RCC hosts 4th Donor Coordination Meeting for the Western Balkans

13 March 2018

RCC hosts 4th Donor Coordination Meeting for the Western Balkans, on 13 March 2018, in Brussels, Belgium. (Photo: RCC/Jerome Hubert)

RCC hosts 4th Donor Coordination Meeting for the Western Balkans, on 13 March 2018, in Brussels, Belgium. (Photo: RCC/Jerome Hubert)

Synergy in donor coordination process for implementation of SEE 2020 Strategy and Regional Economic Area in the WB region

Brussels – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is hosting the 4th Annual Meeting of Donor Coordination for the Western Balkans, in Brussels today. 
While opening the meeting the RCC’s Secretary General Goran Svilanovic stressed that this, fourth donors’ gathering, aims at raising the donors coordination in the region to a higher level of communication. 
“The Western Balkans’ economies are fully committed to implementation of the SEE 2020 Strategy and the complementary MAP REA, involving substantial reforms, adjustments and harmonisation. The required funding has to follow these footsteps. Therefore, this meeting provides an excellent opportunity for the beneficiaries and donors to exchange information on the actual needs, gaps and opportunities, leading to successful completion of the undertaken tasks. Equally important, this is an opportunity for donors to synergise and coordinate their efforts. Good starting point to that end is the RCC-coordinated need assessment for MAP REA implementation in the region in the areas of investment, mobility and digital integration.”   
Colin Wolfe, Head of Unit for Western Balkans Regional Cooperation and Programmes at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations underlined that working together through regional cooperation, led by RCC is very important in achieving the desired goals. 
“The momentum created for the Western Balkans by the latest European Union’s (EU) Strategy on enlargement perspective of the Western Balkans should be used. The region has to show that it can work together and make significant results. The EU will provide its support in the process”, said Wolfe adding that donors gathered at this meeting will also be able to assess opportunities to join. 
In the continuation of the meeting the participants will be elaborately informed on the needs and gaps in policy design and reforms, technical assistance, capacity building and investment needs related to the MAP REA implementation in each economy, and additionally at regional level. The meeting attempts to ensure the alignment of any future donor financial support with the SEE2020 and MAP REA objectives, matching the available funding with adequate opportunities, avoiding duplication, and ensuring timely planning and complementing financing from national levels. Also, the discussion will point out to the areas in which technical assistance is much needed, both at national and regional levels.
The Donor Coordination meeting is being held a day after endorsement of the SEE 2020  Programming Document for period 2018-2020, which clearly identifies the main priorities and a target-oriented work plan for the given period. 
The meeting is bringing together regional stakeholders/beneficiaries involved in the implementation of SEE 2020 Strategy and Multi-annual Action Plan for Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) in Western Balkans’ Six economies, major donor organisations, bilateral donors, other International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and organisations, regional initiatives, and implementing agencies to learn about and discuss funding opportunities.
The objective of the Annual Meeting on Donor Coordination in the Western Balkans is to map and coordinate donor activities in the Western Balkans so as to help achieve a better alignment of regional governments’ development priorities and donors’ sectoral interventions.

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