize the trade with agriculture and food products…

  • Donor Community

Deep appreciation to all Governments, organizations and partners which are supporting the regional cooperation in SEE countries in the agriculture and rural development and support the operations and activities of the SWG is expressed. At the same time, a call to the European Commission, international donor community and relevant governmental organizations is addressed in order to activate their potential and launch their intensive efforts in assisting the institutions from the South Eastern European countries responsible for agriculture and rural development in managing the challenges of the EU integration process…

The official Conclusions of the 4th Annual Working Meeting of the Ministers of Agriculture from South-Eastern Europe (SEE) download here

You can download Programme here and Presentations here

Conclusions from the 4th Annual Working Meeting of the Ministers of Agriculture from South-Eastern Europe (SEE), 23–24 November, 2010, Zagreb, Republic of Croatia(Gallery)