News Archive

20 June 2024 | News

RCC’s EU-funded WBYL launched Youth Policy Lab on Green Agenda

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Western Balkans Youth Lab (WBYL) launched Youth Policy Lab on Green Agenda. Upon the successful first two Youth Policy Labs on Youth Unemployment and Mental Health, Green Agenda is chosen to be a priority topic young people of the Western Balkans want to create policies for which are to bring change.


14 June 2024 | News

Youth Sports Games won Champion of Regional Cooperation Dr Busek Award

Skopje – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of Austria presented the Youth Sports Games as the winner of the Champion of Regional Cooperation Dr Erhard Busek Award at the reception following the RCC Annual Meeting, on 12 June 2024 in Skopje.


13 June 2024 | News

SEECP participants praise RCC and appoint new RCC SG for 2025-2027

Skopje – The leaders of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) praised the work of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and commended the dedication and commitment of its Secretary General Majlinda Bregu over her tenure. Participants highlighted RCC’s role in the achievements of the Common Regional Market as a stepping stone towards the EU Single Market, and acknowledged ...


12 June 2024 | News

Our mission for past 6 years: not only adapt to change, but lead it

Skopje – The participants of the 16th Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), held in Skopje today, endorsed the RCC Annual Report 2023-2024. The meeting, co-chaired by the RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu and Bujar Osmani, Minister of Foreign Affairs of North Macedonia, on behalf of the Chair of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP), discussed developments ...


30 May 2024 | News

Bregu and Mogherini sign MoU between RCC and College of Europe

Tirana – Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), and Federica Mogherini, College of Europe Rector, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on developing and further strengthening the cooperation between the two institutions, in Tirana today.


24 May 2024 | News

Bregu: European Union will be stronger with Western Balkans firmly in its fold

Ljubljana - The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Majlinda Bregu opened the Civil Society High Level Conference, dubbed Continuing the success story of EU enlargement – Bringing benefits to the Western Balkans in advance of accession, together with Tanja Fajon, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Slovenia, Oliver Röpke, ...


21 May 2024 | News

RCC’s trademark regional digital competition Balkathon 5.0 is on!

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching its trademark online regional competition for the best digital ideas and solutions from the Western Balkans - Balkathon 5.0. Applications are open until 5 July 2024. 


17 May 2024 | News

‘Learning by doing’ name of the game for entering EU Single Market

Tirana - The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Majlinda Bregu spoke at the Belgrade Security Conference (BSC) Leaders Meetings Discussion, held in Tirana today. 


16 May 2024 | News

One region, common vision

Kotor – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Majlinda Bregu took part at the Western Balkans Leaders’ Summit, dubbed One region, common vision, focusing on bringing the region closer to the EU through the EU Growth Plan and the Common Regional Market (CRM) Action Plan, held in Kotor today. 


09 May 2024 | News

Statement by the RCC Secretary General on the occasion of Europe Day

Sarajevo – Statement by the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council Majlinda Bregu on the occasion of the Europe Day:


30 April 2024 | News

RCC Secretary General on the Occasion of Labour Day

Sarajevo – May 1st brings workers around the Western Balkans and the world a well-deserved break from work, but also reminds us of ongoing battles for improved working conditions, brain drain, long-term unemployment and undeclared work. 


26 April 2024 | News

Bregu: No Green Transition of the Western Balkans Without Substantial Support

Vienna – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, outlined the role of the RCC and the situation in our region regarding the green transition and energy sustainability, at the TRATOLOW Ministerial Western Balkans and Türkiye Conference held in Vienna today.


02 April 2024 | News

2023 nominations open!

Sarajevo/Vienna – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria (BMEIA) have the pleasure to invite you to nominate an organisation or an individual from South East Europe for the 2023 Champion of Regional Cooperation Dr Erhard Busek Award.


27 March 2024 | News

Common Regional Market region's vehicle to EU Single Market

Skopje – Ministers of European Affairs of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) expressed their commitment to the continuation of efforts in two important strategic agendas in our region: the Common Regional Market (CRM) for the Western Balkans aligned with the New Growth Plan for the region, and the South East Europe (SEE) 2030 Strategy, at their meeting held in Skopje ...


18 March 2024 | News

RCC to provide one scholarship for College of Europe Tirana as of 2024

Sarajevo – The participants of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board approved the Report of the RCC Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, on the activities of the organisation in the period November 2023 – February 2024, and commended the work of RCC, confirming their full approval of the forthcoming phase's planned activities, at the 51st Board meeting, held online today. ...


12 March 2024 | News

RCC announces Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year for 2023

Sarajevo - Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year for 2023 are: Rigerta Loku - Green Woman Entrepreneur; Ilda Humić - Social Star Woman Entrepreneur; Hana Qerimi - Young Woman Entrepreneur; Nikolina Kovačević - Tourism Woman Entrepreneur; Irena Chaushevska Danilovska - ICT Woman Entrepreneur; and Marija Ivanković Jurišić - Artistic Woman Entrepreneur; as announced at ...


12 March 2024 | News

Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year to be announced tonight

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the 2023 Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year at a ceremony to take place this evening in Sarajevo.


08 March 2024 | News

Women’s economic empowerment is not a luxury

“The most dangerous phrase in the language is “We’ve always done it this way”. It’s 8 March today, and the buzzword you are getting from all around is “Women’s day”. So, the note of ours on this day is on women. Women continue to face disadvantage and discrimination in all areas of economic life. Mothers around the Western Balkans are particularly ...


29 February 2024 | News

Bregu: The time is ticking on defining the future of our region

Tirana - In a Joint Statement issued at the Growth and Convergence for the Western Balkans Six Conference held in Tirana today the Leaders of the Western Balkans Six (WB6) commended the work of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), underscored the region's commitment to integration and emphasized enhanced cooperation with the EU.


08 February 2024 | News

Bregu: Circular economy can create jobs and unlock economic opportunities

The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) launched the Western Balkans Green and Circular Economy Stakeholders Platform, consisting of government, business, donor, and CSO representatives, at a high-level meeting taking place in Pristina today. 


01 February 2024 | News

RCC: Nominations for Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2023 are open

Sarajevo – For the third year in a row, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is pleased to announce that the nominations for the Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2023 have officially begun. 


22 January 2024 | News

New Phase of the Common Regional Market to Be Ready for Leaders' Endorsement at the Next Berlin Process Summit

Skopje - The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, took part in the Western Balkans Meets EU, a WB leaders' meeting in Skopje today. The meeting dedicated to the Growth Plan for the Western Balkans has been hosted by the Prime Minister of North Macedonia, Dimitar Kovachevski. 


15 December 2023 | News

The Second EU-Western Balkan Youth Forum, hosted by the RCC, ends in Novi Sad

The second edition of the EU Balkan Youth Forum (EUBYF), organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in cooperation and with funding of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, as well as RCC’s EU-funded WB Youth Lab project (WBYL), ended in Novi Sad today. The Forum gathered more than 30 young people from Western Balkans (WB) and European Union ...


13 December 2023 | News

Bregu: Fully functional Common Regional Market can be our vessel to the EU Single Market

Brussels - The European Union (EU) and Western Balkan (WB) leaders reiterated the shared commitment to step up the efforts to enhance integration of the Western Balkans with the EU single market, with the WB Common Regional Market (CRM) serving as a stepping stone for region’s EU integration, at the EU-WB Summit hosted by the EU Council in Brussels today. 


12 December 2023 | News

RCC Reveals Winners of the 2023 Regional Butterfly Innovation Award

Sofia – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) revealed the winners of the 2023 Regional Butterfly Innovation Award, at a ceremony RCC organized with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria, held in Sofia today. “Congratulations - we hope the Butterfly Innovation Award supports you in navigating challenging markets. Several of last year’s awardees have enhanced their ...


11 December 2023 | News

European Union-Western Balkans Cooperation in Focus This Week

RCC to present winners of the Regional Butterfly Innovation Award 2023 in Sofia  The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the winners of the second edition of Regional Butterfly Innovation Award at a ceremony co-organised with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria, on 12 December 2023 in Sofia. The Awards will be presented by the RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu ...


24 November 2023 | News

Bregu: Can you put a price tag on people leaving the region? In a way, yes, you can

Western Balkans is ranked among some of the economies most affected by brain drain, with expectations to lose around one million young people in the coming decade. People leaving the region does not only pose a risk to workforce availability but also threatens additional pressure to health care and pension systems in the region as well. If these projections are to come true, the Western Balkans ...


23 November 2023 | News

RCC Secretary General promotes regional cooperation at the Elcano Royal Institute in Madrid

Madrid – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, took part at the event dedicated to the discussion on the Western Balkans accession to the European Union and the role of regional cooperation and RCC, organised within the Spanish Presidency of Council of the European Union by the Elcano Royal Institute in Madrid today. 


21 November 2023 | News

RCC Secretary General meets Moldovan Deputy Prime Minister in Chisinau

The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General Majlinda Bregu was in a visit to Moldova today where she met with the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration, Nicu Popescu, to discuss the EU integration of the region and Moldova’s role in the South East Europe Cooperation Process (SEECP) and the RCC. 


14 November 2023 | News

Bregu: Brain Drain is Becoming not just Human Capital but Security Issue Too

Rome - "Migration is becoming one of the biggest problems of today, because countries are emptying. Not just those that result in the inflow of migrants to our region, but also because of the emigration from our region further to the west. Hence, the term of security challenges is dramatically changing. Security challenge is not just conflict resolution or prevention but it is also climate ...


08 November 2023 | News

RCC Board praises the work of the organisation and its Secretary General

Sarajevo – Opening the 50th meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board in Sarajevo today, the RCC Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, shared positive outcomes and feedback to the start of implementation of EU-WB Roaming Reductions and the results of continuing regional cooperation presented in the last couple of weeks at the Berlin Process Summit and other meetings.


23 October 2023 | News

Bregu: It is precisely in our diversity that the true potential for cooperation lies

Bruges - “The Western Balkans is like a canvas, painted with all hues of history and diversity, a tapestry of languages, cultures, and painful conflict. Yet it is precisely in this diversity that the true potential for cooperation lies. But, Western Balkans is Europe. Since the EU enlargement process is taking decades, regional cooperation is establishing a norm, not a normative, but ...


19 October 2023 | News

Imagine. Innovate. Create: RCC opens applications for Butterfly Innovation Award 2023

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is inviting creative minds to apply for the 2nd round of Regional Butterfly Innovation Award for innovative, scalable, and market-based solutions from the Western Balkans. The Butterfly Innovation Award fund is set at 30,000 EUR, where the best solution in each of the 6 categories will get the prize of 5,000 EUR.


16 October 2023 | News

Bregu: Another agreement prepared by the RCC signed today in Tirana

Tirana – The Heads of Governments of the Western Balkans Six signed one more agreement under the Common Regional Market (CRM) Action Plan’s mobility agenda, a process facilitated by the RCC - on the recognition of professional qualifications of nurses, veterinary surgeons, pharmacists, and midwives – at the Berlin Process Summit held in Tirana today.


13 October 2023 | News

Bregu: Role of Parliaments in the Berlin Process is to transform the pledges to reality

Tirana - "The ultimate legal responsibility in the ratification process of most of regional agreements and commitments lies with the parliaments. This once again makes evident the need for stronger engagement of Parliaments in this process, not only to formally add to its democratic legitimacy but to transform the pledges in reality through the ratification process of regional agreements ...


12 October 2023 | News

Bregu: Supporting cities in accelerating their transition to environmentally-friendly & digitally advanced urban environments is imperative

Tirana – The first Local Self-Governments Forum, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) together with the Municipality of Tirana and the Network of Association of Local Authorities of South East Europe (NALAS), opened in Tirana today. 


11 October 2023 | News

Tirana: RCC to host the first regional Local Self-Governments Forum

Tirana - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is inviting you to the first Local Self-Governments Forum on 12 October in the Pyramid of Tirana. The Forum: Unlocking the Future: Innovate, Eco-vate, Elevate - Western Balkans Unite for Smart Cities, is being organised by the RCC, together with the Municipality of Tirana and the Network of Associations of Local Authorities of South East Europe ...


06 October 2023 | News

Bregu: Making the enlargement credible both for the region and the EU lies ahead of us, with keys in our hands

Tirana – “A success story of EU-rules based regional cooperation and a symbolic entry ticket to EU single market saw the light of the day on 1 October – when the EU-Western Balkans roaming reductions came into effect. A demonstration of commitments made and pledges upkept. Against a very difficult backdrop in our region currently, this 1 October we managed all together, ...


04 October 2023 | News

Bregu: By working on digital transformation we are working on Europeanisation of our region

Sarajevo – The sixth Western Balkans Digital Summit (WBDS), hosted by Bosnia and Herzegovina and supported by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), opened this morning in Sarajevo. 


03 October 2023 | News

Bregu: Balkathon is a platform for development of young people's entrepreneurial skills and creating new jobs

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) presents winners of the fourth Western Balkans online competition for the best digital solutions, BALKATHON 4.0:


02 October 2023 | News

Who will win 2023 Balkathon? Follow us live tomorrow and find out

Sarajevo – The grand finale of the fourth Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s online competition for the best digital solutions in the Western Balkans, BALKATHON 4.0 is to take place tomorrow, Tuesday, 3 October 2023 starting at 10.00 hrs in Sarajevo. The event will be livestreamed at RCC’s YouTube channel.


02 October 2023 | News

Bregu: EU-Western Balkans roaming reductions in force as of today

TIRANA, October 2, 2023 — In a significant stride towards regional cooperation and affordable mobile communication, the EU-Western Balkans Roaming Declaration, signed at the EU-Western Balkans Summit in Tirana on December 6, 2022, has officially taken effect, marking 1 October 2023, as a date of change.


26 September 2023 | News

Bregu: A human-centric Europe, with Western Balkans firmly in its fold, is the best investment in peace and security for the entire continent

Tirana – “A human-centric Europe, that is adapted, reformed, rebooted and more - with Western Balkans firmly in its fold - is the best investment in peace and security for the entire continent! The Western Balkans has made significant progress in the last two decades, but we are not where we wanted and should be and unfortunately, friction amongst countries persists, and conflicts ...


21 September 2023 | News

Bregu: When global institutions and frameworks are stretched thin, regional bodies can step in to provide stability, continuity, and direction

New York - "The Western Balkans has made significant progress in the last two decades, but the Western Balkans is not where its inhabitants or outside peacemakers hoped we would be twenty-plus years after the guns went largely quiet. Unfortunately, friction amongst economies persists, and conflicts can hinder investments and economic growth in the region. Having in mind this and the ...


15 September 2023 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans faces security challenges daily

Tirana – “As a region where geopolitical and strategic interests compete, Western Balkans faces security challenges daily, and the aggression against Ukraine didn’t make it any easier on us. According to Western Balkan citizens, their perception of security has been strongly affected by crime in general - organised crime in particular, as well as drugs and human trafficking, ...


19 August 2023 | News

Anna Gyimesi gets Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film

Sarajevo - Anna Gyimesi from Hungary won Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film with a movie Falling, at the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival. This award, patroned by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), was presented at the SFF closing ceremony last night in Sarajevo. Brava Anna for this impressive achievement! This remarkable start to your career undoubtedly hints at a series of ...


25 July 2023 | News

Support for regional cooperation among Western Balkan business people has risen from 69% last year, to 74%

Sarajevo – Last week, the Regional Cooperation Council published the results of the annual Balkan Barometer 2023 Public Opinion Survey. To complete the picture of our region’s opinions about regional cooperation, EU integration, trust in the public institutions and media, their biggest concerns, employment, climate change, security, digital life, transport, rule of law, travel, ...


18 July 2023 | News

69% of Western Balkan citizens agree that what brings them together is more important than what separates them

Sarajevo - For the 9th time in a row, the Regional Cooperation Council is publishing the results of Balkan Barometer - the annual survey among six thousand people from the entire Western Balkans, giving an overview of their opinions on regional cooperation, EU integration, trust in the public institutions and media, their biggest concerns, employment, climate change, security, digital life, ...


13 July 2023 | News

RCC’s trademark digital competition - Balkathon 4.0 - is on! Apply Now!

Sarajevo – For the fourth year in a row, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching region’s trademark online competition for the best digital ideas and solutions from the Western Balkans - Balkathon 4.0. Applications are open until 13 September. 


12 July 2023 | News

RCC, EESC set to deepen civil society and youth engagement in region’s reform processes

Brussels – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, and the President of the European Economic and Social Committee, Oliver Röpke, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation between the two organisations, in Brussels today. The purpose of the MoU is to further and streamline cooperation in strengthening the inclusion of civil ...


08 July 2023 | News

Bregu: European leadership, power, and unity have never been more needed in the Western Balkans

"The language of power is the language of leadership. By necessity, and maybe not by choice, the EU is learning every day that speaking the language of power is power itself. European leadership, power, and unity have never been more important, more needed, and more obviously in the interests of EU Member States and other regions worldwide, including the Western Balkans," said Majlinda ...


05 July 2023 | News

Bregu: 49% of Western Balkan citizens are concerned the climate change is affecting their health

Budapest - "According to our recent Balkan Barometer, 49% of the citizens of the WB are concerned that climate change is affecting their health. Moreover, Pollution of Air (57%), Water (44%), and Soil (39%) are listed as the greatest environmental concerns in communities. All Western Balkan countries except Albania rely on coal as their main energy source. 67% of households still use ...


30 June 2023 | News

Bregu: Crucial step to reinforcing critical digital capacities in our region is phasing in EU policies and programmes

Brussels – “Today’s accession to the Digital Europe Programme for four economies from our region is a major development and crucial step to reinforce critical digital capacities in EU and WB. What once seemed almost utopic is now a reality since 2021 - with the regional roaming fees eliminated. We continue to keep our promises on the roaming agenda. During the first Regulatory ...


29 June 2023 | News

Bregu: Regional approach to cybersecurity, in line with EU standards, is a must

The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in cooperation with DG NEAR, organised a two-day high-level conference on cybersecurity in the Western Balkans, on 28-29 June 2023 in Brussels. 


27 June 2023 | News

Bregu: More cooperation crucial in addressing regional tensions

Podgorica – Heads of State and Government of South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) commended the work of Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and recognised its unique role and accomplishments in promoting cooperation, overall development of the region and advancing towards a common future in the European Union, acknowledging RCC’s significance as a focal point for streamlining ...


23 June 2023 | News

Kapetanovic: With already 334 victims of firearms in 2023 in our region, it is high time to reduce its supply, demand and misuse

Tirana – “The widespread proliferation and misuse of firearms poses a great threat to our societies. Only in the first quarter of 2023, 821 firearm incidents were reported in South East Europe, resulting in 334 victims. Our 2022 SecuriMeter survey indicates that 12% of Western Balkans citizens would consider owning a gun, which is twice as much compared to 2021. On the other hand, ...


21 June 2023 | News

Young People from the Region Present Their Own Visions and Plans on How to Improve Youth Mental Health

Belgrade – Thirty young people and policy makers from the entire Western Balkans presented the outcomes and recommendations that have emerged from their diligent efforts to address youth mental health in their economies at the Final Conference on Youth Mental Health, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s EU-funded Western Balkans Youth Lab Project (WBYL), in Belgrade ...


16 June 2023 | News

RCC wins annual Prespa Forum Dialogue 2023 award

Struga – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, took part at the annual Prespa Forum Dialogue (PFD) 2023, taking place 15-16 June 2023 in Struga, North Macedonia, where she received the PFD Award on behalf of RCC, spoke at the panel on regional cooperation, and held a series of bilateral meetings with EU and regional high officials.  ...


12 June 2023 | News

Bregu: Region’s special potential lies in the diversity of possible entrepreneurial engagement that has not been fully utilized just yet

Frankfurt – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General Majlinda Bregu was in Frankfurt, Germany, today, taking part at the Digisustain Conference at a panel dedicated to regional competencies and green investment opportunities in the Western Balkans. Digisustain gathers innovators, representatives of non-governmental sector, financial institutions and best-practice leaders ...


06 June 2023 | News

No Borders Orchestra is the Champion of Regional Cooperation for 2022

Sarajevo/Vienna – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria (BMEIA) have the pleasure to announce that the winner of the Champion of Regional Cooperation Dr Erhard Busek Award for 2022 is No Borders Orchestra (NBO).


05 June 2023 | News

Bregu: Our region deserves a re-energised enlargement process and membership advantages in advance of full accession

Budva – Ministers of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) commended the efforts of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in fostering regional cooperation and integration of the Western Balkan economies into the European Union (EU), focusing on the set of specific  achievements in the past twelve months:  RCC-coordinated EU-WB roaming ...


04 June 2023 | News

Bregu: This year marks one of the most impactful ones for the Western Balkans when it comes to regional cooperation

Budva - "This year marks one of the most impactful ones for the Western Balkans, marking the long-awaited turning point towards commitments taken by the economies of the region, through the Common Regional Market (CRM). With integrity, collegiality and competence - three words of tradition and challenge, we as RCC, together with our regional organisations and in close partnership with ...


29 May 2023 | News

Bregu: Half of all mental disorders begin before the age of 14. What is ‘an ounce of prevention’ when it comes to mental health, and do we take enough care of that?

Our region was recently shocked with an event that happened in Serbia when a young teenage boy killed ten people at school, including nine classmates. A horrible tragedy that rendered all of us silenced for days. In a matter of 24 hours after the school tragedy, another mass murdered happened in our region, when a young 21-year-old man killed 8 people. For all of us in this region those events ...


25 May 2023 | News

RCC Board approves organisation’s Annual Report 2022/23, and adopts Financial Report 2022

Sarajevo – The participants of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board approved the organisation’s Annual Report 2022/23 and adopted the Financial Report 2022 at their 49th meeting held in Sarajevo today. The Annual Report 2022/23 is expected to be endorsed at the RCC Annual Meeting and adopted at the SEECP Ministerial Meeting to take place on 4 and 5 June 2023, respectively, ...


04 May 2023 | News

Moderate progress of the Western Balkan economies regarding the European Pillar of Social Rights

(Sarajevo/Skopje) - The Employment and Social Affairs Platform 2 (ESAP 2) project of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) presented the 2022 edition of individual economy and regional overview reports on performance of the Western Balkan (WB) economies regarding the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR)  at the two-day hybrid event „Western Balkans 4 Decent working in living“, ...


04 May 2023 | News

European Union launches the third phase of its Roma Integration programme in partnership with the Council of Europe

The European Union is launching the third phase of the Roma Integration programme in partnership with the Council of Europe. It will contribute to the socio-economic integration of the Roma population in the Western Balkans and Türkiye. The programme will work with the governments in the region to increase their capacities to tackle challenges faced by Roma in the fields of housing, ...


29 April 2023 | News

BREGU: There is a price to pay for speaking the truth - how much are we willing to spend in “killing the fake news”?

Disinformation is false information deliberately and often covertly spread, such as through the planting of rumors, in order to influence public opinion or obscure the truth. Fake news spreads six times faster than true news. 


28 April 2023 | News

WBYL supported dialogue between Members of Parliament and civil society from Western Balkans in Brussels

From 25 to 27 April 2023, the Bridging the Gap initiative promoted dialogue between civil society and elected representatives from the region and from the European Union. The event was co-organized by the European Parliament's Mediation and Dialogue Support Unit and the European Commission's Directorate-General for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations together ...


20 April 2023 | News

RCC gathers key Western Balkan stakeholders for a workshop on media literacy and countering hybrid threats and disinformation

Helsinki - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in partnership with the European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats (Hybrid CoE) and with support from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, gathered 20 key Western Balkan stakeholders  - government, institutions, media, media regulatory authorities from the Western Balkans and civil society ...


18 April 2023 | News

Who is, in your opinion, Champion of Regional Cooperation in South East Europe? Nominate one by 17 May 2023!

Sarajevo/Vienna – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria (BMEIA) have the pleasure to invite you to nominate your favourite for the Champion of Regional Cooperation Dr Erhard Busek Award.


04 April 2023 | News

Bregu: Economic importance of tourism can make or break any region

Tirana – “Western Balkans pre-pandemic tourism showed positive trends. More than 12 million people visited the region, which brought a profit of 7.2 billion EUR. Tourism made 10.2% of the region’s GDP and accounted for more than 25% of exports. While one can go figure digging through reports, the core question for all of us is how to position Western Balkans at the world ...


03 April 2023 | News

Bregu: CRM will bring the Western Balkans closer to EU Single Market

RCC Secretary General spoke before Albanian Parliament of the RCC’s co-oganisation of the upcoming Berlin Process Summit in Tirana this fall    Tirana – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Majlinda Bregu spoke before the Albanian Parliament’s National Council of European Integration (NCEI) in Tirana today about co-organisation ...


30 March 2023 | News

Bregu: Region should remain steadfast on sustainable, green transition and decarbonisation path

“The Green Agenda for the Western Balkans is a dynamic and evolving initiative that, like a living organism, requires collective efforts of both the governmental and non-governmental sectors to nurture, grow and shape towards a sustainable plan for the future. In a developing region, such as ours, the concerns are related to daily life, and this makes it more difficult to think about ...


28 March 2023 | News

Bregu: Digitalisation momentum in Western Balkans calls for improvement e-service accessibility improvement and reduction of digital divide

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and European Investment Bank (EIB) gathered region’s ministers and other high ranking government officials, local and international experts in digital projects, key donors and financial institutions, as well as business representatives from the Western Balkans at the “Financing Digitalisation ...


27 March 2023 | News

RCC, EBRD, EIB organising Investing in Digitalisation in the Western Balkans Conference tomorrow in Sarajevo

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) Global are organising Investing in Digitalisation in the Western Balkans Conference, that is to take place on Tuesday, on 28 March 2023 in Sarajevo.


15 March 2023 | News

Bregu: Continued all-inclusive regional cooperation remains key in strengthening economic resilience of Western Balkans

Sarajevo – “External risks arising from the current geopolitical crisis and the rise in commodity prices reinforce the purpose of the Common Regional Market agenda. Continued all-inclusive regional cooperation remains the key towards strengthening economic resilience of the Western Balkans,” said Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, ...


10 March 2023 | News

UN Women and RCC join forces to advance women’s empowerment in the Western Balkans

UN Women Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia (ECA) and Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will join forces to advance the digital transformation in the Western Balkans to promote cooperation in the region, as well as advance women’s economic empowerment, and the green agenda.


09 March 2023 | News

RCC presents Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of 2022

Tirana - Dhurata Thanasi Daneri, Snjezana Köpruner, Elki Shehu, Mirjana Babic, Zagorka Blazevska, Marijana Gligoric are Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2022, as presented at a ceremony organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Tirana today. 


08 March 2023 | News

RCC to present Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2022

Sarajevo/Tirana – On the International Women’s Day, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2022, at a ceremony to be held on 9 March in Tirana. 


02 March 2023 | News

Bregu: Wellbeing, health and thriving population should be foundation of every growth policy

Copenhagen – “Economic growth cannot be the only and ultimate policy objective. Collective wellbeing, healthy and thriving population where no one is left behind should be the foundation of every growth policy. The ambitious post-pandemic recovery aspirations are crushed against the stark realities of our fellow citizens in South East Europe who struggle with galloping inflation ...


17 February 2023 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans is an important piece of the European security and stability puzzle

The annual 59th Munich Security Conference (MSC) started in Munich today gathering world leaders to discuss topics of global security, defence, technology, and sustainability while keeping the focus on the still ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. Alongside many world and European leaders, the MSC was attended by Olaf Scholz, German Chancellor, Emanuel Macron, French President, Volodymyr ...


07 February 2023 | News

United Group Joins the EU-WB Roaming Declaration

Brussels/Sarajevo - United Group, one of the largest telecommunications and media operators in the South East Europe including Nova, Total TV, Telemach, SBB and more regional telecommunication platforms, signed the European Union (EU)-Western Balkans (WB) Roaming Declaration at a meeting of telecommunications operators from EU and WB in Brussels today organised by the European Commission ...


03 February 2023 | News

RCC: Nominations for Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2022 open

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is happy to announce that the nomination process for the Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year 2022 has begun! The RCC launched this initiative last year in the framework of the Common Regional Market Action Plan 2021-2024 and the Women Economic Empowerment Agenda to recognise women who have started and developed their own ...


23 January 2023 | News

Bregu: Hundreds of stories of citizens being unable to meet relatives due to visas are soon to be in the past

Sarajevo – The long, cumbersome procedures and high visa refusal rate have significantly declined the number of Kosovan and Bosnian and Herzegovinian citizens visiting each other over the course of the last few years. 


18 January 2023 | News

Bregu: To have wider choices, earn more, and live better - Choose STEM Future

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching a campaign dubbed “Choose STEM future” to encourage young women and girls to pursue careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) by bringing forth inspiring role models of successful women in STEM profession from the Western Balkans (WB). This campaign was created as part of the regional Women ...


08 December 2022 | News

RCC hosts the Second Butterfly Innovation & Business Forum in Sarajevo

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in partnership with the EU4DigitalSME - Innovation and Digitalisation in SMEs in BiH project implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and Enterprise Europe Network (EEN), hosted the Second Butterfly Innovation & Business Forum on 6-7 December 2022 in Sarajevo. 


06 December 2022 | News

Reduction of data roaming prices between WB and EU to start as of 1 October 2023

At the EU-Western Balkans Summit held in Tirana today, the telecommunications operators from the European Union (EU) and the Western Balkans signed a Roaming Declaration enabling the reduction of the roaming charges between the EU and the Western Balkans as of 1 October 2023. 


22 November 2022 | News

RCC, WB6CIF gather European investors, present opportunities and advantages of doing business in the Western Balkans

Ljubljana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Western Balkans 6 Chamber Investment Forum (WBCIF) gathered European investors from Austria, Croatia, Italy and Slovenia, WB investment promotion agencies, ministries responsible for investment policy and promotion, regional organisations and international financial institutions to present opportunities and benefits of investing ...


18 November 2022 | News

Bregu: 82.9% of Western Balkan citizens agree that regional cooperation can help in improving economic resilience

Rome/Sarajevo – “The EU and the Western Balkans share many evolving, borderless security threats, from radicalisation, violent extremism, and return of Foreign Terrorist Fighters to irregular migration, organised crime, corruption, disinformation and cyber-attacks. Such joint priorities have been re-validated by the war in Ukraine by also making clear the important role of the Western ...


15 November 2022 | News

WB Youth Lab: Youth working on mental health policies to build the region as an environment of care

Pristina – “Deteriorating mental health among youth during pandemic led to multiplied negative effects in the long run, which was an alarm to act. We have made first steps towards bridging the gap between the mental health needs and the policy solutions. Cooperation, innovative approach, equality and participation on equal basis among youth and policy makers have brought excellent ...


09 November 2022 | News

RCC Board participants praise the organisation, congratulate its Secretary General on the excellent, for our region extremely important job done

Sarajevo – Opening the 47th meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board in Sarajevo today, the RCC Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, shared very positive outcomes of regional cooperation presented in the last couple of weeks during the Berlin Process Summit and related meetings. 


03 November 2022 | News

Bregu: It’s done - the three RCC-coordinated centrepiece mobility agreements finally see the light of day

Berlin – The Heads of Governments of the Western Balkans Six signed the three mobility agreements under the Common Regional Market (CRM) Action Plan’s mobility agendas - on Freedom of Movement with Identity Cards, on Recognition of Higher Education Qualifications, and on Recognition of Professional Qualifications for Doctors of Medicine, Dentists and Architects – at the ...


24 October 2022 | News

Bregu: Keeping the Green Agenda implementation torch lit is difficult, but there are no U-turns in a climate change-vulnerable region like ours

Berlin/Sarajevo – “Keeping the torch lit on the implementation of the Green Agenda for the Western Balkans that was developed in times of stability was a hellishly difficult task in these times of adversity. It is clearly overshadowed by the impact of the war and the pan-European energy price surge. There will be no quick fixes and silver bullets for this colossal challenge ahead ...


21 October 2022 | News

All-inclusive regional cooperation and Common Regional Market deliver results

Berlin/Sarajevo – The Western Balkans (WB) Foreign Ministers approved three regional agreements - on Freedom of Movement with Identity Cards, on Recognition of Higher Education Qualifications, and on Recognition of Professional Qualifications for Doctors of Medicine, Dentists and Architects – at the WB-EU ministerial meeting, organised within the Berlin Process by the German Government ...


21 October 2022 | News

RCC to ascertain the rationale behind defamation and insinuations against the organisation and its Secretary General

The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is well known for being a serious and responsible organisation therefore does not comment on either hearsay speculations or fabrications.


19 October 2022 | News

European Union and Western Balkans mobile operators to work together on steps, ought to start EU-WB roaming charges reduction soon

Sarajevo/Brussels – The European Union (EU) and the Western Balkans (WB) mobile operators met today to discuss the Roadmap on lowering the roaming charges between the EU and our region, at the meeting organised by the European Commission. Olivér Várhelyi, EU Neighborhood and Enlargement Commissioner, Thierry Breton, EU Internal Market Commissioner, and Majlinda Bregu, ...


24 September 2022 | News

RCC co-organises SEECP foreign ministers' meeting in New York

New York – "Entire South East Europe finds itself facing similar challenges and similar opportunities, from energy security to food crisis, and regional cooperation is the key for them in the period to follow," said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), at the meeting of the South East Europe Cooperation Process (SEECP) foreign ministers, ...


21 September 2022 | News

Bregu: Digitalisation necessitates an intergenerational approach

Pristina – “Today is a great day for Pristina.  It is the centre of gravity of one of the greatest Berlin Process initiatives – the Western Balkans Digital Summit. Pristina today bursts and radiates with the dynamism of so many start-ups, companies, experts and policy makers – all united in their drive to harness the potentials of digitisation for our region’s ...


06 September 2022 | News

Bregu: Balkathon is the image and positive narrative of our thriving region in this exceptionally uncertain outlook

Pristina - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) presents winners of the third Western Balkans online competition for the best digital solutions, BALKATHON 3.0:


04 September 2022 | News

Bregu: 12 teams consisting of region’s youngsters to present their products at Balkathon finale

Sarajevo – The finale of the third Western Balkans’ online competition for the best digital solutions, BALKATHON 3.0 is to take place on Tuesday, 6 September 2022, at the event starting at 10.00 hrs in Pristina, and live on the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) YouTube channel and Facebook page. 


20 August 2022 | News

Croatians Klara Sovagovic and Josip Lukic gets Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film

Sarajevo - Klara Sovagovic and Josip Lukic, young Croatian directors, won Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film with a movie It's Not Cold for Mosquitoes, at the 28th Sarajevo Film Festival. This award, whose patron is the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), has been presented at the SFF closing ceremony last night in Sarajevo.


03 August 2022 | News

RCC's Instagram account under attack

RCC’s official Instagram account was attacked yesterday and is inactive until further notice. If u notice any activity from our account please do not interact. Cyberattacks are very much real, especially on social media. Be careful and mindful.


28 June 2022 | News

Bregu: Having an environment that supports innovation and creativity helps our democracies to be stronger

Tirana – “There is a political decision on when our economies will become full EU member states, but there is also a responsibility all of us carry on how to make our economies closer to the European standards present here in this region. So, for all of us who share a sense of discomfort after the last week’s EU summit, I have to say there are deep and concrete figures and ...


28 June 2022 | News

Bregu: We hope Butterfly Innovation Award will shine a light on the regional innovation community and its undiscovered potential

Tirana – “This spring we launched the first Regional Butterfly Innovation Award. ‘What is now proved was once only imagination’- this Blake’s quote fits perfectly the 154 ideas in six competing categories - largely exceeded our boldest expectations. Women led almost half of the teams or most team members were women. This competition proves that innovation can ...


26 June 2022 | News

RCC to award six best innovative solutions from the Western Balkans

Sarajevo/Tirana – The winners of the first Butterfly Innovation Award competition the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) launched in April this year are to be presented on Monday, 27 June 2022 in Tirana, Albania, on the side-lines of the Ministerial Meeting of the Western Balkans Steering Platform on Research and Innovation & Education and Training. The Award Ceremony has been co-organised ...


24 June 2022 | News

Bregu: Support of Western Balkan citizens to regional cooperation remains stable at 76%

Brussels – “While many things change, our public and business perceptions surveys remain a truthful source of sentiments across the region. At times, the results surprise us, sometimes they serve as a wake-up call, while on other occasions they confirm that our efforts are not in vain as citizens and businesses feel the benefits of our work. 76% of Western Balkan citizens find ...


22 June 2022 | News

RCC to Present 2022 Balkan Barometer & SecuriMeter in Brussels on Friday

Brussels/Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the 2022 editions of Balkan Barometer and SecuriMeter, on Friday, 24 June 2022, starting at 10:00, in Brussels. This is the 8th edition of Balkan Barometer, and the second one for Western Balkans SecuriMeter. The entire presentation will be streamed live at RCC’s YouTube and Facebook. 


17 June 2022 | News

Bregu: Establishing one single market should stay the ultimate goal of Western Balkans

Ohrid – “Rome is not built in one day, and building a single market is easier said than done. The process of Western Balkans economic integration and its EU integration is not an easy one, but I hope it will not take us 35 years to get there, as it took the European Union to build one single market. None of us in this region has any luxury of losing any single day, especially ...


14 June 2022 | News

RCC Youth Lab Project hosts the final conference on youth employment in the Western Balkans

Budva/Sarajevo – “Inadequate employment opportunities are one of the biggest problem young people face. One in 3 young persons are unemployed, which means the Western Balkans youth unemployment rate is almost double the EU rate of 17%. According to Balkan Barometer 2022 – 18 out of 100 Western Balkan citizens worry about the brain drain, while 5 year ago that number was ...


11 June 2022 | News

Dr. Erhard Busek Champion of Regional Cooperation

Sarajevo/Thessaloniki – “In one of his last conveys he said: “Equating the EU with the Europe means leaving out a quarter of the continent – and a rather important part, as Eastern and Southeastern Europe border on world powers and vital regions.” Busek was gentle, humanitarian, liberal, a man who believed in a meeting of the minds as a key to the European endeavour. ...


10 June 2022 | News

Bregu: We defined and put forward the leading regional cooperation & integration frameworks, now one market is the ultimate goal of Western Balkans

Thessaloniki - The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Majlinda Bregu took part at the South East Europe Cooperation Process events - the meeting of SEECP Ministers of Foreign Affairs and the Summit of SEECP leaders - in Thessaloniki today. The meetings’ participants commended the work of the RCC and its Secretary General as well as the achievements in streamlining ...


09 June 2022 | News

Bregu: As long as we continue to subscribe to dialogue, compromise and cooperation, we invest in long-term stability, security and prosperity

Thessaloniki – “Under the political guidance of SEECP and in consultations with all relevant actors and stakeholders, RCC identified those gaps in which the region should invest with technical as well as political capital. These all fall under the category of sustainable development, green and digital transformation, pooling of knowledge and resources, and enhancing inclusivity. ...


08 June 2022 | News

Champion of Regional Cooperation to round off 14th RCC Annual Meeting

Sarajevo/Thessaloniki – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to hold its 14th Annual Meeting on Thursday, 9 June in Thessaloniki. RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu will present the RCC Annual Report and major accomplishments and results of the organisation in the past year while putting it in the context of current political and economic situation in the region. 


01 June 2022 | News

Kapetanovic: Disinformation is neither an overnight phenomenon nor can it have an overnight solution

Sarajevo - The Western Balkans has unfortunately always been susceptible to divisive narratives that always bring along hatred and violence. As the events unravel it is our constant responsibility to cultivate understanding and awareness of this phenomenon in our region. Good news is that the Western Balkan citizens have understood a detrimental potential of disinformation – as 74% ...


31 May 2022 | News

Bregu: Regional cooperation is complex and hard hitting, but it’s the way forward

Rotterdam – “Our realities today are drastically different, with the war in Ukraine sending shockwaves and exacerbating two trends that were already in the making: slowed growth and inflation. For an illustration, food and beverage prices increased between 7% in Albania and 13% in Serbia. Overall inflation is projected to reach whooping 6.3% in 2022. But beside inflation and higher ...


23 May 2022 | News

Balkathon 3.0 info session set for Friday, 27 May 2022

Sarajevo - If you're interested in participating in the Balkathon 3.0 but aren't sure where to start, join us for a brief event this Friday, 27 May at 13:00 CET! During info session we will briefly explain all details about Balkathon registration process and answer on all your questions. Info session will be held online via Zoom platform.


18 May 2022 | News

Bregu: With slowed growth & inflation, higher energy & food prices, Western Balkans will have to amp-up regional cooperation

Sarajevo - It is very difficult to sugar-coat the severity of economic effects of the war on the Western Balkans. It is equally difficult to accurately predict the true and longer-term impact, or to identify the opportunities for the region along the way. Our realities today are drastically different, with the war in Ukraine sending shockwaves and exacerbating two trends that were already ...


12 May 2022 | News

Bregu: Removing barriers is the first step in positioning Western Balkans at the world tourism map 

Tirana – “Tourism has a vast potential as a major catalyst for job creation and a driving force for economic growth and development especially for tourism dependent regions like ours. In 2019 more than 12 million people visited Western Balkans, which brought us a profit of 7.2 billion euros. The post-pandemic period of 2021 shows 70% recovery in all tourism visits, while WB regional ...


11 May 2022 | News

RCC to host Western Balkans Ministerial Conference on Tourism Development

Tourism has a great potential to accelerate progress and transform threats into opportunities


06 May 2022 | News

Balkathon 3.0 is on: RCC supports the best digital solutions in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo – For the third time in a row, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching an online competition for the best digital ideas and solutions from the Western Balkans - Balkathon 3.0. Applications are open until 16 June. 


20 April 2022 | News

Bregu: Enhanced regional cooperation and clear enlargement prospect for the region are vital to overcome challenges

Brussels/Sarajevo – “The war in Ukraine will affect economic growth in the region. Although share of economic output directly tied to Russia and Ukraine is relatively small for the Western Balkans as a whole, the economic ties on essential sectors such as energy and agriculture have exposed the region vulnerability and raised the inflation. The escalation of conflict is already ...


08 April 2022 | News

Regional Cooperation Council and Roma Integration project Celebrate International Roma Day

Belgrade – 8 of April is International Roma Day, a time to celebrate the culture, heritage, and accomplishments of Roma. The journey of Roma is one marked by injustice, but it is also a story of happiness, pride and satisfaction. Despite the challenges they face, Roma continue to move forward and develop their culture and traditions.  As this day provides an opportunity for Roma ...


07 April 2022 | News

WBYL: Giving Western Balkans’ youth an insight into the best EU practices and standards is a base for future regional transformative policies

Ljubljana/Zagreb – “The best way to exchange knowledge and practice and to hear and see first-hand what it makes for successful and strong youth cooperation is to bring youth from the Western Balkans’ National Youth Councils or Youth Umbrella Organisations to the EU to witness work of well-established EU National Youth Councils. Besides expanding cooperation networks, this ...


31 March 2022 | News

Imagine. Innovate. Create: RCC Launches Western Balkans Butterfly Innovation Award

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching a Regional Butterfly Innovation Award seeking innovative, scalable and market-based solutions from the Western Balkans. The Butterfly Innovation Award fund is set at 30,000 EUR, where the best solution in each of the 6 categories will get the prize of 5,000 EUR.  


16 March 2022 | News

Bregu: European perspective important for socio-economic progress, but also for security and stability

Sarajevo/Tirana – “The times we are living in are not glamorous, on the contrary these are dark moments. We are all heartened and deeply saddened by the unjust war Ukrainian people are going through. The economic impact of the war stretches beyond Ukraine's borders. Concern is present in the Western Balkans, as the geopolitical and economic problems make our region sensitive ...


11 March 2022 | News

Bregu: When women engage, take responsibilities, grow and help each other they can be a rising tide that lifts all boats

Tirana – “The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is launching today the first Regional Women in Entrepreneurship Network in the Western Balkans. We will not boil the sea right away. But sometimes the smallest act can lead to the biggest impact. We will engage ourselves not only to connect women with each other but also to lend a helping hand with the informational support and ...


08 March 2022 | News

Western Balkans: RCC to present ‘Women Who Launch – Regional Network of Women in Entrepreneurship’

Sarajevo/Tirana – Instead of happy 8th of March, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is announcing the launching of the Western Balkans (WB) Regional Network of Women in Entrepreneurship, at an event taking place this Friday (11 March) in Tirana. The Launch will gather a number of businesswomen from the entire region, and also serve as an opportunity to recognise WB Women Entrepreneurs ...


24 February 2022 | News

Miscevic: Emigration is a major challenge to the Western Balkans, but it could also be a great opportunity

Belgrade – “War risks scrambling the logic of our common endeavour to make the Western Balkans a better region. But let me start with the information that by 2020 more than 4.6 million people have left the Western Balkans. People leave the region for various reasons, mainly because of large income gaps between their home economies and the western region. All this affects the WB ...


20 February 2022 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans’ growth potential can be unlocked only through regional economic integration

Munich – “European integration and transatlantic cooperation should not look decoupled in the Western Balkans (WB). It’s high time to put the process of EU accession of the WB into the spotlight before too late becomes a lifetime. This is the centre of gravity for the future of the Western Balkans. The European perspective is the drive that makes the process of cooperation ...


12 February 2022 | News

RCC to recognise Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) has a pleasure to announce that we are launching the Western Balkans Women Entrepreneurs of the Year initiative, one that will hopefully become a tradition, to recognise women who have started and developed their own business and contributed to new and sustainable jobs for other women and men in our region. 


14 December 2021 | News

Bregu: It will take 257 years to close the current gender gap worldwide

Sarajevo – “Women in the Western Balkans account for only 27.5% of business owners and just 14.2% of companies’ top managers are females. Despite an evolving ecosystem of start-ups and innovation hubs in the Western Balkans, the number of women start-up entrepreneurs remains low, accounting for only 10-12% of founders. It will take 135.6 years to close the current gender ...


13 December 2021 | News

Usein: The school dropout rate of Roma children increased by 11%, while every second Roma reported reduced income due to the impact of Covid-19

Belgrade (13/12/2021) – “The regional analyses on the impact of Covid-19 on Roma in the region confirmed that the highest (negative) consequences for Roma are detected in the areas of employment and education. Three out of four Roma children did not receive any help during online lectures, both from their teachers or classmates, and the dropout rate increased by almost 11% at ...


10 December 2021 | News

Bregu: By risking the youth potential we are risking the engine of a sustainable regional future

Tirana/Sarajevo – “Statistics tell us that two thirds of young people would be willing to emigrate; that the total education costs of people who leave the region in one year vary from 840 million to 2.46 billion EUR; and that about one fifth are unemployed and nearly a quarter are neither in employment, nor in education or training. But the comprehensive transformation of the ...


09 December 2021 | News

RCC: Western Balkans Youth Lab on Mental Help kicks off in Tirana

Tirana – The Youth Lab on Mental Health, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Western Balkans Youth Lab Project (WBYL), has kicked off in Tirana today. 


06 December 2021 | News

Bregu: EU and Balkans security challenges are becoming ever more interrelated amidst new global threats

Paris/Sarajevo – “The European Union and the Western Balkans security challenges are becoming ever more interrelated and connected to a set of a new global threats. We have to face that we are at an inflection point. We might soon be facing a crisis—a humanitarian and security crisis, as security issues are common, so common and collective should also be our response,” ...


15 November 2021 | News

Bregu: The antidote to slowing down EU enlargement process is more ambitious integration of Western Balkans in the EU single market policies

Brussels/Sarajevo: “European perspective of the Western Balkans is the drive that makes the process of cooperation beneficial to all in the long-term. I believe EU has all the leverage needed to keep the EU perspective in WB alive. Without a credible path to EU membership, the WB could easily succumb to regional nationalism” said Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council ...


26 October 2021 | News

Bregu: RCC takes pride in achieving more tangible results for Western Balkan citizens

Belgrade – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) has been awarded by the European Western Balkans for its unwavering commitment to the European future of the region, continued strengthening of regional cooperation and connecting the region by facilitating the Roam-Free-Western-Balkans, as well as principled promotion and work on furthering economic cooperation in the Western Balkans. RCC ...


26 October 2021 | News

Youth-Tailored Solutions Require Youth Participation

Sarajevo/Online – “Cooperation, innovative solutions, equality, participation - these are the things we need today more than ever, as we establish an environment in which youth and policy makers sit together to constructively explore the ways in which youth priorities and needs can be met. To that end, let me congratulate the 40 members of the Pool of Experts being with us today ...


15 October 2021 | News

Bregu: European perspective of Western Balkans is the drive that makes the process of cooperation beneficial

Sarajevo – “European perspective of Western Balkans is the drive that makes the process of cooperation beneficial to all in long-term. It is of highest importance that both the region and the EU deliver on the respective commitments – particularly when we take into account that optimism regarding the time of accession has been declining.  More ambitious actions for ...


13 October 2021 | News

Bregu proposes creation of ‘Digital Identity’ system for Western Balkan citizens, modelled on the EU one

Podgorica – “We are racing to reach high standards of EU MS. Despite trying to run with the same speed as EU MS, we started our race later and hence we can never reach EU unless “phasing in” in EU policies is duly implemented,” said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) at the closing of the 4th Digital Summit of the Western ...


12 October 2021 | News

Digital Solutions: Six new ‘made in Western Balkans’ products presented at the 4th Digital Summit

Sarajevo/Podgorica – Six new ‘made in Western Balkans’ digital products have been presented at the 4th WB Digital Summit in Podgorica today. Authors of the products connecting digital with organic food, agriculture, sales, health, transportation services, small businesses, and environment-friendly plastic are all the winners of the second Balkathon, regional annual competition ...


10 October 2021 | News

Western Balkans Digital Summit opens in Podgorica tomorrow

Sarajevo/Podgorica - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is once again supporting the biggest digital event in the region - the Western Balkans Digital Summit (WBDS) - the forth in a row annual event on digital cooperation in the region. This year, WBDS will be hosted by the Montenegrin Government and will be held in hybrid mode, from 11 to 13 October 2021, closing with the Ministerial ...


06 October 2021 | News

Bregu: It is crunch time to deliver on reducing roaming costs between the EU and Western Balkans

Brdo pri Kranju/Sarajevo – “As the agendas of regional cooperation build in intensity and challenges get bigger, we witness daily that the process of cooperation among Western Balkan Six cannot afford a stalemate,” said Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, at the EU-Western Balkans Summit that gathered EU and WB leaders at Brdo pri Kranju ...


18 September 2021 | News

Bregu, Escobar discuss regional economic integration

Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu met with US State Department officials, including newly appointed US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Gabriel Escobar in Washington yesterday to discuss regional cooperation, single market in the region, security cooperation and Western Balkans green agenda. 


17 September 2021 | News

Italy to host EU-Balkan Youth Forum in November

Rome/Sarajevo – The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, in partnership with the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), is going to host the EU-Balkan Youth Forum on 22-26 November 2021 in Rome. The Forum is to gather students from all over Europe to talk about the common challenges of the future of Europe and Balkans' full EU membership.


07 September 2021 | News

Bregu: It is time for youth to be louder and play smarter

Skopje – “I would highly encourage you to leave the region. Yes, go abroad and see other cultures, but come back. Only by learning from others we can make our region better place for all of us and make a change. That is why we do not want to invent algorithm, but to make youth voices being heard. In that regard, I want to compliment you for trying hard to implement policies and ...


06 September 2021 | News

Bregu: RCC to launch regional coalition on jobs and skills to keep youth in the region

Skopje – “There is still high interest of youngsters to stay in the region. And this is our advantage. They are our greatest asset. They are the engine driving regional cooperation and EU accession because they see the opportunities and they do not carry the historic baggage of conflict from previous generations.”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation ...


20 August 2021 | News

Romanian Alexandru Mironescu gets Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film

Sarajevo - Young Romanian Director, Alexandru Mironescu, with his movie Summer Planning, got a Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film, at an award ceremony of the 27th Sarajevo Film Festival held last night. The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is a patron of this award since its inception in 2017.


13 August 2021 | News

Bregu: Cooperation between youth is crucial for the future of the region

Sarajevo - For the 5th time in a row the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the patron of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the Best Student Film at the 27th Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), opening today and lasting until 20 August. 


02 July 2021 | News

Regional Roaming Agreement is clear: Roaming charges in the Western Balkans are now ZERO

The Regional Cooperation Council is pleased and happy that the roam like at home has entered into force in the Western Balkans as of 1 July. We take pride and are happy that this successful process we facilitated in eliminating barriers, borders, and tariff related to mobile traffic in the region has finally happened. It is result of the hard work between the region’s governments, regulatory ...


02 July 2021 | News

Bregu: 71% of young people from Western Balkans would go live and work abroad – this is an alarm bell for us all

Ohrid – “The prospect of potential EU membership has been a driving force during all these years, for all Western Balkan economies. According to the Balkan Barometer data, the support of Western Balkans citizens of the EU membership is steadily increasing. Compared to 2016, when it was supported by 39% of WB citizens, 62% of the citizens are supporting it now. We don’t know ...


28 June 2021 | News

Bregu: Discrimination against Roma remains very high, and we have to take actions to reduce and prevent it

Sarajevo – “According to the Balkan Barometer 2021, around 40% of the businesses in the Western Balkans are still reluctant to hire Roma even when they meet the criteria. 63% of Western Balkan citizens do not want their children to share the classroom with Roma children. So, while Poznan Declaration adopted by the region’s leaders 2 years ago clearly stipulates achievements ...


27 June 2021 | News

As of 1 July roaming in the Western Balkans will be 0 - Stay Charged, Roam Free

Sarajevo – As of 1 July 2021 the entire Western Balkans will be a roaming free zone. Roaming costs between Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia will be zero. 


25 June 2021 | News

Bregu: People want and need to be connected in many ways and Roaming Free region is one of the ways enabling it

Podgorica – “People want and need to be connected in many ways and Roaming Free region is one of the ways enabling it. Looking back three years ago, when the Western Balkan Leaders decided to lower the roaming prices within the region, no one had thought that we would have region with 0 roaming charges that soon. And here we are, counting days before Roaming Free Western Balkans,” ...


24 June 2021 | News

Bregu: Balkan Barometer reveals human uncertainty and vulnerability are main concerns followed by some goodish news on benefits of regional cooperation

Tirana – “This, seventh in a row, Balkan Barometer shows human uncertainty and vulnerability are the main concerns followed by some goodish news which is the consciousness about the benefits of regional cooperation. For 49% of Western Balkan citizens, unemployment is the biggest problem, as it is for young people as well, while 46% are most worried about the economic situation. ...


22 June 2021 | News

RCC to Present Balkan Barometer 2021 - Public and Business Viewpoints on Situation in our Region

Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the 2021 edition of Balkan Barometer on Thursday, 24 June 2021, starting at 10:00, in Tirana. This is the 7th edition of annual public and business opinion survey commissioned by the RCC which examines Western Balkan citizens and businesses perceptions and expectations towards a variety of thematic areas, such as the EU integration ...


17 June 2021 | News

Bregu: Voice, concerns, hopes & expectations of the people from the region are core of the RCC work

Antalya – Leaders of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) approved the RCC-developed strategy for socio-economic development of South East Europe (SEE) in the next decade – SEE2030 Strategy, at their Summit held in Antalya, Turkey today. 


16 June 2021 | News

Bregu: 2020 was difficult, but a real progress and achievements have been made for development of our region

Antalya – “Last year, ruled by the pandemic has definitely showcased the extent of our interconnectivity and interdependency and demonstrated that in cooperating, we boost our strengths and resilience. It is clear that regional socio-economic integration is crucial for regional development. There is no doubt about the fact that cooperation brings mutual benefit to its participants. ...


11 June 2021 | News

Data do matter for identifying effective measures and policies in addressing labour markets’ structural weaknesses, including informal employment in particular

Sarajevo/Online – “In 2019, the average employment rate in the Western Balkans (WB) grew to a historically high level, with new jobs being created throughout the region. New job creation by in large came to a halt in 2020 due to the effects of the coronavirus.  Despite overall economic growth prior to the pandemic, relatively low activity and employment rates compared to ...


10 June 2021 | News

Bregu: The distance between the vision & plan for Common Regional Market calls for more resolute actions

Tirana – “EU integration support in the Western Balkans continues to increase: this year it is backed up by 62% of citizens compared to 59% of last year. The support of our citizens and businesses of regional cooperation is even higher - 77% of citizens believe regional cooperation can contribute to better political, economic or security situation at home, while 69% of businesses ...


08 June 2021 | News

Bregu: Common Regional Market is a rule of thumb, not a law of nature

Sarajevo/Tirana – “Common Regional Market (CRM) is a rule of thumb, not a law of nature. It doesn’t apply to every single national vision a government or economy in the region has, nor to every kind of good or bad bilateral relations. It is a broaden-and-build plan, endorsed by the Leaders of this region to enable a better region. The RCC is only trying to steer an intense ...


31 May 2021 | News

Bregu: With regional youth unemployment rate at 35.1% the need to act is clear, as youth is our most precious asset

Sarajevo/Online – “Youth and jobs has not been a good combination in the Western Balkans for some time. The average regional youth unemployment rate in 2020 was 35.1%, which is more than double the European Union (EU) rate of 16.9%.  Some of it can be blamed on the COVID 19 pandemic that stopped job creation, but changing the situation with youth unemployment requires eliminating ...


28 May 2021 | News

Bregu: Congratulations to all Balkathon winners who showed young people of our region are innovative and creative

Sarajevo/ Podgorica/Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) presents winners of the second Western Balkans online competition for the best digital solutions, BALKATHON 2.0:


27 May 2021 | News

BALKHATHON 2.0 award ceremony: Six Best Teams to be Awarded for their Digital Solutions

Sarajevo/Podgorica – Winners of the second Western Balkans’ online competition for the best digital solutions, BALKATHON 2.0 are to receive their awards tomorrow, 28 May 2021, at the final event starting at 10.00 hrs live on the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) YouTube channel and Facebook page.   


24 May 2021 | News

Bregu: 70% of Western Balkans citizens are afraid their children or young relatives might be radicalised online

Sarajevo – “The current global pandemic made it clear that security threats are not taking any time off. The region finds it very important to work on addressing the security challenges in the Western Balkans. It is quite interesting that 55% of those 82% who point out organised crime as the main security threat say it is corruption that fuels its existence,” said Secretary ...


23 May 2021 | News

RCC to present Western Balkans SecuriMeter - the first-ever regional Public Opinion Survey on Security

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) with support of Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation will present the first-ever regional Public Opinion Survey on Security issues – Western Balkans SecuriMeter on Monday, 24 May 2021, starting at 10:00 CET. The presentation can be followed on Zoom and live on RCC social media channels, Youtube and Facebook. ...


19 May 2021 | News

Balkathon 2.0 Application Deadline Extends Until 21 May at 17.00 CET

You see yourself as the creator of new age? You have an idea that you want to develop? You seek an opportunity that will help your idea become reality? We have one word for you – Balkathon2.0


11 May 2021 | News

Balkathon 2.0 Info Session Set for Friday, 14 May

Sarajevo – With Balkathon 2.0 in motion for almost a week now, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is organizing Info session day on Friday, 14 May 2021 at 13.00 for all interested participants. During the Info session the RCC staff will explain all details about Balkathon registration process and answer questions related to the competition. The info session will be held online via ...


19 April 2021 | News

Bregu: 93% of young people in the Western Balkans believe public administrations should involve young people in decision-making

Sarajevo, Tirana – “According to Balkan Barometer 2021, 93% of young people in the Western Balkans age 18-24 believe that public administrations should strengthen mechanisms for consulting and involving young people in decision-making. This clearly shows the path for all our further actions in which youth, policy makers and donors will sit together to discuss in constructive way ...


15 April 2021 | News

Bregu: Men outnumber women in the region’s labour force by more than a million

Sarajevo/New York – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched today the Regional Network of Women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) as part of a RCC-UNDP joint initiative on Women Economic Empowerment (WEE), drawing on the Common Regional Market Action Plan 2021-2024.


14 April 2021 | News

Bregu, Grlic-Radman discuss South East Europe Strategy 2030 and Green Lanes between EU and WB

Sarajevo – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, welcomed the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Croatia, Gordan Grlić-Radman, at the organisation’s headquarters in Sarajevo today. 


08 April 2021 | News

Western Balkans endorses Tirana Declaration to Support Tourism in the Region

Sarajevo/Tirana – Ministers and representatives of the six Western Balkans (WB) governments endorsed the Tirana Declaration on supporting sustainable tourism recovery and growth in the region, at the high-level regional conference marking the finalisation of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s EU-funded Tourism Development and Promotion project, held in Tirana today.


08 April 2021 | News

Message on the occasion of 8 April, the International Roma Day

Today we mark one of the most important days for all Roma: the jubilee 50th Anniversary of the First World Romani Congress held back in 1971 in London. 


06 April 2021 | News

Tirana Declaration endorsement to mark the finalisation of RCC’s Tourism Development and Promotion project

Sarajevo, Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its Triple P Tourism Project are organising a 2-day Regional Conference - Tourism as a Key to Sustainable Development which will kick off on 7 April marking the finalisation of the RCC’s EU funded Triple P Tourism Development and Promotion project. Paving the way for tourism and travel industry rehabilitation, the participating ...


17 March 2021 | News

Bregu: 69% of Western Balkans businesses believe quality of regional cooperation is important for quality of their business

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Serbia, Nikola Selaković, in its Sarajevo headquarters today, where he met with the RCC delegation led by the organisation’s Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, discussing the regional cooperation and the implementation of the Common Regional Market Action Plan in particular. 


11 March 2021 | News

Bregu: 77% of Western Balkans citizens agree that the relations in the region are better than a year ago

Sarajevo/Tirana – “The months since our last meeting in October have been difficult with the onset of new Covid-19 waves and new variants of the virus turning things topsy-turvy with a downward spiralling. In terms of regional cooperation, the big good news was the success of the Sofia Summit of the Berlin Process and the endorsement of the Declaration on Green Agenda for the ...


08 March 2021 | News

RCC’s “WE’’ Campaign Continues: Only once you are authentic, can you truly bring your best into the business!

Sarajevo/Tirana/Belgrade – “Business world is harsh for young people, especially women in Western Balkans, where they account for only 27.5% of business owners, and just 14.2% of companies’ top managers are female. Gender prejudices are not vanished yet, but there are always those who "fight" them and win, like Zoja Kukic, an entrepreneur from Serbia. And we, as ...


02 March 2021 | News

Bregu: Futourismo is a new hope to help our region recover its tourism

Tirana/Sarajevo – Seven teams from the Western Balkans: •    Guidi for app Veni, Vidi, Guidi  •    BIB for 'Be in Balkan' Mobile Application,  •    Digital Clinic for e-Health Tourism •    TED for Safe Traveling Western Balkans •    Sanatec7 for 'Virtual Culture' •   ...


01 March 2021 | News

Six Western Balkans projects aimed at helping region’s tourism to be awarded 15.000 EUR each, at a ceremony tomorrow

Sarajevo/Tirana – On 3 February 2021, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its Triple P Tourism Project launched the 1st regional FUTOURISMO competition, seeking innovative digital solutions that will help mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the heavily affected sector of tourism. 


23 February 2021 | News

Roaming free Western Balkans as of 1 July 2021 brings the region one step closer to the WB-EU roaming charges reduction

Sarajevo – “The signing of the Western Balkans Regional Roaming Agreement in April 2019 was a historic accomplishment and one of the key deliverables of the Digital Agenda for the Western Balkans, producing tangible benefits for citizens while testing our commitment and confidence in regional dialogue. I am confident the region will deliver again and after the pandemic ends, our ...


03 February 2021 | News

RCC launches FUTOURISMO, regional competition to boost tourism in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its EU funded Tourism Project are organising the first Western Balkans FUTOURISMO competition, seeking innovative digital solutions that will help mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the heavily affected sector of tourism. 


02 February 2021 | News

Integrative Internal Security Governance (IISG) holds its 5th Board meeting for the first time under the RCC umbrella

Sarajevo – The Western Balkan interior ministers adopted the annual work plan and the two methodologies of the Integrative Internal Security Governance (IISG), and also approved the membership of seven new IISG partners at the fifth meeting of the IISG Board held for the first time under the umbrella of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Sarajevo today. 


05 January 2021 | News

RCC: Supporting Western Balkans tourism through art

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) nurtures a beautiful blossom in its midst, with a substance more resilient than any form we try to give to our incentives, the project that promotes tourism, the natural beauties and unique art of our blessed countries.


18 December 2020 | News

Bregu: We must change in order to provide healthier environment, cleaner air, to preserve fresh and drinking water, to survive

Sarajevo/Tirana - "The overwhelming 74% of Western Balkans (WB) citizens see pollution as a problem, which is not surprising, considering that this region holds the most polluted cities in the world, because 70% of our electricity is produced by burning coal. Not only this, 16 thermal power plants in the WB produce more pollution than 250 plants in the EU. Air pollution is directly responsible ...


14 December 2020 | News

Bregu: Instead of creating policies FOR youth we believe in co-creating policies WITH youth

Sarajevo/Tirana/Brussels - “Youth makes 21% of Western Balkans population. If we know that youth unemployment in the Western Balkans is over 35%; that it takes around 2 years for a young person to land the job after the school; that 25% of youth are not in employment, education and training; or that 71% of our youth are thinking to leave the region and find jobs abroad – than ...


11 December 2020 | News

Bregu: Hire women, promote women and invest in women - that is our future

Sarajevo/Tirana/New York - "What we are launching today is a platform which will allow us all to strategise on how to best contribute to unlocking women power in the region. The reasons are obvious. Prior to pandemic, almost two-thirds of working-age women in the Western Balkans were either unemployed or outside the labour force. Unlocking the potential of half the population is not ...


10 December 2020 | News

RCC, UNDP to launch ‘Women’s Economic Empowerment: Areas for joint actions in the Western Balkans’ initiative

Tirana/Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will be launching an initiative, 'Women’s Economic Empowerment: Areas for joint actions in the Western Balkans', aiming to enhance collaboration among different stakeholders and underpin systemic change in addressing gender inequalities and co-designing initiatives on ...


07 December 2020 | News

‘Regional cooperation’ and ‘regional integration’ are the two sides of the same coin

Brussels/Sarajevo - "‘Regional cooperation’ and ‘regional integration’ are the two sides of the same coin. Integrating markets might be more of a process of EU integration. But regional cooperation is more than integrating markets. It is a political process. That is why the Common Regional Market Action Plan, signed by WB6 leaders in Sofia last month, is a good ...


20 November 2020 | News

Over-securitisation of illegal immigration can be dangerous, but neglecting its detrimental potential can be equally dangerous too

Sarajevo – “Illegal immigration is a complex, multifaceted phenomenon which no single country can fix alone. We should take into account the opinion of 63% of Western Balkan citizens who perceive it as a direct security threat. Over-securitisation of this issue can be dangerous, but neglecting its detrimental potential can be equally dangerous too. Currently, bilateral and regional ...


19 November 2020 | News

Addressing livelihood topics of social rights - jobs, wages, access to education, health care – more important than ever

Sarajevo/Brussels/Tirana – “It is no longer news that Western Balkan societies fall short in many socio-economic aspects. We, together with our partners – governments in the region, European Union (EU) and many others, work to reduce this gap between the region and the EU. Common Regional Market recently adopted in Sofia is a plan on how to overcome these challenges by boosting ...


17 November 2020 | News

Tackling undeclared work in times of COVID 19 pandemic focuses on prevention of declared work sliding back into the undeclared zone

Online – “Main aim of our work being promotion of regional cooperation in transforming the undeclared into declared work in the Western Balkans has so far resulted in gathering of the relevant region’s institutions around the regional Network. Today, at its 2nd plenary meeting the Western Balkans Network Tackling Undeclared Work shows commitment to deal with this demanding ...


12 November 2020 | News

Miscevic: We must work together on developing a culture of critical media literacy in our societies and build disinformation resilience

Sarajevo - “We must immediately begin to work together on developing a culture of critical media literacy in our societies and build disinformation resilience. Developing resistance to fake news should be viewed almost like a key component of the overall security policy of any Western Balkan economy,” said Tanja Miscevic, RCC’s Deputy Secretary General, at the opening of ...


10 November 2020 | News

Transformation will not happen overnight but setting bold goals will accelerate the change if we can work together

Sofia - A new phase of regional economic integration started today with the Western Balkans Six leaders endorsing the Common Regional Market Action Plan, and the Green Agenda for the Western Balkans, both facilitated by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), at the Berlin Process Summit held online in Sofia today.   


09 November 2020 | News

Western Balkan governments will have to shoulder responsibility to implement Common Regional Market

Sofia - “Tomorrow the six Western Balkan leaders will endorse the new Action Plan for this region - Common Regional Market. Common Regional Market is not a novelty from the scratch: It is a great plan based on four freedoms, the same as EU Single Market, strengthened with investment, digital, industry and innovation. We are proud to have shouldered the heavy burden of this process together ...


02 November 2020 | News

While EU and the world are advancing to fit to the Digital Age, we need to run twice as fast to close the discrepancies

Tirana/Sarajevo – “At the last years' Digital Summit in Belgrade we witnessed a success story when the ministers of the Western Balkans (WB) six in charge of information and communication technologies signed the new Regional Roaming Agreement, paving a way for roaming free WB in 2021. I’m confident the region will deliver again having full support from European Commission ...


26 October 2020 | News

We now pay between 83% and 96% less roaming charges in the entire Western Balkans, and as of July 2021 roaming costs will be 0

Tirana/Sarajevo – The Third Western Balkans Digital Summit (WBDS) has been opened in Tirana today, continuing its legacy, which started at the WBDS Skopje in 2018 – the first ever WB DS that initiated digital policy dialogue on WB digital transformation at the highest prime ministers level, followed by the DS in Belgrade in 2019 with the signing of the Regional Roaming Agreement. ...


25 October 2020 | News

Tirana to host Ministerial Meeting on Roma Integration: housing, civil registration, data collection & budgeting in focus

Tirana - The Ministers responsible for integration of Roma in the Western Balkans economies will meet in Tirana on Tuesday to discuss the progress achieved in the first year of implementation of the Declaration on Roma Integration endorsed at the Poznan Summit last year. The Roma Integration Declaration set important targets for the governments to achieve before they can join the EU, as Roma ...


23 October 2020 | News

Tirana to host the 3rd Western Balkans Digital Summit

Tirana/Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is once again supporting the biggest digital event in the region - the Western Balkans Digital Summit (WBDS) - the third in a row annual event taking the digital cooperation to the next level. This year WBDS will be hosted by the Albanian Government and will be in hybrid format, with online sessions during 26-28 of October 2020, ...


22 October 2020 | News

CRM is a stepping stone for the WB to align with EU single market rules

Belgrade/Sarajevo – “Some estimates say that regional economic integration in the Western Balkans could generate up to 2.5% of GDP growth should the level of integration reach the level of EFTA, and should it reach the EU level of integration, it could generate 6.7% of GDP growth. Therefore, I am pleased that by Sofia Summit on 10 November we will have a very good roadmap action ...


16 October 2020 | News

Bregu: The region needs common market to ensure free movement of business people, drivers and citizens in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo/Tirana/Skopje - “We are not a perfect region, but we want to make the best out of an imperfect picture. As a first step from today the Regional Cooperation Council is proud to facilitate an all-inclusive regional agreement on movement with ID cards. Our commercial and trade relations in the region cannot run anymore on business as usual basis. We have to have a common market, ...


15 October 2020 | News

Bregu: Common Regional Market is the way forward

Sarajevo, Tirana - “Multi Annual Action Plan for Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) is in its final stage of implementation. Now it’s clear that the region has benefited from this regional frame but is also ready for an upgrade. We have the Regional Roaming Agreement, Regional Investment Reform Agenda, Digital Summits as a success stories that remind us of the power of togetherness ...


01 October 2020 | News

Economic integration among the Western Balkans 6, and with the EU, is the most important in this moment

Tirana/Sarajevo – “I believe that closer relations in the process of European integration of the region, especially economic integration among the Western Balkans (WB) 6, and with the EU, are the most important in this moment. Because regional economic integration of the WB is not a self-standing process, but an instrument to increase region’s convergence with the EU single ...


30 September 2020 | News

Gender equality does not concern only women, but the whole society and gender mainstreaming benefits men just as it does women

Sarajevo – “The good news is that the percentage of women in armed forces in Western Balkans is increasing. According to regional ministries of defence, the share of women soldiers is 13% in Albania, 8,46% in BiH, 5% in North Macedonia, 8,17% in Montenegro and 15,68% Serbia. NATO average is 10,9%, while in Bulgaria that share grow from 12% to 20% in just a decade. Slovenia has ...


30 September 2020 | News

Moving Away from “Reducing Undeclared Work” Approach to “Transforming It into Declared Work” in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo – “Informal economy is a chronic problem of many economies, Western Balkans’ in particular, as estimates show that up to 30% of the employed persons in the region work undeclared. Today’s meeting is about to explore ways on how all institutions in charge of this issue – Labour Ministries, Inspectorates and Tax Authorities, can coordinate their work on ...


22 September 2020 | News

Bregu: With joint border crossing points Western Balkans could save 800 mil euro a year – we should set them among WB but also with EU

Sarajevo/Skopje/Belgrade – “If we would have more joint border crossing points and if those would be working 24/7, with all the regulation in place, phytosanitary proc


02 September 2020 | News

Growing number of internet users is potential for blossom of cybercrime, we need to step up protection

Sarajevo – “The world we live in has never been more connected. The number of Internet users has exceeded 4.5 billion, so 60% of world population is already online, and more than a half will be using social media by the end of 2020. Western Balkans is not legging behind these numbers; the number of users in Bosnia and Herzegovina increased by 81% in the last 15 years, in Kosovo* by 80%, ...


28 August 2020 | News

What would we expect from a more geopolitical EU?

Bratislava/Tirana/Sarajevo – “What would we expect from a more geopolitical EU? Simple: Clear and bold decisions to acknowledge the good of having Western Balkans in the EU as well as the damage associated with long prolong EU membership. Western Balkans citizens would expect more resilient and righteous decisions from EU Member States. Their domestic political landscape and worries often ...


20 August 2020 | News

Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film 2020 goes to Zeynep Dilan Süren for “The Great Istanbul Depression”

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is delighted to confirm that the young director Ms Zeynep Dilan Süren from Turkey with the movie “The Great Istanbul Depression” won the Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film, an award Powered by RCC since the inception of this competition category in 2017, at the official ceremony at 26th edition Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), ...


16 August 2020 | News

Miscevic: We need to focus on helping resolving issues young people are facing in order to keep them in our region

Sarajevo – “I am happy the RCC put youth and resolving issues they are facing, especially related to their career developments, and jobs in focus, with our EU-funded Youth Lab project that was launched beginning this year, but also through a series other activities, including our support for students, young filmmakers, from the region, through the Sarajevo Film Festival for 4 years in ...


13 August 2020 | News

Bregu: We’ve got your back, it’s youth time!

Sarajevo – For the 4th time in a row the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the patron of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the Best Student Film at the 26th Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), which this year, due to the corona virus pandemic, goes fully online.


16 July 2020 | News

Bregu: Balkathon – Smarten up for the future is not only regional response to pandemic outbreak but also a mind-setter for the changing, digital world

Sarajevo – Miron Lukač on behalf of Portal World Team from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albana Mucaj on behalf of the Kallz Training Center Team from Albania, and Dritan Mollanji on behalf of Symmetric Team from Albania were awarded for their best innovative solutions for Smart Tourism, Digital Learning and Online Payments at the final session of Balkathon, the 1st Regional Online Competition ...


15 July 2020 | News

BALKATHON FINALS: Best Digital Solutions from the Western Balkans to be Awarded at the Final Session of the 1st Regional Online Competition

Sarajevo -   1st Regional BALKATHON ends tomorrow, 16 July 2020, with selection of the 3 best innovative digital solutions out of 88 applicants from the Western Balkans, at the final online session.


03 July 2020 | News

Youth Unemployment in the Western Balkans: Youth is Crucial in Designing of Employment Policies

RCC’s Western Balkans Youth Lab and Employment and Social Affairs Platform Projects organized webinar tackling policymaking and youth unemployment in the region Sarajevo – “Numerous stories of unemployed young people across the region who want the leave in pursuit of a job and better life are loud and yet also seem silent.  That is why the Western Balkan Youth Lab (WBYT) project ...


02 July 2020 | News

1st Western Balkans Balkathon is ON: Apply and RCC will support best ideas for innovative digital solutions development with 10,000 EUR

Sarajevo - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is organising the first online Western Balkans’ Balkathon competition to trigger digital innovative and practical business solutions. The regional online Balkathon aims to help the Western Balkans citizens and businesses to recover from effects of the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak that has hit businesses and citizens in the first quarter of 2020 ...


01 July 2020 | News

Bregu: Regional Roaming Agreement was a regional success story

Sarajevo/Tirana – “On this date a year ago we started paying less money for our phone bills, as the Regional Roaming Agreement entered into force reducing roaming costs across the region (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia), as much as 99% in some cases. Data traffic increased for more than 60%, outgoing calls in roaming for more than ...


25 June 2020 | News

Bregu: It is up to the region to retain commitment to cooperation and bring forth tangible progress to citizens

Tirana/Sarajevo/Prishtina – The two meetings have been held today within the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) - the meeting of the SEECP Ministers of Foreign Affairs and the RCC Annual Meeting, which RCC co-organised with the outgoing Kosovo SEECP Chairmanship-in-Office (CiO).


24 June 2020 | News

Bregu: Cooperation is the only blueprint that holds the promise of ‘Stronger Together’

Sarajevo – “The regional cooperation continues to grow in prominence with an overwhelming majority of citizens supportive of its role in improving the political, economic and security situation in their home economies - 77%, and 65% of them believes that what brings WB citizens together is more important than what separates us. The quick spread of COVID -19 was a grim reminder ...


23 June 2020 | News

The Shape of the Things to Come - Presentation of Balkan Barometer 2020

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will present 2020 edition of Balkan Barometer on Wednesday 24 June 2020. This annual public and business opinion survey of the RCC examines the perception and expectations on life and work, prevalent socio-economic and political trends & regional and European integration in the Western Balkan. The 2020 edition presents for the first ...


16 June 2020 | News

Minister Cakaj visits RCC, meets Secretary General Bregu and expresses Albania’s support to RCC and regional cooperation

Sarajevo – Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs of Albania, Gent Cakaj, visited the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) office in Sarajevo today on the sidelines of his official visit to Sarajevo and meetings with highest Bosnia and Herzegovina’s officials.  Minister Cakaj said that he would consider his visit to Sarajevo incomplete without the visit to the RCC, as Albania is very ...


12 June 2020 | News

ESAP 2: Undeclared work in the Western Balkans needs to be formalized, to increase both public revenues and social security

Sarajevo – “The global pandemic caused by the COVID 19 virus has had a profound impact on businesses and workers, as well as economies across the Western Balkans. The undeclared workers, however, have been disproportionately affected since they generally work in low productivity jobs and have little to no savings, and are also mostly excluded from the government’s aid packages. ...


10 June 2020 | News

WBIF awards €8.3 million worth of grants financed by the EU for Western Balkans’ Digital, Environment and Social projects

Sarajevo/Brussels – Good news for the region come from the Brussels today as Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) Steering Committee approved eight grant applications for technical assistance from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo* and Serbia, at its session held online today. The projects 8,3 million EUR worth, financed by the European Union, covering digital, environment ...


01 June 2020 | News

Balkan Barometer: 80% of Western Balkans managers consider digital skills very important for doing businesses

Sarajevo/Belgrade/Zurich – “Benefits of digital technologies are multi-fold. Not only they can generate greater benefits from macroeconomic perspective but could also ease procedures and make borders less visible, processes less heavy, supply of new services to customers simpler and businesses much faster,“ said Tanja Miščević, Deputy Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation ...


26 May 2020 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans needs to switch its development trajectory from physical capital accumulation to knowledge accumulation

Sarajevo/Tirana/Geneva - “Still unpublished latest edition of the RCC’s annual public and business survey for the Wester Balkans -  Balkan Barometer 2020 shows that, as expected, internet was extensively used for communication purposes with the proliferation of social media (69%), while traditionally it was less popular for education (30%) and online shopping (22%). E-government ...


22 May 2020 | News

Green Agenda and Biological Biodiversity for the Western Balkans as important as all other Development Agendas

Sarajevo/Belgrade – “All economic and social development agendas, crucial for the development of our region and its EU-accession journey have to be accompanied by the equal efforts of environment protection and climate change responses. Biodiversity, in that context, is high on the list of priorities as endangering the other species makes us, humans, highly vulnerable as well. ...


19 May 2020 | News

RCC presents its new “Western Balkans Youth Lab” Project: It’s time to change– young people should take the lead

Sarajevo – The Western Balkans not rarely offers shocking facts about youth. From brain drain to labour migration, from mismatch of diplomas with labour market, prejudices or steep unemployment figures. We have decided to act by example. About 20% of all employees in the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) are young people, and only in the past two months 5 of them have joined us.


18 May 2020 | News

Western Balkans: Amazing virtual museum tours

18th May is International Museum Day and today we are coming together to celebrate the history, art and cultural heritage throughout the museums in the Western Balkans. Museums around the world have closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, meanwhile their virtual tours are still open and trending. From the comfort of your couch, through the following Western Balkans museums you are able ...


14 May 2020 | News

Bregu: Pandemic created a common awareness that at least for now humankind takes precedence over politics and disputes

Sarajevo – “For all its aggressiveness, the COVID-19 crisis also offers glimmers of hope. It has connected Western Balkans even more, this time in a fight against an invisible enemy. It has persuaded us that cooperation should be resilient. It has created a common awareness that at least for now humankind takes precedence over politics and disputes, while borders are considered ...


08 May 2020 | News

Italian operational protocols for treatment of COVID-19 patients shared with Western Balkans

Sarajevo/Tirana – “Italy has once again given a helping hand to the Western Balkans, and for that we are very grateful. Our Italian friends so generously shared with us their experience and operational protocols for treatment of patients infected with COVID 19. We, the RCC, had this modest task to translate these documents into all the languages of the region and share them with our partner ...


06 May 2020 | News

Bregu: No brilliant regional plan can succeed without strong political leadership and fully synchronized EU- WB trajectories

Sarajevo/Tirana/Zagreb - Now, almost 4 years after we initiated the work on Regional Economic Area (REA) the region is ready to embark on the next phase of deepening regional economic cooperation assure the WB6 economies to have ownership first, and bringing the region closer to the EU internal market. While it is my pleasure to officially commit today the full readiness and dedication ...


30 April 2020 | News

RCC Initiates Regional Working Group on Digital Upskilling in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo – In an attempt to address high digital skills gap present in the Western Balkans and especially obvious in the current situation of economies’ lockdown when many jobs have moved from onsite to online, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) initiated and hosted the first meeting of the regional Balkan Digital Skills Multi Stakeholder Working Group. 


23 April 2020 | News

Regional innovation fund could trigger economic recovery of the Western Balkans

Sarajevo – In an attempt to address high digital skills gap present in the Western Balkans and especially obvious in the current situation of economies’ lockdown when many jobs have moved from onsite to online, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) initiated and hosted the first meeting of the regional Balkan Digital Skills Multi Stakeholder Working Group. 


18 April 2020 | News

Bregu: Tourism in the Western Balkans already feels the pinch of COVID-19 pandemic

Sarajevo – “As this pandemic keeps billions of people at home, one sector is already feeling the pinch - tourism.  One in five booked trips to Western Balkans planned for 2020 is cancelled. And this makes situation notoriously difficult, knowing that tourism contributes to 10.2% of the region’s GDP in the Western Balkans, while 11.4 % of the total employees are from Travel & ...


08 April 2020 | News

Roma, as all other citizens, are respecting the imposed measures, understanding that when one is in danger, the whole region is in danger

Belgrade/Sarajevo – “To all my fellow Roma, I would like to congratulate 8th of April, the International Roma Day, which marks Roma history, culture, language and heritage. Unfortunately, this year the celebration must take place under extraordinary circumstances, due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the enforced preventive measures. Roma, like others, are also affected by this common ...


07 April 2020 | News

COVID - 19 pandemic causes by far the largest-ever cyber security threat to the region and world

Sarajevo - On 6 April, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted an online consultative meeting of South East Europe National Security Authorities (SEENSA) participants, in order to set the course for the implementation of planned activities in light of the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as to discuss the potential role of the platform in managing and mitigating ...


24 March 2020 | News

Statement by RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu on EU Member States’ decision to open negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia

Tirana/Sarajevo – “Good news for us today as the EU Member States reached a long overdue political agreement to open the accession talks with Albania and North Macedonia, confirming that the future of the Western Balkans is in Europe. I wholeheartedly congratulate both Albania and North Macedonia which demonstrated their determination to advance the EU reform agenda and continue ...


23 March 2020 | News

On its way - Green Corridor enabling easy supply of goods within the Western Balkans and between the region and the European Union

Sarajevo – On the initiative of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), representatives of the Governments from South East Europe, European Union (EU) and regional stakeholders are working on the establishment of the Green Corridor within the region and between the Western Balkans (WB) and the EU. The Corridor is envisaged as a set of special procedures that would enable unhindered ...


20 March 2020 | News

Bregu: The only way to prevent shortages of medical equipment or food in WB is to simplify and harmonize sanitary controls – a Green Corridor

Tirana/Sarajevo – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, spoke last night at the Tirana based RTV Klan’s Opinion show, about the major distress in the region after the European Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/402, which imposes new rules, for the export of personal protective equipment and medical equipment outside the EU. ...


19 March 2020 | News

RCC WE campaign continues with young Western Balkans’ women studying science, technology, engineering, mathematics

Sarajevo – Ivana Todorovska is a smart hard-working young woman, a student of Analytical Biochemistry at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics in Skopje. Ivana’s message to all of us, young women and girls in particular, is that although it is very hard to become a scientist, she won’t stop trying.  


18 March 2020 | News

Bregu: Cooperation is crucial in having effective response to fight the pandemic

Sarajevo – “These are days of rapid developments by a minute, both at the level of EU and our region and timing, information sharing and coordination is of essence. Cooperation is crucial in having the effective response to fight the pandemic. 


08 March 2020 | News

RCC’s ‘’WE’’ campaign: Don’t be afraid to dream and to make your dreams come true!

Sarajevo – “We are in the 3rd decade of 21st century and yet the tales of successful business women are not frequent but rather breaking news. In the Western Balkans even more so as only 1 in 5 women owns a business. And not only that – employment rate of women in the region in 2018 was only 43.7%”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC).


05 March 2020 | News

Society should provide young people with knowledge and skills to resist negative influence and propaganda of extremists and radicalized groups

Tirana – “Numbers speak louder than words on the scope of vulnerability of youth to online radicalisation and violent extremism, often leading to terrorism. The World Bank finds that 23% of youngsters in the Western Balkans, aged between 16-24, are neither in school, job, nor in training, feeling excluded from social developments. Combined with registered significant increase in ...


04 March 2020 | News

RCC tourism project exceeds plans; total number of development grants reaches 36

Sarajevo – “With the award of the eight new grants to be implemented over the next six months throughout the Western Balkans, we have reached the total number of 36 tourism development and promotion grants, which well exceeds the originally set target to have some 30 development initiatives implemented through our tourism project,” said Snjezana Derviskadic, RCC Tourism Development ...


21 February 2020 | News

RCC presents Balkan Monumental Trail, a new regional tourism route

BELGRADE – “We are very pleased to have used today, the Belgrade International Fair of Tourism, as a staging ground for the launch of the new joint regional cultural tourism route called the Balkan Monumental Trail,” said Snjezana Derviskadic, RCC’s Tourism Development and Promotion Project Team Leader. 


21 February 2020 | News

Bregu: Without strategic innovation Western Balkans will not turn inventions into investments – we need to think bigger

Tirana – “Without a strategic innovation function that can enhance the capacities to incubate and accelerate new technologies, companies in the Western Balkans will continue to stockpiling undeveloped inventions and this will not return in an investment. We risk falling into the trap of having breakthrough ideas that are incrementally executed. Innovation in the region is 33,7 % while ...


17 February 2020 | News

Bregu: Affinity, empathy and kinship give sense of cooperation and solidarity, not bureaucracy and “business as usual”

Brussels – “As an Albanian, I’m overwhelmed and most emotional by the immense support shown here today. The November earthquake was maybe the longest minute of my life so far. It is heartbreaking to hear testimonies of those who lost their dearest ones and face the uncertainty of the future for the ones that had lost their home. It is not bureaucracy and a “business as usual” ...


10 February 2020 | News

Kapetanovic: The art of diplomacy is finding functional solutions for real-life issues

Pristina – “There are achievements, success stories, but there are also bilateral disputes in our region as well as a lot of mistrust and suspicion. Bilateralism sometimes threatens to diminish regionalism. But what is the art of diplomacy if not finding a way to work around disputes to find a functional solution to concrete, real-life issues which we face? We can find an alternative ...


31 January 2020 | News

Bregu: We are committed to enable the region to be an exporter of security

Berlin – “Nearly half of all respondents of the RCC’s Balkan Barometer are unhappy with the security situation in their economy - with estimates that five out of the six surveyed economies, Albania excluded, make the world’s top 20 list for civilian gun ownership. However we are happy to notice that the security reality in the region have already started improve for the better”, ...


31 January 2020 | News

Bregu: This is much needed opportunity to work together on transformation of our countries into the future EU member states

Berlin – The Republic of France has decide to re-join the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), announced French Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, at the high-level meeting of the Franco-German Coordination Initiative on Small Arms and Light Weapons Control in the Western Balkans, taking place in Berlin today.  


30 January 2020 | News

RCC Secretary General Bregu meets Commissioners Varhelyi and Gabriel in Brussels: RCC remains reliable EU partner in the region

Brussels – “2020 is a critical year for the region and mutual relations between the EU and the Western Balkans but also for unhindered economic growth. RCC remains a reliable partner of the EU in the region but also a reliable partner of the region in the EU. We all have high hopes and expectations of new, positive developments during the Croatian Presidency of the EU and the upcoming ...


28 January 2020 | News

Bregu: Brain drain the biggest challenge of this decade - Western Balkans working age population declined by more than 400,000 in past 5 years

Sarajevo – “More than 700 000 jobs have been added to the workforce during the past seven years and unemployment has moved for almost a quarter (23%) to around 16%, across the region. They say a tide lifts all boats, large and small. However, not everybody benefited from these economic and labour market improvements during the last decade”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General ...


17 January 2020 | News

Bregu: Parliamentary dialogue and cooperation remain a steady beacon in the ongoing struggle for democracy

Tirana – “In times when politics is in critical condition, Parliamentary dialogue between the Western Balkans and EU on the future of the region is much needed.  Therefore I would propose to start an institutionalised dialogue In this regard, and the regional Cooperation Council (RCC) stands ready to facilitate it” said RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu at the opening of the ...


08 January 2020 | News

RCC: Listen to Women as no challenge can keep them from fulfilling their dreams

RCC’s Women Empowerment - WE- campaign continues featuring remarkable women from the Western Balkans and brings you Uta Ibrahimi - “At the beginning they told me climbing was for men and I did a lot of work to prove them wrong and change that mentality. You can do the same, just listen to women!”


27 December 2019 | News

Bregu: I am gratified that during the leaving year regional cooperation delivered, even under stress

Sarajevo  - At the end of 2019, it is time to wrap up the year, summing up activities of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and announcing our future plans: Here is the statement of our Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu on this occasion: 


25 December 2019 | News

RCC fully committed to regional cooperation

Sarajevo – There have been many discrepancies and a lack of clear information on the role of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in the so called “Mini-Schengen” initiative meetings. Regional Cooperation Council is invited to “Mini-Schengen” meetings together with EU, USA, WB, EBRD & EIB, to hear the proposals of the Western Balkan (WB) leaders.


21 December 2019 | News

Bregu: Pleased to see that Western Balkans regional initiative focuses on people and clearly outlines EU integration as its final goal

Tirana – “We at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) are pleased to see that this regional initiative places primary focus on people, particularly that it clearly outlines our ultimate destination – the European Union (EU). We also welcome ambitious list for the next meeting already in January 2020, especially in the part on the framework agreement allowing citizens to live, ...


13 December 2019 | News

Housing is essential to one's sense of dignity, safety, and inclusion

Belgrade - The RCC’s Roma Integration 2020 project held its fourth Task Force meeting in Belgrade on 12 and 13 December 2019. The key stakeholders of the project reviewed the status of activities in the seven participating economies, discussed the status of implementation of the Declaration of the Western Balkans Partners on Roma Integration and EU Enlargement (Poznan Declaration), ...


11 December 2019 | News

EU boosts support for regional cooperation in the Western Balkans

Brussels - In the margins of the Western Balkan Sherpas meeting, which took place in Brussels today in the run-up to the EU-Western Balkans Summit in May 2020, the European Commission reinforced its support to regional cooperation in the Western Balkans. The signed contract for continued cooperation with RCC worth EUR 12.5 million aims at further strengthening RCC’s activities over the ...


05 December 2019 | News

RCC: We need dynamic regional responses to modern security challenges

Trieste – “83% of Europeans agree that fake news is a threat to democracy, yet it has become a new normalcy, sitting between a freedom of speech and freedom to hate. Fake news is vastly contributing to hate speech which adds fuel to the fire of nationalism and violent extremism, especially on social media. That is a path towards youth radicalisation, a global problem, to which our region ...


03 December 2019 | News

Bregu: It’s time to come with a clear stand on the accession process of the Western Balkans

Brussels – “Time to end pretence!  EU should honour its Treaty and come with a clear stand on the accession process of the Western Balkans. Thanks to the new EU Commission president  Ursula von der for clearly articulating the vision of Europe as a continent. We hope this will be the goal and approach of all EU Member States. And we in the region need to roll up our ...


02 December 2019 | News

Bregu: It’s high time for the Western Balkans to address challenges and sensitivities with a clearer and ambitious vision

Brussels – “The region is at a different landscape. It is high time to address challenges and sensitivities with a clearer and ambitious vision. We are initiating the process of the new economic vision beyond 2020 in close consultation with all six Western Balkan (WB) economies and the European Union (EU)”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council ...


02 December 2019 | News

RCC continues developing tourism in the Western Balkans: 3rd call for proposals for tourism development grants published

SARAJEVO – As the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) implemented and EU funded Tourism Development and Promotion Project enters its final stage, the RCC published the 3rd Call for Proposals for the award of tourism development grants in the Western Balkans. The total value of the call is 320,000 euros which will be used to fund up to 7 different projects.


22 November 2019 | News

16 New Grants for Tourism Development and Promotion in Western Balkans Awarded by RCC, EU

Durres – “Today, with presenting the results of the completed 12 and awarding 16 new grants for the tourism development and promotion in the Western Balkans, we are showing you a part of the success story from this region, and it is not a success of policy-making or GDP but of the people. For us, tourism project is not just a matter of how many grantees are with us today – 16, or 12 ...


21 November 2019 | News

Bregu: Demographic trends in the Western Balkans and the EU are the best illustration of the real aspirations and needs of the citizens

Zagreb – “Both Europe and Western Balkans are changing demographically, frequently as a model of ‘sending’ and ‘receiving’ countries, as most of around 230,000 citizens have legally migrated from the region to the EU in 2018 alone, while more than 5 million (or 1/4 of the actual population) have migrated in the last 7 years. With young people these figures are even higher: although ...


19 November 2019 | News

Bregu: The region vests high hopes in the upcoming Croatian Presidency of the EU Council in 2020

Zagreb – “Priorities of the Croatian 6-month Presidency of the European Union (EU) Council beginning in January 2020 stressing the usage of full potential of infrastructure and human resources, connectivity and networking of the economies, mesh well with the regional cooperation goals set in our Regional Economic Area action plan (MAP REA). Western Balkan economies expect a lot of ...


18 November 2019 | News

RCC takes IISG – Western Balkans’ internal security governance platform under its wing

Skopje – “We will be bigger. As of next year the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will coordinate one of the most important agendas of the region: security. Security threats do not need any visa or border checks”, said the RCC's Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu after today’s 4th meeting of the Integrative Internal Security Governance (IISG) Board, held in Skopje, at which functional ...


12 November 2019 | News

Bregu: For us at RCC, the Regional Cooperation is a Developing Story

Sarajevo – “We have been asked and received a lot of questions on Novi Sad and Ohrid meetings, the so called “mini-Schengen” and our role in this.


10 November 2019 | News

Bregu: RCC supports all initiatives contributing towards EU ‘single market’-like agenda for Western Balkans

Ohrid – “The Regional Cooperation Council supports all initiatives that contribute towards an EU ‘single market’-like agenda for our region, based on the four freedoms. The initiatives should fully mirror the EU models and in such a way represent a stepping stone to our full EU integration”, said Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General Majlinda Bregu ...


08 November 2019 | News

Via Dinarica expands its regional coordination structure throughout Western Balkans

Non-governmental organisations from Albania, Kosovo* and Serbia joined today Via Dinarica regional coordination structure during a meeting organised by the RCC implemented and EU funded Tourism Development and Promotion Project in Tirana.


07 November 2019 | News

Via Dinarica just keeps getting better

It is 11 o’clock on an idle Monday and about to start raining in a tiny village of Rekë e Allagës in Rugova Mountain, all green with pine trees. Fetije Nikiqi is well under way to prepare cheese pie in a wooden stove while Hozefa Indorewala looks to the sky from the porch thinking just how far up the mountain have his friends gone and how damp might they be as they return for lunch.


07 November 2019 | News

Gender mainstreaming and the role of women in armed forces for the first time focus of the SEEMIC meeting

Ljubljana - “The role of women in armed forces is an important topic and I am pleased we are discussing it today in Ljubljana in particular, as Slovenia sets a remarkable example for the region with the ratio of over 70% of women making up its Armed Forces. Especially when we know that nowhere in the region women comprise even one quarter of Armed Forces. Gender mainstreaming, or gender ...


06 November 2019 | News

Roma housing situation: Better legalize than bulldoze!

Sarajevo – “I am pleased to announce that the new methodology we proposed for mapping of illegal settlements in which Roma live will be applied, as pilot projects, in two municipalities per each of the Western Balkans six (plus Turkey?) aiming to replicate it later across the region," said Orhan Usein, the Team Leader of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration ...


05 November 2019 | News

Low women employment and labour market skills mismatch in Western Balkans call for stronger cooperation

Istanbul – “The women unemployment in the Western Balkans is 60%. Analyses show a big mismatch in the labour market(s) between the demands and offered sets of skills and knowledge. Almost half of the students in the region enrol into the Humanities, Social Sciences and Business study programmes (49%) and only 24% of them choose Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) subjects, ...


30 October 2019 | News

Bregu: While waiting for EU plans for the region, we should focus on connectivity through regional cooperation and serious domestic reforms

Tirana – “Instead of having a focused discussion on Connectivity agenda and how much out of the 1 billion euro of the European Union’s (EU) grants from 2015 to 2020 was spent or how important connecting people and markets in the region is, etc. this October, this meeting included, the region is re-focused to its EU prospects and answering the “What comes next?” question”, ...


25 October 2019 | News

Number of cyberattacks targeting smartphones has increased by 50% in the first half of 2019

Tirana – The year 2020 will be devoted to further strengthening the capacities of the National Security Authorities (NSA) in industrial security and cyber security, as concluded at the meeting of Heads of NSA from South East Europe (SEENSA), held in Tirana on 24 October 2019.


23 October 2019 | News

RCC: Listen to Women - Meet Aida, an opera singer from Sarajevo who won the fight against breast cancer

Sarajevo – “They say what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. This is what happened to me, literally. I discovered the bump entirely by accident, by self-examination. Soon after that I went through tests, and the rest is history. Self-exam is important, but it is also important to visit your doctor, therefore, do not hesitate, book a doctor’s appointment today”, Aida Čorbadžić, ...


18 October 2019 | News

Bregu: Air pollution biggest environmental threat to health in WB – EU should consider this as ‘Fundamentals First’- air pollution knows no borders

Belgrade – „Six cities in the Western Balkans (WB) are among the top 20 cities with the highest air pollution in the world, and air pollution is the single biggest environmental threat to human health. Cancer and tumor, the most serious health concerns in the region, are linked with the air pollution. This speaks volumes on prioritising citizens’ health when considering ...


17 October 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans citizens need incentive from the EU

Sarajevo – “While awaiting the European Union’s Summit’s official decision on the opening accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia today, for us in the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and for the entire region as well, it is quite important to reiterate that Western Balkans is an integral part of the EU. The EU integration process needs always to ...


15 October 2019 | News

RCC: Western Balkans pay for undeclared work - with significant portion of public revenues, lack of fair competition and decent working conditions

Sarajevo – “Informal employment is work that is legal in itself but not declared to the authorities for tax, social security and/or labour law purposes. As such, it plays an important role in all Western Balkan economies, as widespread informality deprives governments of potential tax revenue, produces unfair competition and often affects workers’ rights and decent working conditions. ...


07 October 2019 | News

Bregu: Whenever there is a political will, things in the region move forward

Salzburg – “Keeping the regional cooperation alive is a task that is easier said than done. For example, we had a very good, successful, story in the digital component of the Regional Economic Area in the Western Balkans – Regional Roaming Agreement, which confirmed that whenever there is a political will, things in the region move forward. Unlike that, agreement on mobility of professionals ...


04 October 2019 | News

Bregu: There Is No Other Way to Build the Common European Future of the Region than the consolidation of Rule of Law - It’s All about Justice

Tirana – “Albania and Northern Macedonia are eagerly awaiting mid-October's decision on opening of the EU negotiations, which reflects on the entire region, as a necessity to maintain the reforms under way and take the next step in the European integration process. So, it is not a coincidence that this meeting is taking place in Tirana today, for the same reason the next justice ministerial ...


25 September 2019 | News

Bregu at SEECP meeting in New York: A free travel agreement - the new challenge for the region

New York/Sarajevo - “Two months ago in Poznan, we launched a challenge for the region: a free travel agreement - based on the spirit and the word of already existing set of bilateral agreements which allow free travel with ID cards. This regional agreement should be facilitated by RCC as an important sign of the regional ownership and by the same spirit of Multi-annual Action Plan on a ...


24 September 2019 | News

Bregu: It’s the right moment for Western Balkans to show its strengths and ownership on region’s EU future

New York/Sarajevo – “It’s beyond Poznan time, which makes it the right moment for the Western Balkans to show its strengths and ownership on the EU future of the region. We should address shortcomings of the Regional Economic Area and adjust it to fit our realities – include social dimension in its goals, ensure free movement of citizens across the region and act fast to reverse the ...


15 September 2019 | News

RCC: Listen to women – they are the key to unlocking the economic potential of this region

Sarajevo – Statistics show that more than 700.000 new jobs were created in the past 7 years in the Western Balkans, but only 4.3% of these were taken up by youth under 24 years of age. For a young person it takes about 2 years to get a job.


03 September 2019 | News

European Union will always be an unfinished business without the Western Balkans

Bled – „European Union will always be an unfinished business without the Western Balkans. The price for stagnation and postponing further the decision on the opening of accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia is, in short, a risk. The non opening would bread instability, immigration, unconstructive influence of other geopolitical actors. Any positive moment can precipitate ...


23 August 2019 | News

Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film 2019 goes to Nikola Stojanovic for “Sherbet”

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is delighted to confirm that the young director Nikola Stojanovic from Serbia with the movie “Sherbet” won the Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film, an award Powered by RCC since the inception of this competition category, at the official ceremony at 25th edition Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), held last night.


20 August 2019 | News

RCC championing young filmmakers at the Sarajevo Film Festival

Sarajevo – For the 3rd time in a row the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the patron of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the Best Student Film at the 25th Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF). We continue to support creative young filmmakers in pursuit of their own path and professional development, because YOUNG PEOPLE MATTER!  


09 July 2019 | News

SEECP leaders praise RCC, entrust it to pursue connectivity agenda of the region and prepare region’s strategy beyond 2020

Sarajevo – “By thanking Bosnia and Herzegovina for excellent cooperation in the past year of their Chairmanship-in-Office (C-i-O) of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP), their contribution in leading and advancing regional cooperation through the SEECP framework, I would like to congratulate the incoming C-i-O by Kosovo, looking forward to continue working together ...


08 July 2019 | News

Bregu: RCC keen to embark on any challenges with full support of regional and EU partners - we don’t need to loose time in order to find it again

Sarajevo – „A year behind us was a dynamic one and we are prepared to continue just as dynamic in the next one. We, at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) are ready and keen to embark on any challenges ahead of us but we cannot do it without the full support of our regional and European partners, as we don’t need to loose time in order to find it again”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary ...


07 July 2019 | News

RCC to Present Balkan Barometer 2019 at the Annual meeting of the organisation in Sarajevo

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the 5th, 2019 edition of its public and businesses viewpoints survey – Balkan Barometer (BB) at the Annual meeting of the organisation that is taking place on 8 July 2019 in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. 


05 July 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkan should embark on serious, wide-ranging facilitation agenda, including movement of people, goods, services and capital

  Poznan – “Two years after the Western Balkans’ (WB) Prime Ministers endorsed the Multi-annual Action Plan for the Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) in Trieste the region has not fully embraced the opportunities offered by the Regional Economic Area. Flows of goods, services, capital and people continue to be obstructed.  We all could draw an important lesson from the Regional ...


04 July 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans needs to fully embrace and capitalize on the Regional Economic Area

Poznan – “Two years since the endorsement of Multi-annual Action plan on Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) in Trieste and one year since London our region can show only a mixed track record at best. Western Balkans (WB) did not fully embrace Regional Economic Area (REA) and as a result vast potentials of regional economic integration remain untapped. There are many bilateral disputes ...


04 July 2019 | News

Bregu: Balkan Barometer 2019 clearly shows public and business appreciation of regional cooperation and need to strengthen it

Poznan – “There's no better way to stress the need for stepping up the regional cooperation than quoting the citizens and businesses of the Western Balkans (WB) who overwhelmingly, with 74% and 67% respectively, believe in regional cooperation. The recent success with dropping of roaming charges WB-wide as of 1 of July is an example of how regional cooperation is becoming a steady pattern ...


01 July 2019 | News

Roaming Prices Drastically Drop across Western Balkans: Speak more, surf more – pay less!

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is happy to announce that as of today, roaming prices across the entire Western Balkans (WB) have dropped drastically. Citizens of the WB will be able to speak, surf, SMS much more and pay much less. 


28 June 2019 | News

RCC’s #EU2U video/photo contest to take creative young people from South East Europe to Sarajevo Film Festival

Sarajevo -  #EU2U-EUrope in my eyes video/photo Contest that the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) launches today aims to encourage video/photo creativity of young people who would, through their video or photo creations, show what they like about European Union (EU) and Europe in general. 


18 June 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans can punch way above its weight if given a chance

London – “Share of the European Union (EU) in both Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and exports in the region is well over 70%. For all the talk about the growing Russian and Chinese economic clout in the Western Balkans six (WB6), only 3% of exports in 2018 went to Russia, and less than 0.6% to China”, said Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, ...


14 June 2019 | News

Economic growth goes hand in hand with human capital development – investment in education must increase

Luxemburg – “Years in a row our opinion survey Balkan Barometer shows that unemployment is the biggest concern for 67% of the citizens in the Western Balkans (WB), and our alarms should have already gone off, triggering adequate reactions. This region has talent everywhere but their skills have to be developed properly. The answer is in coordinated and coherent policies that will ...


13 June 2019 | News

Bregu: Progress achieved by Western Balkans’ EU aspirants now calls for the European Union’s concrete and fast action

Berlin – “It is not just about enlargement any longer but rather about unification of Europe because the European Union (EU) without Western Balkans (WB) is incomplete. This region is Unions geostrategic interest zone. On the other hand, coming from the region, I would like to see the Western Balkans taking strong ownership of the regional cooperation, so it would work and move together ...


10 June 2019 | News

RCC launches the next grant call: 750,000 EUR for developing tourism in the Western Balkans

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), under its Tourism Development and Promotion EU funded project, launched today the second in a row grant call for projects developing the tourism offer in the Western Balkans. While the grants scheme totals EUR 1.62 million, this second tranche is making available EUR 750,000 for the implementation of some 14 pilot projects worth up to EUR ...


08 June 2019 | News

Bregu: Integration into Regional Economic Area is a win-win for everyone

Bratislava – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, Majlinda Bregu, met with Minister of foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic, Miroslav Lajcak, in Bratislava today. The two officials discussed the upcoming Western Balkans’ Berlin Process Summit in Poznan in July, in particular the deliverables when it comes to the implementation of the Multiannual Action Plan for ...


08 June 2019 | News

Via Dinarica connectivity in the Accursed Mountain gets an upgrade

PEJE/PEČ  - Community Development Fund, beneficiary of the RCC implemented and EU funded tourism development grant scheme, organize today a FAM trip for tour operators and media to inaugurate 6 newly developed sections of Via Dinarica trail in Kosovo* connecting it with the trail portions in Albania and Montenegro.


07 June 2019 | News

Bregu: EU will never be complete without Western Balkans - let’s move from “geopoetics” to geopolitics

Bratislava – “The EU without the Western Balkans will never be complete. But it cannot assume that business as usual will provide stability in the Western Balkans. It should take a much more political and strategic approach in the region. Let’s move from “geopoetics” to geopolitics. The EU must be ready to realistically make the Western Balkans its geopolitical priority and ...


07 June 2019 | News

New circuit trail and tales of river log-driving enrich Via Dinarica

PODGORICA - A new attraction for hikers of Via Dinarica’s White Trail passing through Tara River Canyon in Montenegro was presented today in Podgorica. 


07 June 2019 | News

New regional hiking trail comes to life: Mokra Gora Mt., Beauty of the Balkans

ZUBIN POTOK - A brand new regional hiking trail running across Mokra Gora Mountain from Montenegro, across Kosovo* to Serbia was inaugurated today in Zubin Potok. The trail was developed by the Institute for Territorial Economic Development – InTER through an RCC implemented and EU funded tourism development grant scheme.


06 June 2019 | News

Powered by RCC, Accursed Mountains show their cultural edge

TIRANA – Stunningly beautiful nature of the Accursed Mountains settled between Albania, Kosovo* and Montenegro just got its cultural edge. From now on, colourful legends, verbal history, songs, dances, crafts and cuisine of local communities living in remote mountainous villages are going to be part of the hiking tours through this region.


05 June 2019 | News

The Tales of 4 Fortresses - Creative History Balkans Tour enriches regional tourism offer

NOVI SAD – With the summer at our door, the Western Balkans cultural tourism offers just got richer. EXIT Foundation, a beneficiary of the RCC implemented and EU funded tourism development grant scheme and a winner of the RCC’s champion of regional cooperation award, launched today in Novi Sad the Creative History Balkans Tour which takes visitors to four amazing fortresses in the region.


05 June 2019 | News

Legends of fortresses get new interpretation

DANILOVGRAD - Danilovgrad Municipality, through an RCC provided and EU funded tourism development grant, has revived three fortresses in three Western Balkans economies. 


05 June 2019 | News

Funds should be invested where it is most needed

The way regional budget programs are designed in their current financial systems, seem to be rigid and lack flexibility of intervention either to introduce a new product related directly to Roma budgeting, or to measure its efficiency. 


04 June 2019 | News

Turdiu: Mobility of students is essential for developing common European values, understanding and appreciation of each other’s’ cultures

Belgrade – Ministers in charge of education from the Western Balkan (WB) economies have welcomed the Declaration on Mutual Recognition of Academic Qualifications in the Western Balkans, at the  8th Ministerial  Meeting of the Western Balkans  Platform on Education  and Training organized by the European Commission in Belgrade, 3–4 June 2019 Belgrade, Serbia.


31 May 2019 | News

Monitoring of the SEE 2020 Strategy implementation ahead of its final year

Podgorica – Monitoring Committee of the South East Europe 2020 (SEE2020) Strategy, convened by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), met for the 8th time in Podgorica today to review the 1st Draft Annual Report on Implementation of the Strategy (ARI). 


30 May 2019 | News

New horseback riding route connects Western Balkans

Subotica – The latest Western Balkans tourism attraction – a 500 kilometres long horseback riding route running from Vojvodina in the north to Hercegovina in the south – was inaugurated today in Subotica. 


29 May 2019 | News

Kapetanovic: Cyber security one of the RCC’s top priorities

Ljubljana – “The issue of cyber security in general but also in the context of fight against terrorism and online radicalization has become a new security hot spot and challenge at national, regional and global level. This is why cyber security is one of the  priorities of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) both in terms of capacity building and from security point of view”, ...


27 May 2019 | News

Bregu: Investing in human capital paves the way towards economic development of the region

Istanbul – “Much needed sustainable transformation of the region into a knowledge-based economy with equal opportunities for all citizens is a comprehensive agenda. It combines innovation, research and development, education, employment and social inclusion policies. We cannot continue focusing on economic growth strategy without addressing the Human Capital Development”, said Majlinda Bregu, ...


24 May 2019 | News

RCC: Wrapping up Regional Investment Deliverables for Poznan Summit

Brussels – “Western Balkans (WB) is a welcoming environment for investments, with corporate profit tax rates ranging from 9% to 15%, being among the lowest in Europe and monetary and financial systems strongly dependent on euro. And yet, one of our the strongest assets is human resource base, given that over the last years more than 1.6 million of highly qualified people were added ...


22 May 2019 | News

Kapetanovic: Dislocation of youth from socio-economic trends makes them vulnerable to radicalization

Pristina – “The youth are extremely exposed group to various forms of emerging challenges in our region, as more than 20% of them between 16 and 25 years of age have no job, are not involved in training education, and 1 out of 2 want to leave their homeland not believing in betterment of their society”, said Amer Kapetanovic, Head of Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Political ...


18 May 2019 | News

Hidden Gems of Skopje Old Town surface up with new cool mobile app

Skopje - Starting today, visitors of the Skopje Old Town, Čaršija, will be able to experience it in a completely new way. Coming to their service is the mobile application – Skopje Gems - that provides seven guided cultural tours through Čaršija and takes visitors to the doorsteps of shops owners who keep traditional crafts and cuisine alive, as well as to museums and religious and ...


16 May 2019 | News

RCC Board meets: RCC stands ready to firmly push the integrative agenda and the European narrative forward

Sarajevo – “It is stock-taking time, to see what the RCC has been doing, both the accomplishments and the effects of the regional cooperation process on the people in the region, with many of the most pressing issues in the Western Balkans embedded in our work”, said Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu opening the 37th Board meeting ...


14 May 2019 | News

Futuristic World War II monuments making comeback as Balkan’s tourism attraction

SARAJEVO - Among the Western Balkans cultural tourism routes that the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Tourism Development and Promotion project is currently developing, is the so called Balkan Monumental Trail that encompasses region’s iconic World War II (WWII) monuments. 


13 May 2019 | News

Region works to implement “Speak more, pay less” principle the Western Balkans committed to

Brussels – “One month after the signing of the new Regional Roaming Agreement (RRA2) for the Western Balkans (WB) at the Digital Summit on 4 April 2019 in Belgrade, the focus is on steps needed to ensure its smooth, uniform and efficient implementation. WB citizens and all our partners are very keen to see positive results and we should make best efforts to succeed,” said Gazmend Turdiu, ...


10 May 2019 | News

The region has spoken – the hottest summer spots in South East Europe selected

Sarajevo – The time has come for the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) to announce the winners of its #looking4summer photo/video contest featuring summer beauties of the South East Europe (SEE), which were selected in a joined excercise of Instagram and Facebook users and the RCC crew. And here they are: 


09 May 2019 | News

Bregu: Divided we fall, united we stand

Sarajevo – “Western Balkan economies are united by need and a sense of emergency and awareness that there is a clear reason why regions come together in the world. Divided we cannot stand, because we are small economies, each one with its own problems. But all together we could be an interesting market. This is why we should be more focused on regional cooperation, as it is a very model ...


07 May 2019 | News

Cultural diversity connects Sarajevo, Kotor and Novi Sad

SARAJEVO - Sarajevo Meeting of Cultures (SMOC), beneficiary of the RCC implemented and EU funded Tourism Development and Promotion Grant Scheme, presented today in Sarajevo a new regional tourism route based on cultural diversity of the Western Balkans. 


29 April 2019 | News

Balkan Trafik! Festival: Promoting the best of the Western Balkans in the European Union

Brussels – For the past few days Brussels replaced its political foretoken as a European political centre and became a hub for Western Balkan art and culture. The 13th edition of Balkan Trafik! Festival (BTF), which took place 24-28 April, promoted the best of the Western Balkans (WB) and the South East Europe (SEE) in the European Union (EU) through a series of concerts, exhibitions, theatre ...


26 April 2019 | News

RCC’s ESAP: Share of informal employment in Western Balkans ranges from 18 to 33% - holistic approach necessary to tackle this issue

Sarajevo – “Share of informal/undeclared employment in the region varies from 18,1% in Republic of North Macedonia to 33% in Montenegro1 ,”said Nand Shani, Team Leader of the Regional Cooperation (RCC)’s Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP). Tackling this widespread phenomenon was the main topic of the workshops, organized throughout the Western Balkans by ESAP ...


26 April 2019 | News

RCC powers Balkan Trafik! Festival, promotes cultural tourism

SARAJEVO – 13th edition of the Balkan Trafik! Festival which promotes cultures of the South East Europe through theatre, literature, cinema, music, graphic arts, gastronomy, street art, and workshops is taking place in Brussels from 24 to 28 April 2019.


25 April 2019 | News

Tourism industry accounts for 14 percent of employment in the Western Balkans

Belgrade – Planning of most viable itineraries along the two new Western Balkans cultural routes that are currently under development was the main topic discussed by the representatives of tourism agencies and tour operators from the region, at the meeting organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s EU funded Tourism Development and Promotion Project, in Belgrade today.


24 April 2019 | News

Bregu: Exercising real elements of mutual interests and good relations day by day of utmost importance for presenting the other face of this region

Sarajevo – Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) took part in the coordination meeting of the Berlin Process focusing on the preparations for the July 2019 Western Balkans summit in Poznan, in Sarajevo today. 


23 April 2019 | News

Kapetanovic: We have to focus on tangible actions and results in countering & prevention of terrorism & violent extremism in the region

Tirana – The seventh meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Group of National Focal Points (NFP Group) for Prevention and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) in South East Europe (SEE) is held in Tirana today.


19 April 2019 | News

Bregu: Majority of online harassment of WOMEN happens on social media and we need to STOP it #DigitalRespect4Her

Sarajevo - The European Commission recently launched the #DigitalRespect4Her Campaign to raise awareness about online violence against women and promote good practices to tackle this issue.


19 April 2019 | News

RCC grant recipient introduces new regional cultural tourism product: The Illyricum Trail

BELGRADE - Danube Competence Center (DCC), beneficiary of the RCC Tourism Development and Promotion Project’s grant scheme, funded by the European Union, introduced yesterday in Belgrade the new and upcoming Western Balkans branch of the Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route’s called the Illyricum Trail.


18 April 2019 | News

RCC Bregu: Connecting within the region and with the EU of utmost importance for the Western Balkans

Zagreb – Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) paid an official visit to Zagreb today within the series of political consultations in the South East Europe (SEE). During the visit she met with Marija Burić Pejčinović, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, and Domagoj Ivan Milošević, Chairperson of the European Affairs ...


17 April 2019 | News

RCC at Sarajevo Business Forum: Better connectivity essential to creating new jobs and attracting investments in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo - Gazmend Turdiu, Deputy Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) moderated the Leaders Panel dedicated to the ‘One Region, One Economy’ concept as a vision for the future of Western Balkans, at the 10th edition of Sarajevo Business Forum (SFB) that kicked off in Sarajevo today. 


16 April 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans citizens believe civil society is key correctional factor, to hold governments accountable for their actions

Tirana – „The level of civic trust in governments and politics in general in the Western Balkans (WB) is alarming, as 60% of citizens do not trust neither the governments, parliaments nor the judicial systems, according to findings of new edition of the Balkan Barometer, based on the data from 2018”, said  Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), ...


12 April 2019 | News

Social media might become prime way of radicalization of young people in the years to come

Budva – Online radicalization in South East Europe (SEE) and ways to deal with this global phenomenon on the regional level are the main topics at the regional Workshop on prevention of online radicalization, being held in Budva today. 


10 April 2019 | News

RCC’s Amer Kapetanovic: Security cooperation in the region has enormous potential that needs to be up-scaled

Tirana –The South East European National Security Authorities’ (SEENSA) met in Tirana today, at the meeting co-organized and co-chaired by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the National security agency (NSA) of Albania. 


09 April 2019 | News

Bregu: If we want to move forward a new approach to education, promoting skills and supporting creativity is a must

Ulcinj – “If we want to move forward a new approach to education, promoting skills and supporting creativity is a must, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) addressing the participants of the 1st Forum “Science and Innovation 2030 for the Western Balkans”, organised by the Ministry of Science of Montenegro and Podgorica Club in Ulcinj today. 


09 April 2019 | News

Western Balkans agrees to create regional database of research infrastructure

Ulcinj – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) together with the Ministry of Science of Montenegro organised a Regional Workshop on Mapping Research Infrastructure, that took place on 8 April in Ulcinj. The workshop aimed to support the Western Balkan economies in the process of mapping the existing research infrastructure through exchange of practices and experiences. In addition, the ...


08 April 2019 | News

Marking the International Roma Day: Meet Roma and let them meet you!

Sarajevo/Belgrade – Today is the day we celebrate Romani culture, history, language, heritage and experiences. But it is also an opportunity to continue voicing the necessity of improving the lives and welfare of Roma as equal citizens of our societies, which is the mission of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Project Roma Integration 2020.


05 April 2019 | News

RCC’s Roma Integration 2020 project continues its work on improving the lives and welfare of Roma as equal citizens in EU Enlargement region

Belgrade – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu and Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister of Construction, Traffic and Infrastructure, Zorana Mihajlović, signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Belgrade today, extending Serbian hospitality to the second phase of the RCC’s Roma Integration 2020 project, which is seated in Belgrade. 


04 April 2019 | News

Region seals the deal – 2021 roaming free Western Balkans

Belgrade – “A deal is a destination! Today’s signature of the Roaming Free Agreement is a step that makes a difference in the region. Amid all scepticism let us say loudly: Europe delivers”, said Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) upon signing of the new Regional Roaming Agreement (RRA) at the second WB Digital Summit in Belgrade ...


01 April 2019 | News

RoamLike@Home in the Western Balkans: People see it as important as free movement; businesses believe it will spur trade

Sarajevo – The people of the Western Balkans (WB), businessman/woman, travellers, students, youngsters, everybody, are in unison when it comes to bringing down the roaming charges in the region – they are looking forward to it and see it as a great benefit to them personally and their businesses. The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) has asked people in all 6 region’s capitals what ...


26 March 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans Digital Summit and Poznan Summit are our chances to showcase we can deliver together as a region

Brussels – “Upcoming second WB Digital Summit in Belgrade, as well as the Poznan Summit are our chances to showcase that we can deliver together as a region,” said Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, at the meeting of the Multi-Annual Action Plan for Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) Coordinators from the six Western Balkan economies (WB6), in ...


22 March 2019 | News

Bregu: Western Balkans should be EU’s geopolitical priority, but WB must outdo itself to become quality EU integration partner

Sarajevo – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu took part in the informal meeting of the Working Party on the Western Balkans Region (COWEB) in Sarajevo today, convened by the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU), in cooperation with the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) Chairmanship-in-Office (CiO) held by ...


21 March 2019 | News

RCC Secretary General Bregu calls for more efficient future action and better communication with the citizens

Sarajevo – Coordination Board of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) South East Europe’s growth Strategy (SEE 2020) has met in Sarajevo today, to reflect on the implementation results, identify potential action synergies for further cooperation as well as post-2020 regional priorities and strategic framework. 


20 March 2019 | News

Turdiu: Our task is to translate political will and commitments into concrete actions and results

Tirana – The Western Balkan Six (WB6) Component Contact Points (CCPs) in charge for implementation and monitoring of the Multi-Annual Action Plan for Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) reflected on the results of MAP REA implementation during the period July-December 2018, at their third meeting, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Tirana yesterday.


15 March 2019 | News

Bregu: Challenges in front of us in enhancing regional cooperation in time of uncertainty, will be even bigger

Sarajevo – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, Majlinda Bregu, for the first time since the inception of the duty, chaired the meeting of the organisation’s Board at the RCC Secretariat offices in Sarajevo, yesterday. 


14 March 2019 | News

Bregu: Politics should act to the citizens’ concerns and deliver fast

Sarajevo – Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) paid an official visit to Milorad Dodik, Chairman of the Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency, in Sarajevo today.


13 March 2019 | News

Bregu: Spreading the spirit of solidarity and tolerance beyond borders teaches young generations what really matters

Sarajevo – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu presented the award of the Champion of Regional Cooperation for 2018 to the Founder and Chair of You are a Sunflower Foundation, Albana Osmani at the reception marking the 11th anniversary of the RCC in Sarajevo tonight. 


12 March 2019 | News

Western Balkans tourism on the rise: Powered by RCC, cultural and adventure tour operators promote the region at the ITB Berlin

Berlin – Over the last five days, 19 tour operators from the Western Balkans promoted the regional tourism offer at a joint Western Balkans – Powered by RCC.int stand at the world’s leading travel trade show, ITB Berlin, which gathers some 10,000 exhibitors and over 100,000 visitors.


12 March 2019 | News

Cooperation of Judiciaries in the Western Balkans leads to transparent, reliable and predictable Rule of Law practices for the citizens

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted today representatives of the Western Balkans’ Ministries of Justice gathered around the RCC-led Working Group on Justice, at their regular meeting, 12th in the row.


12 March 2019 | News

You are a sunflower - Champion of Regional Cooperation in South East Europe in 2018

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) has selected You are a sunflower as the Champion of Regional Cooperation in South East Europe in 2018. The award will be officially presented to Ms Albana Osmani, Head of You are a sunflower, by Majlinda Bregu, RCC Secretary General, at the ceremony marking the 11th anniversary of the RCC, in Sarajevo on 13 March 2019.


08 March 2019 | News

Listen to women – they are the key to unlocking the economic potential of this region

Sarajevo - Instead of happy 8th of March, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is introducing the idea of the “WE”, starting with Nada Markovic, a pioneer of the first female cooperative in Bosnia and Hercegovina. 


07 March 2019 | News

RCC Bregu: Cooperation in attracting investments, upskilling youth and women and connecting people priorities for the Western Balkans

Trieste – Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) visited the seat of the Western Balkans Six Chamber Investment Forum (WB6 CIF) in Trieste today, where she met with Safet Gerxhaliu, Secretary General, Marko Čadež, President of the Governing Board of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and representatives of Chambers of Investment from Western Balkan economies.


04 March 2019 | News

Powered by RCC: Western Balkans’ adventure tourism takes Utrecht fair

Utrecht – Over the last three days, ten tour operators from the Western Balkans presented the best of regional adventure tourism offer at the Fiets en Wandelbeurs fair at Jaarbeurs in Utrecht, Netherlands, within the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) EU-funded, Tourism Development and Promotion Project.


01 March 2019 | News

RCC’s Photo/video Contest ‘LOOKING FOR THE SUMMER’ in South East Europe starts today!

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) launches photo/video contest titled ‘LOOKING FOR THE SUMMER’ (#looking4summer) aimed at promoting the most desirable tourism destinations in South East Europe. 


28 February 2019 | News

Turdiu: Young diplomats are the leaders of tomorrow and promoters of our region to the EU and the world

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council, in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina, organized training for the region’s young diplomats from South East Europe, in Sarajevo today. 


22 February 2019 | News

RCC introduces new regional cultural and adventure tourism routes at the International Fair of Tourism in Belgrade

Belgrade – The RCC’s Tourism Development and Promotion Project introduced today the three new Western Balkans cultural routes and presented the development work done by the three tourism grants recipients at the largest international tourism fair in the South East European – IFT Belgrade.


22 February 2019 | News

RCC Bregu: We will keep pushing the region for concrete deliverables by Poznan summit

Podgorica – On the second day of her visit to Montenegro, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu met with the Speaker of the Parliament, Ivan Brajović, Prime Minister, Duško Marković,  Minister of Foreign Affairs  Srđan Darmanović,  and Minister of Economy, Dragica Sekulić.


21 February 2019 | News

RCC Bregu: Western Balkans is on the move, to step up reforms and strengthen regional cooperation

Podgorica - Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) started her consultations in Podgorica today by meeting Milo Đukanović, President of Montenegro.  


19 February 2019 | News

Preparations for the 2nd Western Balkans' Digital Summit enter its final stage

Belgrade – The preparations for the upcoming 2nd edition of the Western Balkans' Digital Summit entered its final stage. 


18 February 2019 | News

Once Western Balkans reach new roaming agreement among itself, EU ready for reduction of roaming tariffs between WB and EU, as of July 2019

Skopje – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu is in Skopje today, where she met with the EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel. 


08 February 2019 | News

‘Roam Like at Home’ speak more, pay less: Western Balkans agrees on text of new Regional Roaming Agreement

Brussels – Representatives of the ICT Ministries and Regulators from Western Balkans Six (WB6) economies agreed on the text and the next steps leading towards signing of the new Regional Roaming Agreement (RRA2), at the third negotiations organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Brussels today.


05 February 2019 | News

Bregu: Practical and effective discussion on the need for credible regional cooperation

Belgrade - Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu met with the Prime Minister of Serbia, Ana Brnabić, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ivica Dačić, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, Rasim Ljajić, and Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Veroljub Arsić.


04 February 2019 | News

Bregu: Mutual interests to lead the way on the Western Balkans’ European path

Belgrade – At the beginning of the two-day official visit to Belgrade, the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu met with the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, today. 


03 February 2019 | News

Bregu: 2019 is “a year of delivery” - citizens of the Western Balkans expect more

Tirana – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, was in an official visit to Tirana where she met with the President of Albania, Illir Meta, Minister of Finance and Economy, Anila Denaj, Minister of Education, Sport and Youth, Besa Shahini, Minister of Infrastructure and Energy, Belinda Balluku, and Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs Gent Cakaj. 


01 February 2019 | News

30 million EUR earmarked for Western Balkans in Broadband connectivity under Western Balkan Investment Framework (WBIF)

30 million EUR are earmarked for the investment projects in digital infrastructure (fixed broadband connectivity) for the Western Balkans, through the Western Balkan Investment Framework (WBIF).


31 January 2019 | News

Open Science concept would contribute to Western Balkan societies’ higher return on investment

Brussels – The Western Balkan (WB) economies presented current situation and actions undertaken in the development of Open Science and Open Access policies for research data at the meeting of the Working Group on Open Science, held under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Brussels, yesterday.


31 January 2019 | News

Domestic reforms and regional cooperation - the two preconditions for economic development of the region

Brussels – Sustainable economic growth and development of the Western Balkans (WB) was in the focus of gathering of representatives of EU institutions, diplomatic missions, think tanks, non-governmental and business organizations, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in cooperation with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung’s (FES) EU Office, at the RCC Liaison Office in Brussels ...


29 January 2019 | News

RCC SG Bregu: European integration of Western Balkans is not a territorial, but transformational agenda

Vienna – “European integration of Western Balkans is not a territorial agenda. It is a transformational agenda, which in the broader orientation towards fundamental European values has worked. The EU has been the single most important leverage in the region to promote democracy, rule of law, respect for human rights and minorities. EU’s enlargement policy has for fact delivered in shaping ...


24 January 2019 | News

RCC: ‘Roam Like at Home’ speak more, pay less

Brussels – The second round of negotiations on the new Regional Roaming Agreement (RRA2) for the Western Balkans (WB), organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), is being held in Brussels today. 


22 January 2019 | News

RCC’s Majlinda Bregu: Skopje gives a tailwind for the entire region

Skopje – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, was in an official visit to Skopje in the past two days where she met with the President of the Assembly, Talat Dzaferi; Prime Minister, Zoran Zaev; Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for European Affairs, Bujar Osmani; Deputy Prime Minister responsible for economic affairs and coordination with the ...


21 January 2019 | News

RCC Secretary General: Each negotiation is a story of impact and dialogue for individuals, communities and economies

 The 2nd round of negotiations on mutual recognition of professional qualifications in the Western Balkans (WB) for Doctors of Medicine, Dentists, Architects and Civil Engineers started in Skopje today. 


18 January 2019 | News

Secretary General Bregu: Inter-connected, we will push each other forward

Pristina – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Majlinda Bregu, visited Pristina today and met with the Speaker of the Parliament Kadri Veseli, Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Behgjet Pacolli, and Minister of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Besim Beqaj. 


18 January 2019 | News

On-the-job-training programme important for strengthening the Western Balkans labour market outcomes

Western Balkans’ Public Employment Services and Labour Ministries peers review on-the-job training programmes and practices Tirana – Representatives of Public Employment Services (PES) and Ministries of Labour from the Western Balkans economies gathered in Tirana for a 2-day regional workshop to review on-the-job training programmes. The Workshop was organised by the Employment ...


09 January 2019 | News

RCC Secretary General Majlinda Bregu pays the first official visit to Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo – Majlinda Bregu, the new Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), met with Sefik Dzaferovic, one of the three members of Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in Sarajevo today. This is the first meeting organised of envisaged tour of visits that RCC Secretary General will have with leadership of the South East Europe participants.


04 January 2019 | News

Statement of the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council Majlinda Bregu

 Beyond differences and geographical boundaries there lies a common interest!  Jean Monnet was firm in his conviction that the “European nations had to unite in order to survive”. The same holds true for Western Balkan’s. To maintain weight in a world that is changing fast, we need to leverage our relations. Cooperation is the crux of the matter. 


04 January 2019 | News

Majlinda Bregu takes office as the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council

Sarajevo – Mrs. Majlinda Bregu assumed her duties of the new Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) today, following the appointment by the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) Foreign Ministers in Brdo pri Kranju, Slovenia on 23 April 2018.


21 December 2018 | News

Western Balkan Six kick-off negotiations on mutual recognition of professional qualifications

Podgorica - The Western Balkan Six (WB6) kicked-off negotiations on an Agreement, which will enable common and shorter procedures for recognition of professional qualifications for Doctors of Medicine, Dentists, Architects and Civil Engineers. The appointed negotiations teams from the WB6 economies discussed the Draft Agreement on Recognition of Professional Qualifications for Doctors ...


19 December 2018 | News

SEE 2020 Strategy’s Monitoring Committee kicks off new Strategy’s monitoring cycle

Vienna - 7the meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) South East Europe 2020 (SEE 2020) Strategy’s Monitoring Committee took place in Vienna today marking the beginning of the new SEE 2020 monitoring cycle. 


13 December 2018 | News

Western Balkans moving towards a roaming free region

Brussels – Representatives of the economies from the Western Balkans (WB) gathered in Brussels today to discuss on the new Regional Roaming Agreement (RRA), at the meeting of the Western Balkans Roaming Policy organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC). 


13 December 2018 | News

Preparations for the next WB6 Prime Ministers Summit continue at the 4th Meeting of Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications in the Western Balkans

Sarajevo - The 4th meeting of the Joint Education Reform Initiative of South Eastern Europe (ERI SEE) and Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications (WG RAQ) took place in Sarajevo today. 


11 December 2018 | News

3rd Meeting of the Western Balkans 6 Working Group on Capital/Financial Markets

Podgorica - The third meeting of the Western Balkans Six 6 (WB6) Working Group on Capital/Financial Markets, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), took place in Podgorica today, deliberating on the possibilities of advancing this work towards the overall financial markets development and discussing possible deliverables for the next Summit of the WB6 Prime Ministers in ...


10 December 2018 | News

More jobs and changed approach to employment of Roma community in the enlargement region necessary to combat poverty and social dependence

Budapest - Regional conference on innovative approaches to employment of Roma, jointly organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s projects Roma Integration 2020 and Employment and Social Affairs Platform (EASP), and Roma Education Fund (REF) started in Budapest today. 


06 December 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Cyber security became new hotspot and serious challenge at global, regional and local level

Istanbul – The Third Regional Coordination Conference for Counter-Terrorism (CT) and Prevention and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) in South East Europe (SEE), organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in cooperation with the Government and the Ministry of Interior of Turkey, together with Integrative Internal Security Governance Initiative (IISG), opened in Istanbul, Turkey, ...


06 December 2018 | News

Western Balkans endorses development of joint tourism routes

VIENNA – The South East Europe Tourism Expert Group (TEG) endorsed a joint plan establishing the regional cultural and adventure tourism routes for the Western Balkans six, at the meeting held in Vienna today. 


04 December 2018 | News

Enlargement process, integration, transformation challenges - main topics of 19th edition of EU-Western Balkans Summit in Brussels

Brussels – For the third year in a row the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) partnered with the Brussels-based think-tank Friends of Europe (FoE), with the support of the European Commission, Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United States European Command, in organizing the annual EU-Western Balkans Summit. This year’s 19th edition of the ...


27 November 2018 | News

Meeting on Cybersecurity and CSIRTs Cooperation in Western Balkans: Cybersecurity a necessity of modern societies

Limassol - Western Balkans’ Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) met in Limassol, Cyprus today, within International Telecommunication Union's (ITU) Cyber Drill - ALERT (Applied Learning for Emergency Response Teams) for Europe Region that is taking place to from 26-30 November 2018. The meeting was co-organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), ITU and The Geneva Centre ...


27 November 2018 | News

RCC ESAP: Internship Programmes in focus of Regional Peer Review Workshop in Skopje

Skopje – A two-day a regional peer review workshop focusing on internship programmes ended in Skopje today. The Workshop was organised by the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) project. 


21 November 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Western Balkans should work on preserving its environment and address climate change, regardless of its EU accession process

Skopje – Western Balkans ministers in charge of the environment called for further strengthening of synergies and regional cooperation for the implementation of the environment and climate change priorities in the region, in line with the EU acquis, as well as supported mainstreaming of environment, climate and sustainable development objectives in all policy areas, enhancing cross-sector ...


15 November 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Region’s economies need to improve legislation on capital markets, focusing on protection of investors

Belgrade – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted the panel: The Future of Regional Capital Markets as a partner of the 17th Conference of the Belgrade Stock Exchange ‘Upgrade in Belgrade 2018’ being held in Belgrade today.  


14 November 2018 | News

RCC’s tourism project develops regional umbrella identity: Western Balkans - Crossroads of Civilisations

Podgorica - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Tourism Development and Promotion Project prepared and presented the new joint regional umbrella identity concept dubbed “Western Balkans - Crossroads of Civilisations”, at the WB  Tourism Focus Group meeting held today in Podgorica.


14 November 2018 | News

RCC organizes training of teams for negotiations on mutual recognition of professional qualifications in the Western Balkans

Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) concluded a two-day training session for the negotiations teams who will conduct the negotiations on the Agreement on the Mutual Recognition of Professional Qualifications of Doctors of Medicine, Dentists, Architects and Civil Engineers between the 6 Western Balkan economies (WB6) in Tirana today. The training was the first step in the ...


09 November 2018 | News

548.000 EUR worth grants awarded for improvement of Western Balkans cultural and adventure tourism

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s EU-funded Tourism Development and Promotion Project has awarded the first twelve, out of 30 + grants in total value of EUR 548,000, in Sarajevo today. These grants are awarded to the best project proposals received through the public call for proposals looking for ideas intended to improve a joint Western Balkans cultural and adventure ...


08 November 2018 | News

RCC to award first twelve grants for Western Balkans tourism development and promotion

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will award the first twelve grants in total worth of EUR 550,000 for the development and promotion of tourism in the Six Western Balkans economies, at a ceremony in Sarajevo tomorrow. 


07 November 2018 | News

Region’s Military Intelligence Chiefs discuss cyber security challenges in the Western Balkans

Tirana – The South East European Military Intelligence Chiefs (SEEMIC) adopted the Open-source intelligence (OSINT) assessment dedicated to ‘Challenges to critical infrastructure cyber security in South East Europe ' at their 10th Conference held on 7 November 2018 in Tirana, Albania. The event was co-organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Defence Intelligence and ...


06 November 2018 | News

Western Balkans continues regional discussions to decrease roaming prices

Brussels – Representatives of the Western Balkans (WB) economies started the discussions for the adoption of the new Regional Roaming Agreement aimed at reducing the roaming prices for the benefits of all Western Balkan consumers, covering calls, SMS and data traffic for the entire region. 


31 October 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Romani women are the most vulnerable group and region desperately needs to ensure their economic independence

Belgrade – The regional conference on economic situation of Romani women in the European Union enlargement region, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) in cooperation with the Government of Serbia and CARE International Balkans, has started in Belgrade today.  


30 October 2018 | News

Western Balkans agree to step up the work on research infrastructure

Sarajevo – Six Western Balkan (WB6) economies agreed to step up their work on research infrastructure in the region. Specifically the WB6 agreed to develop policies to open access to the existing research infrastructures (RIs) for researchers from the region, to cooperate in development of national RI Roadmaps as a basis for a regional map of RIs, and to kick off joint work on ...


29 October 2018 | News

RCC ESAP: Supporting exchange of experience on development and implementation of sector budget support

Skopje – Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) project of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) supported the visit of the Albanian delegation from the Ministry of Economy and Finance to Skopje today.


25 October 2018 | News

RCC hosts workshop for Western Balkans journalists on media coverage of terrorism and violent extremism topics

Budva - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosts a Regional Workshop on media coverage of violent extremism-related topics for journalists from the Western Balkans, in Budva, Montenegro, today. 


22 October 2018 | News

Western Balkans promotes its adventure tourism offer at Adventure Travel World Summit – Powered by RCC.int

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Tourism Development and Promotion Project took the tour operators from the six Western Balkans economies to the annual Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS), which was held in Montecatini, Italy  last week, to promote their offers and products. The ATWS is the single largest adventure travel gathering that enables business-to-business ...


19 October 2018 | News

RCC organises regional workshop for journalists from the Western Balkans on media coverage of terrorism and violent extremism topics

Budva - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is organising a Regional Workshop on media coverage of violent extremism-related topics for journalists from the Western Balkans, on 25 October 2018, in Budva, Montenegro. 


18 October 2018 | News

RCC Board meets for the 35th time

Sarajevo – The Board of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) met for the 35th time at the organisations’ Secretariat in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina today. 


09 October 2018 | News

RCC hosts the third meeting of MAP REA Coordinators from Western Balkan Six

Brussels – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted the 3rd meeting of Coordinators of Multi-Annual Action Plan (MAP) on Regional Economic Area (REA) in Western Balkan Six (WB6), discussing the implementation results, next milestones, the most pressing challenges and reiterating commitments, in Brussels today. 


03 October 2018 | News

Second National Platform on Roma Integration held in Skopje

Skopje – The second national platform on Roma Integration, gathering representatives of the government, civil society organizations, the Delegation of the European Union and relevant international organisations, to assess the Roma integration policy achievements made in 2017 and agree on priorities for 2018, met in Skopje today.


03 October 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Trained security practitioners are invaluable in prevention and countering of violent extremism and radicalization in Western Balkans

Skopje - A seminar on prevention and countering of violent extremism (P/CVE) in the Western Balkans (WB) gathering security practitioners from the region and distinguished regional and international lecturers is being held in Skopje today. The seminar has been organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior of The Former Yugoslav Republic of ...


28 September 2018 | News

Third National Platform on Roma Integration in Bosnia and Herzegovina held in Sarajevo

Sarajevo – The third National Platform on Roma Integration in Bosnia and Herzegovina, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 in cooperation with the Ministry for Human Rights and Refugees of Bosnia and Herzegovina, was held in Sarajevo today. It gathered relevant officials from all levels of governance in charge of Roma integration and representatives ...


25 September 2018 | News

Svilanovic: This might be ‘a make or break’ year for Regional Economic Area in the Western Balkans

New York – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted a working breakfast of the Western Balkans Foreign Ministers and the Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, in New York today. This informal gathering was organised in the framework of the forthcoming Session of the United Nations’ (UN) General Assembly. 


21 September 2018 | News

Pristina hosts third National Platform on Roma Integration

Pristina - Under the framework of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020), the third National Platform on Roma Integration in Kosovo*, jointly organized by the RI2020 Action Team and the Office of the Prime Minister was held in Pristina today.


18 September 2018 | News

Sarajevo: Students from BiH universities discuss early signs of radicalisation among youth and its prevention

Sarajevo – Close to 50 students from various Universities across Bosnia and Herzegovina gathered in BiH capital today at the one-day Workshop, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) at Faculty for Criminalistics, Criminology and Security Studies of University of Sarajevo,  to discuss the early signs of radicalisation in their local communities, vulnerable targeted population, ...


23 August 2018 | News

RCC supports Western Balkans tour of No Borders Orchestra

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) supported the Western Balkans tour of the No Borders Orchestra (NBO) that ended last night with a concert in Belgrade after earlier performances in Budva, Prizren and Sarajevo.


17 August 2018 | News

Film „Last call“ directed by Hajni Kis winner of the Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film at 2018 Sarajevo Film Festival

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is proud to confirm that the young director Hajni Kis with her film „Last call” won the Heart of Sarajevo for the Best Student Film, under RCC's patronage, at the 24th edition Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF) that is to close tonight. 


09 August 2018 | News

RCC continues fuelling regional cooperation in the field of youth creativity and tourism

Sarajevo – For the second year in a row, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the international partner of the Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), as a patron of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the Best Student Film. The festival kicks-off tomorrow, 10 August 2018, and includes filmmakers from 12 South East European economies, which is an impressive regional representation. 


17 July 2018 | News

Horizon Europe should contribute to closing research & innovation EU-Western Balkans gaps

Western Balkan Six propose recommendations ahead of the adoption of the EC’s research and innovation Horizon Europe programme Sarajevo - Following the conclusions of the meeting of the Western Balkans Working Group on Research and Development (R&D) that took place in Brussels on 13 June 2018, the ministries responsible for science of the Western Balkan Six, prepared and issued ...


15 July 2018 | News

RCC launches tourism development grant scheme; 1.62 million euro made available

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat launched today 1.62-million-euros worth grant scheme that will be utilised to improve infrastructure and quality of services along regional cultural and adventure tourism routes. 


11 July 2018 | News

RCC Secretary General takes part at the Western Balkans London Summit

  The Secretary General of the regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Goran Svilanovic, took part at the Western Balkans (WB) Summit on 10 July in London.


06 July 2018 | News

RCC’s Balkan Barometer 2018: Satisfaction of people and businesses on overall situation in the region is steadily improving

Brussels – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) revealed results of 2018 edition of the Balkan Barometer (BB), an annual survey of citizens and business communities’ opinion on the situation in the region, in Brussels today. The main findings of the survey show that satisfaction of people and businesses on the overall situation in the region, while still below average, is steadily improving.


05 July 2018 | News

Major milestone in SEE 2020 Strategy implementation: Western Balkans ADDS more than 600 000 JOBS

Brussels – Governing Board of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) South East Europe 2020 Strategy (SEE 2020) endorsed the 2018 Annual Report on Strategy’s implementation (ARI), at its fifth meeting held in Brussels today, in the eve of the presentation of the RCC’s Balkan barometer 2018. 


04 July 2018 | News

Svilanovic: Notable progress achieved in the implementation of Multi-Annual Action Plan on Regional Economic Area in the Western Balkans

Vienna – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Goran Svilanovic presented key results of the implementation of Multi-Annual Action Plan on Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) at the ministerial panel dedicated to this topic of the Economy Ministers’ Meeting of the London Western Balkans Summit held in Vienna today.  


03 July 2018 | News

Second Meeting of the Working Group for Developing Regional Standards for Roma Responsible Budgeting

Bucharest – The second meeting of the Working Group for Developing Regional Standards for Roma Responsible Budgeting, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020), took place in Bucharest today. 


03 July 2018 | News

RCC to present SEE2020 strategy implementation results and its Balkan Barometer 2018 this week in Brussels

Brussels – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present the implementation results of the region’s growth strategy, South East Europe 2020 (SEE2020) on 5 July 2018 in Brussels, and day after, on 6 July also in Brussels, the RCC will reveal the results of its 4th edition of the public and business opinion survey – Balkan Barometer 2018. Both are an integral part of the RCC’s ...


02 July 2018 | News

Genoveva Ruiz Calavera: The RCC instrumental in facilitating co-operation bringing the Western Balkans closer to one another and to the EU

Sarajevo – Genoveva Ruiz Calavera, Director for the Western Balkans at the European Commission’s (EC) Directorate-General for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) visited the offices of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Secretariat in Sarajevo today, as a part of her Western Balkans tour.  


28 June 2018 | News

New RCC project to focus on development of cultural and adventure tourism in the Western Balkans

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) officially marked the beginning of its 3-year project dedicated to the development and promotion of tourism in the Western Balkans, in Sarajevo today. The project will help six Western Balkans economies to diversify and consolidate their cultural and adventure tourism products, build and promote a joint offer, which would be competitive ...


27 June 2018 | News

RCC’s Tourism Expert Group adopts “Crossroad of Civilisations” as a regional tourism identity, agrees on tourism routes to be developed

Sarajevo – The South East Europe Tourism Expert Group (TEG) adopted “Crossroads of Civilisations” as a regional tourism identity that will be applied throughout all the routes development efforts in the framework of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Tourism Development and Promotion project, at its 7th meeting held on 27 June 2018 on Jahorina Mountain near Sarajevo. The RCC’s ...


27 June 2018 | News

Regional Cooperation Council to launch Tourism Development and Promotion project for Western Balkans

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will launch its project on Tourism Development and Promotion in the Western Balkans on 28 June 2018, in Sarajevo, presenting its team, planned activities and expected results.  


26 June 2018 | News

Western Balkans endorses key principles on recognition of academic qualifications

Brussels – Ministers in charge of education from the Western Balkan economies endorsed a set of key principles on automatic recognition of academic qualifications in the region at the 7th Ministerial meeting of the Western Balkans Platforms on Education and Training & Research and Innovation, organised by the European Commission (EC), in Brussels today. These principles build upon the ...


26 June 2018 | News

Usein: Data collection system to be improved for assessment of progress in integration of Roma

Belgrade – National Platform on Roma integration in Serbia, providing wide public dialogue with the relevant institutions and civil society and others concerned with the issue of Roma integration, at the same time ensuring transparency of the Roma related policy, participation in decision making and accountability of the implementing institutions towards the public, met in Belgrade today. 


25 June 2018 | News

Digital Agenda for the Western Balkans Launched in Sofia

Sofia – Digital Agenda for the Western Balkans (WB) was launched in Sofia today, at the Digital Assembly 2018, a key annual policy event organised by the European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology, and the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU), that gathers more than 1,000 stakeholders and policymakers to debate EU ...


20 June 2018 | News

Brussels: RCC's ESAP presents Western Balkans employment and labour market trends and developments

Brussels – Regional Cooperation Council' s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) Project presented in Brussels today employment and labour market trends and developments in the Western Balkans (WB). The policy discussion gathered representatives of WB Ministries of Labour and Public Employment Services (PES), European Commission’s Directorates-General for Employment, Social ...


19 June 2018 | News

RCC’s Employment and Social Affairs Platform Project: Joint actions to enhance performance and promote mutual learning among Western Balkans Ministries of Labour and Public Employment Services agreed

Brussels - Representatives of the Western Balkans (WB) Ministries of Labour and Public Employment Services (PES) met in Brussels today, within the framework of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform Project (ESAP), to discuss main trends and challenges in employment and labour markets in the region, as well as key outcomes of regional cooperation ...


14 June 2018 | News

Initial steps towards mutual recognition of Academic Qualifications in Western Balkans made by Joint Regional Working Group

Brussels – Joint Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications (WG RAQ) has initiated steps towards recognition exercise for the Western Balkans (WB) as well as an online system to support fast-track recognition between Western Balkans economies, at its 3rd meeting held in Brussels today under auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) & Education Reform Initiative ...


13 June 2018 | News

RCC: Western Balkans Working Group on Research and Development meets in Brussels

Brussels – The meeting of the Western Balkans Working Group on Research and Development (R&D) took place in Brussels on 13 June 2018. The participants focused on the possible participation of the Western Balkans in the Horizon Europe, which is the EC's proposal for a € 100 billion research and innovation funding programme for seven years period (2021-2027). This programme is ...


12 June 2018 | News

RCC hosts regional meeting on coordination and harmonization of spectrum policies in the Western Balkans

Prague - Coordination and harmonisation of spectrum policies in the Western Balkans (WB) was discussed at the regional meeting organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) that took place in Prague, Chez Republic today.


12 June 2018 | News

RCC Secretary General and BiH Foreign Minister meet to discuss BiH's SEECP C-i-O

Banja Luka – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Goran Svilanovic, met the Foreign Minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Igor Crnadak, in Banja Luka today.


11 June 2018 | News

Participation of public in policy-making allows for citizens’ views and concerns to be addressed

Vienna – In an attempt to increase awareness of regional standards in the field of public participation in policy-making processes in the Western Balkans (WB), the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) together with the Regional School of Public Administration (ReSPA), and the Centre for Public Administration Research (KDZ) organised a Regional Conference titled ‘Unlocking Benefits of Public ...


11 June 2018 | News

Second National Platform Meeting on Roma Integration in Albania held in Tirana

Tirana - The second National Platform Meeting on Roma Integration, aimed at reviewing the status of implementation of National Action Plan for Integration of Roma and Egyptians in Albania for the period from 2016 to 2020, took place in Tirana today. The meeting was organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Roma Integration 2020 (RI 2020) Action Team, in close cooperation with ...


08 June 2018 | News

RCC’s ESAP Project and Western Balkans’ Public Employment Services invited to present their joint work at Annual Meeting of the EU PES Network

Sofia – Western Balkan’s Public Employment Services (PES) gathered around Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) Project were, for the first time ever, invited to participate as observers in a 9th Annual Meeting of the European Union’s  (EU) PES Network, that took place in Sofia, Bulgaria 7-8 June 2018.


08 June 2018 | News

Western Balkans' Judicial Training Institutions and Working Group on Justice meet in Podgorica

Podgorica - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) convened meeting of the Western Balkan Judicial Training Institutions (WB JTIs), Councils for Judiciary and Working Group on Justice (WGJ), held on 7-8 June 2018 in Podgorica, Montenegro.


06 June 2018 | News

RCC publishes Study on Climate Change in the Western Balkans: Alarming increase of temperature over the whole territory

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) published a Study on climate change in the Western Balkans, showing alarming increase of temperature over the whole territory, with observed temperature increase of 1.2ºC in the near future, destined to warm further by 1.7 – 4.0°C and even exceeding 5.0°C by the end of the century, depending on the global effort in greenhouse gasses ...


31 May 2018 | News

Usein: Housing remains the most challenging issue for Roma integration in the region

Bar – A two day conference “Holistic Approach to Housing for Roma in the Enlargement Region”, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) Action Team, started in Bar today. 


30 May 2018 | News

Third National Platform meeting on Roma Integration in Montenegro held in Podgorica

Podgorica – The third National Platform meeting on Roma Integration in Montenegro for 2018, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) Action Team in close cooperation with the Ministry of Human and Minority Rights of Montenegro, took place on 30 May in Podgorica. 


30 May 2018 | News

Climate Change Discussed at the meeting of the Regional Working Group on Environment

Skopje - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning hosted the 7th meeting of the Regional Working Group on Environment (RWG Env) in Skopje, today.  


30 May 2018 | News

Combating terrorism and violent extremism cannot be done without full support of judicial institutions

 Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Albanian Ministry of Justice are hosting a regional workshop on law enforcement/judicial services and state attorneys/prosecutors in dealing with terrorism and violent extremism and connected crimes, in Tirana today. It gathers judges, prosecutors and experts from the Western Balkans, guests from the international organisations and ...


18 May 2018 | News

RCC Presents Preliminary Findings of the SEE 2020 Draft Annual Implementation Report to Monitoring Committee

Podgorica - Monitoring Committee of the South East Europe 2020 (SEE 2020) Strategy met for the 6th time, under auspice of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in Podgorica today, to discuss and provide comments on the Strategy’s early draft Annual Implementation Report (ARI).


17 May 2018 | News

RCC at the Sofia Western Balkans Summit: Regional Cooperation Council proliferated regional cooperation across all sectors

Sofia – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, Goran Svilanovic, took part at the EU-Western Balkans Summit hosted by the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU, in Sofia today. The Summit is dedicated to strengthen links between the EU and the Western Balkans in infrastructure, digital and human connectivity. It brought together EU and WB leaders, as well as ...


15 May 2018 | News

RCC presents draft MAP REA Implementation Monitoring Report

Tirana - Component Contact Points (CCPs) of the Multiannual Action Plan for the Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) for the Western Balkans Six (WB6) met for the second time at the meeting convened by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in Tirana today, to discuss monitoring results and reporting on MAP REA implementation.


11 May 2018 | News

Regional Investment Reform Agenda (RIRA) Endorsed at the SEEIC Ministerial Meeting

Tivat - The Regional Investment Reform Agenda (RIRA) was endorsed by representatives of the six Western Balkan (WB6) economies at the Ministerial meeting of the South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) held in Tivat, Montenegro today. 


07 May 2018 | News

Western Balkans confirms Recommendation to open negotiations on Mutual Recognition of Professional Qualifications

Sarajevo – Representatives of six Western Balkan economies gathered in the Joint Working Group on Mutual Recognition of Professional Qualifications (JWG on MRPQ) at their meeting held in the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) headquarters in Sarajevo today confirmed recommendation to open negotiations on mutual recognition agreement of professional qualifications. 


27 April 2018 | News

Preparations for Sofia and London Summits Continue: RCC's SEEIC reviews Regional Investment Reform Agenda

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) South East European Investment Committee (SEEIC)  met at the plenary session in RCC premises today, back-to-back with Sarajevo Business Forum. 


25 April 2018 | News

Brussels: Bulgarian EU Presidency, RCC host conference on the Western Balkans’ European perspective

Brussels - Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union together with the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted a conference on the Western Balkans’ European perspective through growth, good governance and enhanced cooperation, in Brussels today.


24 April 2018 | News

SEECP Summit Participants praise work of RCC, thank outgoing and approve new Secretary General

Brdo pri Kranju – The leaders of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) participants commended and congratulated the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), for serving as a sui generis organisation promoting regional cooperation in South East Europe, approving at the same time the appointment by the SEECP Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Majlinda Bregu as Secretary General ...


23 April 2018 | News

South East European Foreign Ministers Appoint next RCC Secretary General

Brdo pri Kranju - Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) appointed Majlinda Bregu as Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), starting on 1 January 2019 and of Igor Luksic as RCC Secretary General starting on January 2022, at their meeting held in Brdo pri Kranju, Slovenia, today. In this post, Bregu will succeed Goran ...


23 April 2018 | News

RCC Annual Meeting endorses nomination of Majlinda Bregu as the next RCC Secretary General for the term 2019-2021

Brdo pri Kranju – The 10th Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), held in Brdo pri Kranju today, endorsed the RCC Annual Report 2017/2018 and the nominations of Majlinda Bregu as the next RCC Secretary General for the term 2019-2021 and Igor Luksic for the term 2022-2024.


20 April 2018 | News

ESAP: Regional Workshop on Employment of Persons with Disabilities in the Western Balkans

Belgrade – The Regional Workshop on Employment of Persons with Disabilities (PWD) in the Western Balkans (WB), which was held in Belgrade on 19-20 April 2018, was organised jointly in the framework of two regional projects: Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) and Promoting Inclusive Labour Market Solutions in the Western Balkans.


19 April 2018 | News

Skopje: The first Western Balkans Digital Summit finishes

Skopje – The first ever, two-day Western Balkans Digital Summit finished in Skopje today. It brought together close to 800 participants, 50 companies and more than 50 speakers, including Prime Ministers and Ministers responsible for digital agenda from the Western Balkans (WB), EU Berlin Process participants, representatives of European Commission (EC), Regional Cooperation Council ...


18 April 2018 | News

The first Western Balkans Digital Summit opens in Skopje

Skopje – The first ever Western Balkans Digital Summit, bringing together Prime Ministers and Ministers responsible for digital agenda from the Western Balkans (WB), EU Berlin Process participants, European Commission (EC), Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), representatives of IT industries and businesses, academia, and youth, opened in Skopje today. 


18 April 2018 | News

Cyber Security: Regional Expert Conference and Workshop on Countering Online Radicalisation

Belgrade - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) organised a two-day regional Conference and Workshop tackling countering online radicalisation in the context of cyber security in Belgrade on 17-18 April 2018.


17 April 2018 | News

RCC, RAI sign memorandum of understanding, broadening cooperation between the two organisations

Belgrade – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Goran Svilanovic and Chairperson of the Regional Anticorruption Initiative (RAI) Davor Dubravica signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on mutual cooperation between the RCC and RAI, on the margins of the RCC-organised Conference 'Countering online radicalization in the context of cyber security', in Belgrade on ...


16 April 2018 | News

Regional Investment Reform Agenda in focus of the RCC-organized meeting

Vienna – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Joint Working Group on Investments (JWGI) of the South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) and Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA), discussed Regional Investment Reform Agenda (RIRA), at the meeting held in Vienna today. 


12 April 2018 | News

RCC with EC Organize Workshop on Smart Specialisation in the Western Balkans

Ljubljana - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Directorate-General Joint Research Centre (DG JRC) of the European Commission co-organised a joint Workshop on Governance of Smart Specialisation (S3) and Training on Entrepreneurial Discovery Process (EDP) in the Western Balkans, which was held at Technology Park in Ljubljana on 11-12 April 2018.


12 April 2018 | News

ESAP: Self-employment programmes in the Western Balkans discussed in Pristina

Prishtina – Representatives of Ministries of Labour and Public Employment Services (PES) from the Western Balkans discussed self-employment programmes at a two-day regional workshop within the framework of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) project, held in Prishtina on 11-12 April 2018.


08 April 2018 | News

RCC and its RI2020 congratulate the International Roma Day

Sarajevo, Belgrade – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its Roma Integration 2020 Action Team congratulate the International Roma Day, being marked today . 


05 April 2018 | News

Western Balkans Roaming Policy Actions Discussed at the Meeting in Brussels

Brussels - Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) together with the European Commission (EC) brought together the representatives from the Western Balkans economies’ line ministries and regulatory authorities, relevant experts from EC’s Directorate‑General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT) and DG for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (NEAR) as ...


03 April 2018 | News

Skopje to host the first Western Balkans Digital Summit

Skopje – The first Western Balkans Digital Summit is to take place on 18-19 April in Skopje, bringing together Heads of Governments from the Western Balkans (WB), Ministers responsible for digital agenda from WB and European Union (EU) member states participating in the Berlin Process, European Commission (EC), Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), representatives from IT industries and ...


29 March 2018 | News

RCC: Ljubljana hosts 3-day training for young diplomats and SEENSA meeting

Ljubljana – Personnel security and awareness raising issues were the main topics of the South East European National Security Authorities (SEENSA) expert working group meeting, which was hosted by the Republic of Slovenia’s Government Office for the Protection of Classified Information (NSA) and the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Ljubljana today. 


27 March 2018 | News

Exploring models for automatic recognition of academic qualifications in Western Balkans and working on design of a joint exercise and online system for recognition of academic qualifications in Western Balkans

Podgorica - The Joint Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications (WG RAQ) adopted the Group’s Terms of Reference and the Plan of Work, at their second meeting jointly organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Education Reform Initiative of South Eastern Europe (ERI SEE) in Podgorica on 26 March 2018.


16 March 2018 | News

Svilanovic at the meeting of WB Foreign Ministers in Sarajevo: It is “action time” for the Western Balkans

Sarajevo – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Goran Svilanovic, takes part in the meeting of Western Balkans (WB) Six Foreign Ministers in Sarajevo today. The meeting is dedicated to the recently published EU’s  strategy on the enlargement perspective of the region, implementation of the Berlin Process’ 2017 Trieste Summit outcomes, and preparation ...


15 March 2018 | News

Regional Cooperation Council supports panel discussion of Silent Balkan Majority 'Tourism, culture and sport connect the region'

Svilanovic: Tolerant, forward looking people are the future of this region Jahorina/Sarajevo – Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Goran Svilanovic took part in the latest panel discussion of informal citizens' group from the Western Balkans „Silent Balkan Majority titled „Tourism, culture and sports connect the region“, as a part of the RCC’s support ...


15 March 2018 | News

RCC Board meets for the 34th time

 Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General Goran Svilanovic presented the Report on the organisation's activities in the last quarter of the past year at the first meeting of the Board of in 2018, held in Sarajevo today.


15 March 2018 | News

RCC celebrates its 10th Birthday, awards EXIT as Champion of Regional Cooperation for 2017

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) marked its 10th birthday by presenting a brief overview of the past 10 years of the organisation’s activities to its partners, stakeholders and friends and awarding the EXIT Festival as Champion of Regional Cooperation  for 2017, at a reception in Sarajevo last night.


13 March 2018 | News

RCC hosts 4th Donor Coordination Meeting for the Western Balkans

Brussels – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is hosting the 4th Annual Meeting of Donor Coordination for the Western Balkans, in Brussels today.


12 March 2018 | News

SEE 2020 Strategy Implementation: Programming Document for period 2018-2020 endorsed by the Strategy’s Participants

Brussels – Representatives of the South East Europe’s (SEE) economies participating in implementation SEE 2020 Strategy endorsed the Programming Document for the period 2018-2020, at the 6th Meeting of the SEE 2020 Programming Committee held in Brussels, under auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), today, 12 March 2018. 


12 March 2018 | News

WB6 Component Contact Points discuss Monitoring, Reporting and Deliverables in MAP REA implementation

Brussels - Component Contact Points (CCPs) from the  Western Balkans Six (WB6) economies involved in implementation of Multiannual Action Plan for the Regional Economic Area (MAP REA) met to discuss the deliverables of the MAP REA implementation to be achieved by the upcoming High level Summits in Sofia and London. Moreover, the meeting informed CCPs from the WB6 on several aspects of ...


07 March 2018 | News

Belgrade theatre play “They” in Sarajevo with support of the Regional Cooperation Council

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) brought contemporary ballet choreodrama “They” (‘Oni’) of the National Theatre in Belgrade to Sarajevo, which was hosted by National Theatre Sarajevo last night, within the Sarajevo Winter Festival 2018. 


05 March 2018 | News

Western Balkans’ Regional Economic Area on the Agenda of Kopaonik Business Forum 2018

Kopaonik – Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Secretary General Goran Svilanovic moderated a panel titled ‘Western Balkans - challenges: Regional economic area?’ within the 25th edition of the Kopanonik Business Forum, at Kopaonik today.


27 February 2018 | News

10 years of Regional Cooperation Council

With the region, for the region Sarajevo - Today the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) marks its 10 birthday. Our journey began on 27 February 2008 in Sofia at the meeting of Foreign Ministers of South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP), when the RCC was officially launched, as the SEECP operational arm, under which auspices it continues to operate. 


21 February 2018 | News

Western Balkans should enhance its competitiveness and improve its market orientation to fight unemployment

Although the Western Balkans region suffered the dramatic employment fall in the period following the global economic crisis 2008-2011, “the situation recovered over the subsequent five years and by 2016 total employment had again reached 6.5 million, representing an increase of 8.9%”, reads recently published report ‘Labour Markets in the Western Balkans: Performance, Causes and Policy ...


13 February 2018 | News

Discrimination against Roma and anti-Gypsyism in the enlargement region in the focus of the Berlin workshop

Berlin – A two-day workshop addressing discrimination and anti-Gypsyism in the enlargement region, organized under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) project, opened in Berlin today. The main objective of the workshop, gathering more than 80 ministerial officials from the Western Balkans and Turkey, is to ensure officials from ...


06 February 2018 | News

New EU Strategy for the Western Balkans sets out credible enlargement perspective maintaining the focus on regional cooperation

Sarajevo – The newly published EU Strategy for the Western Balkans (WB) reiterates regional cooperation and good neighbourly relations as keys for progress of the Western Balkans’ economies on their European path, naming the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) among those that provided a new momentum for dialogue.


01 February 2018 | News

Regional Deputy Ministers of Interior and Foreign Affairs Commit to Joint Approach to Small Arms and Light Weapons Control

Podgorica – Deputy Ministers of the Interior and Foreign Affairs from the region expressed determination to strengthen their commitments towards Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) Control in South East Europe (SEE), as agreed in the Joint Statement at the High Level Regional Conference - Reinforcing Commitments towards Small Arms and Light Weapons Control in South East Europe, held in ...


30 January 2018 | News

Second Meeting of MAP Coordinators and B2G Meeting on MAP takes place in Trieste

Trieste – The second meeting of the Coordinators for the RCC’s Multi Action Plan (MAP) for a Regional Economic Area (REA) in the Western Balkans six (WB6) took place in Trieste today. The meeting provided an overview on the key developments in MAP implementation in each of the WB6 economies and defined clear deliverables/targets for the Sofia and London Summits this spring/summer.


22 December 2017 | News

Belgrade audience thrilled with Sarajevo play ‘Divlje meso’

 RCC supported guest performance of ‘Divlje meso’ by Sarajevo National Theatre in Belgrade


20 December 2017 | News

Preparations for Western Balkans Digital Summit 2018 Continue

Berlin - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in cooperation with the European Commission and German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy continued with preparations of the Western Balkans (WB) Digital Summit 2018 at the two-day meeting held in Berlin, Germany on 19-20 December 2017. This meeting is a follow-up of the constituting meeting held at RCC in Sarajevo in October.


19 December 2017 | News

Fragmentation of capital market in WB6 compels for regional actions and further integration

First Meeting of the Western Balkans Six Capital Market Authorities Vienna - In line with its activities on the implementation of the Multi Annual Action Plan (MAP) for a Regional Economic Area (REA), the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) organised the first meeting of the Western Balkans Six (WB6) Capital Market Authorities “Diversification of financial systems to boost investment’, ...


18 December 2017 | News

RCC Secretary General takes part the Berlin Process’s meeting of Western Balkans Sherpas

Brussels – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Goran Svilanovic, took part at the meeting of the Berlin process’ Sherpas, organized by the European Commission, in Brussels today. The meeting focused on each of the Western Balkans (WB) economies’ reform measures in implementing the Multiannual Actin Plan (MAP) to create a Regional Economic Area in WB ...


15 December 2017 | News

The WB 6 Start Work on the Model for Automatic Recognition of Academic Qualifications

Belgrade – By formalising the Joint Education Reform Initiative of South East Europe (ERI SEE) – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications (WG RAQ) the Western Balkans Six (WB6) have officially started its work on finding the model for automatic recognition of academic qualifications in the region. The 1st formal meeting of the WG RAQ took ...


08 December 2017 | News

First Regional Meeting on the Digital Integration

Brussels - The first regional meeting on Digital Integration, in line with the Regional Cooperation Council's (RCC) activities on the implementation of the Multi Annual Action Plan (MAP) for a Regional Economic Area (REA), was held in Brussels on 7-8 December 2017. 


07 December 2017 | News

Regional Working Group on Justice and Western Balkans’ Judicial Training Institutions held a joint meeting

Brussels – Joint meeting of the regional Working Group on Justice (WGJ) and Western Balkans Judicial Training Institutions (WB JTIs) group was held in Brussels on 6-7 December 2017, under auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC).


06 December 2017 | News

Regional Workshop on Smart Specialisation in Research and Development

Brussels – Workshop on Smart Specialization for the Research and Development (R&D) and Industrial Working Group organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) was held in Brussels, on 6 December 2017.


05 December 2017 | News

Representatives of the Western Balkans presented developments in Open Science and Open Access policies in their economies together with EU Member States

Brussels - Representatives of the Western Balkans presented developments in Open Science and Open Access policies in their economies together with EU Member States at 5th meeting of the EU network of National Points of Reference on Scientific Information (NPR) in Brussels, on 5 December 2017.


05 December 2017 | News

Challenges and Responses of the Western Balkans discussed at the Policy Summit in Brussels

Brussels – The 18th edition of policy summit on the Western Balkans under the title: Western Balkans at a Crossroads: New Challenges, Changing Dynamics, organised by the leading Brussels-based think-tank Friends of Europe (FoE), with the support of the European Commission, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Rockefeller ...


30 November 2017 | News

RCC: Second Regional Coordination Conference for Counter-Terrorism and Prevention and Countering Violent Extremism opens in Brdo pri Kranju

Svilanovic: Departures from the region to Syria and Iraq almost completely stopped by mid-2016 Brdo near Kranj – Second Regional Coordination Conference for Counter-Terrorism (CT) and Prevention and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) in South East Europe (SEE), discussing the enhancement of cooperation and coordination of CT and P/CVE programmes and activities in the region, commenced ...


28 November 2017 | News

Regional Workshop on Prosecution, Detention, Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters begins today

Rakitje – Regional expert workshop “Prosecution, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration of Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters”, organised by Centre for Security Cooperation - RACVIAC in cooperation with Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina started in Rakitje, Croatia, today.


22 November 2017 | News

RCC, ETF continue building human capital in the region

Brussels – The Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Secretary General, Goran Svilanovic, and newly appointed Director of the European Training Foundation (ETF), Cesare Onestini, signed an agreement on continuation of cooperation between the two organisations, in Brussels today.


21 November 2017 | News

UNCTAD, RCC present Investment Policy Review of South East Europe

Geneva – The Investment Policy Review (IPR) of South East Europe (SEE), conducted by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) with the support of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), has been presented in Geneva today. 


21 November 2017 | News

RCC: Chisinau Hosts Cyber Security Drill for Europe and CIS Regions

Chisinau – Three-day cyber drill - Joint ALERT (Applied Learning for Emergency Response Teams) for Europe and CIS Regions, hosted by Ministry of Economy and Infrastructure of Moldova, has started in Moldovan capital today.


17 November 2017 | News

Bonn: Western Balkans reaffirms its strong commitment to regional cooperation in addressing environmental and climate challenges

Bonn – Western Balkans authorities in charge of the environmental and climate change gathered at high-level panel in Bonn, Germany today, voicing strong commitment to joint regional action in responding to environmental and climate challenges. The event was organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Serbia.  


10 November 2017 | News

RCC: Coordinated and Efficient Spending in Roma Integration Policies Needed to Produce Tangible Results

Tirana – The Regional Conference on Filling in the Budget Gaps in Roma Integration Policies, organized by the Cooperation Council (RCC)’s Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) Action Team, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Health and Social Protection of Albania, has started in Tirana today.  


09 November 2017 | News

RCC: Tirana to host Regional Conference on Filling in the Budget Gaps in Roma Integration Policies

Tirana – The Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 (RI2020) Action Team organizes a Conference on 10 November in Tirana, to address the needs and priorities in the Western Balkans and Turkey concerning filling in the budget gaps in Roma Integration Policies, with a specific focus on employment and housing for Roma.


08 November 2017 | News

South East European Military Intelligence Chiefs adopt OSINT assessment on Use of Social Media by Violent Extremists

Budva –  Open-source intelligence (OSINT) assessment dedicated to ‘Use of Social Media by violent extremists' has been adopted by the South East European Military Intelligence Chiefs (SEEMIC) at their 9th Conference held on 7 November 2017 in Budva, Montenegro. The event was co-organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Department for Military Intelligence ...


03 November 2017 | News

RCC: Joint Working Group on Investments discusses ways to attract and promote region's investment potentials

Vienna - The Western Balkans Six (WB6) Multi-Action Plan (MAP) for Regional Economic Area (REA) in the area of investments’ policy reform was in the focus of the regular meeting of SEEIC-CEFTA Joint Working Group on Investments (WGI), organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Vienna today.


02 November 2017 | News

RCC hosts Workshop on Improving the Investor State Dispute Settlement in South East Europe

Vienna - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted today a workshop on improving the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism in South East European (SEE) economies, which is a next step in the implementation of the investment reform agenda in the region. 


01 November 2017 | News

National Workshops on Public Employment Services Benchlearning kick-off in Pristina

A series of 12 workshops, two per each of the Western Balkans six economies, on Public Employment Services (PES) benchlearning, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employments and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP), kicked-off in Pristina today.


31 October 2017 | News

RCC hosts the first meeting of coordinators for the Western Balkans Regional Economic Area

Brussels - Following the Trieste Western Balkans (WB) Summit and the endorsement of the RCC’s Multi Action Plan (MAP) for a Regional Economic Area (REA) in the WB6, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Western Balkans Chamber Investment Forum (CIF), organized the first Meeting of the MAP coordinators that ended in Brussels today.  


30 October 2017 | News

London: Western Balkans Summit 2018 and Berlin Process in focus of Svilanovic’s meeting with UK Foreign Office and Commonwealth Officials

London – Goran Svilanovic, Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Secretary General met with UK’s Foreign Office and Commonwealth officials Fiona McIlwham, Peter Bainbridge, Director and Deputy Director of Western Balkans Department (EuD - WBD),  Andrew Page, Western Balkans Summit 2018 Coordinator and Andrew Staunton, Member of the core team for organisation of the Summit to discuss ...


26 October 2017 | News

RCC Secretary General discusses Western Balkans EU perspective with Bulgarian Foreign Minister in Sofia today

Sofia – Goran Svilanovic, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), met with Ekaterina Zaharieva, Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister for Judicial Reform and Minister of Foreign Affairs, in Sofia today. Svilanovic and Zaharieva talked about the priorities of Bulgaria’s upcoming six-month Presidency of the Council of the European Union, starting on 1 January 2018.


25 October 2017 | News

Preventing Corruption in Public Institutions through Efficient Identification of Risks

Ljubljana - Efficient identification of corruption risks and their assessment in public institutions is the main topic of a two-day Regional Forum which started in Ljubljana, Slovenia today.     


25 October 2017 | News

2nd Meeting of Mediators from the Region

Zagreb - Network of Mediators from South East Europe (SEE) concluded their second meeting in Zagreb today, discussing the dispute resolution laws, public awareness on mediation and potentials for improving investment climate in the region. The 2-day meeting gathered representatives of ministries of justice and mediators from SEE. The meeting was organised by the Regional Cooperation Council ...


18 October 2017 | News

Svilanovic at RCC Board meeting: Our efforts were focused on areas where ambitions in the region have grown

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General Goran Svilanovic presented the report on activities of the RCC Secretariat in the period 1 April – 31 August 2017 to the RCC Board at the meeting in Sarajevo today. The Board also heard the information and plans on the most important upcoming activities of the organisation, in particular those related to the implementation ...


17 October 2017 | News

RCC: Implementation of the action plan for Regional Economic Area – preparations for the 2018 Western Balkans Digital Summit begin

Sarajevo – Implementation of the Multi-Annual Action Plan (MAP) for the Regional Economic Area (REA), endorsed at the Western Balkans Summit in Trieste this year, commenced today in the area of digital integration. 


16 October 2017 | News

Regional Cooperation Council at 6th Summit100 of Business Leaders of Southeast Europe

Skopje – The 6th Business leaders’ Summit100, focusing on connectivity, discussing transport, free trade, infrastructure, branding and promotion of the region, mobility of people, as well as energy and digital agendas, kicked off in Skopje today.


12 October 2017 | News

The region discusses investments and International Investment Agreements

Geneva – The first regional meeting of the South East European (SEE) International Investment Agreements (IIAs) Negotiators was held in Geneva today under the umbrella of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), and in cooperation with the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), aiming to initiate the discussion on the main issues in the existing network of IIAs in the region and ...


06 October 2017 | News

RCC to present its Balkan Barometer 2017 – a perception survey of citizens and business communities on the situation in the region

Brussels – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is to present its 3rd edition of the public and business opinion survey – Balkan Barometer 2017 in Brussels, Belgium, on 9 October 2017.


22 September 2017 | News

Region’s administration representatives endorse Western Balkans Recommendations on Public Participation in legislative and decision-making processes

Sarajevo – The Regional Working Group on Better Regulation, consisting of relevant public administration bodies, endorsed the Western Balkans Recommendations on Public Participation of citizens and civil society in legislative and decision-making processes, at the meeting which ended in Sarajevo today.   


21 September 2017 | News

Roma Integration 2020: Budgeting in the region to be improved to reflect measures for integration of Roma

Belgrade - Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Roma Integration 2020 Action Team (RI2020) is given the mandate to work with the governments on developing regional standards for budgeting Roma Integration policies and mainstream budgeting responsible to Roma integration, at the RI2020 Task Force meeting which ended in Belgrade today.


20 September 2017 | News

New York: RCC Secretary General hosts meeting of Western Balkans foreign ministers and EU’s Han, discussing Regional Economic Area

New York – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Goran Svilanovic hosted an informal meeting of the Western Balkans foreign ministers, with the participation of the EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Johannes Hahn, organized on the margins of the 72nd Session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, in New York today.


14 September 2017 | News

RCC’s ESAP: Belgrade hosts regional training on benchlearning for Public Employment Services in the Western Balkans

Belgrade - The first ever assessors training on benchlearning for representatives of Public Employment Services (PES) from the Western Balkans, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council’ (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Regional Platform (ESAP) project, was held  in Belgrade today. 


08 September 2017 | News

RCC supports 5th edition of the International Festival of High School Theatre – JUVENTAFEST

Sarajevo – For the second year in a row the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) provides support to young regional talent gathered around International Festival of High School Theatre – JUVENTAFEST. 5th edition of this unique Festival that provides an excellent overview of high school theatre production in the region and beyond kicks-off tomorrow.  


18 August 2017 | News

Sarajevo Film Festival: Heart of Sarajevo for the best student film goes to Neven Samardzic for the film ‘Clean’

Sarajevo – Bosnia and Herzegovina’s film ‘Clean’ (‘Čistoća') was awarded with the 'Heart of Sarajevo' as the Best Student Film of the 23rd Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), at the official ceremony in Sarajevo last night. This award is being given under the patronage of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC). 


12 August 2017 | News

Sarajevo Film Festival: Competition for Best Student Film kicks-off

Sarajevo – The competition for the 'Heart of Sarajevo' for the Best Student Film of the 23rd Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), award under the patronage of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), officially kicked off today.


10 August 2017 | News

RCC patron of the 1st Sarajevo Film Festival's Best Student Film Award

Sarajevo – This year the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the international partner of the Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF) 2017 and patron of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the Best Student Film. The Student Film has been introduced in the competition programme of the SFF for the first time.


25 July 2017 | News

RCC hosts regional meeting on development of energy management in public sector

Jahorina - 1st regional meeting on development of system for energy management in public sector, hosted by Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), took place on Jahorina today.


18 July 2017 | News

Representatives of Western Balkan Public Employment Services discuss qualitative benchmarking

Tivat - Representatives of Western Balkan Public Employment Services (PES) met in Tivat today to discuss qualitative benchmarking, in the framework of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) Employment and Social Affairs Platform (ESAP) regional project.


12 July 2017 | News

Trieste: Six Western Balkans leaders endorse Regional Economic Area

Trieste - The leaders of Western Balkans Six (WB6) endorsed the Multi-annual Action Plan on a Regional Economic Area in the Western Balkans (MAP), at the summit in Trieste today. The MAP has been created to enable unobstructed flow of goods, services, capital and highly skilled labour, making the region more attractive for investment and commerce, accelerating convergence with ...


10 July 2017 | News

Sarajevo: RCC at the Sixth Western Balkans Civil Society Forum

 Sarajevo – The Sixth Western Balkans Civil Society Forum, organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) in cooperation with the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), opened in Sarajevo today.


06 July 2017 | News

Working Group on Open Science meets in Brussels and explores e-infrastructure possibilities in the region

Brussels – Regional Working Group on Open Science met in Brussels today. It mapped the existing e-infrastructure and made plans for further development in the Western Balkan economies, in order to support further development of the e-infrastructure in the region.


06 July 2017 | News

RCC hosts meeting of the Western Balkans' Judicial Training Institutions

Brussels – Western Balkans' Judicial Training Institutions (WB JTIs) met in Brussels today at a meeting organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat. The meeting discussed future work and cooperation among WB JTIs, relevant European Commission services, European Judicial Training Network and RCC.


05 July 2017 | News

RCC: Svilanovic meets Bildt, Heisbourg, and Cooper in Sarajevo to discuss regional cooperation in context of European integration

Sarajevo - Carl Bildt, former Swedish Prime Minister and Co-Chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR), François Heisbourg, Chair of the International Institute for Strategic Studies Council and Chairman of the foundation council of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, and Robert Cooper, Special Advisor at the European Commission, visited the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) ...


30 June 2017 | News

SEECP Foreign Ministers and Heads of State and Government endorse RCC’s Annual Report 2016-2017

Dubrovnik - Annual Report of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) 2016/2017 was endorsed by the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) Ministers of Foreign Affairs and consecutively by the Heads of State and Government at the meetings held in Dubrovnik today.


28 June 2017 | News

Annual report on SEE 2020 Strategy implementation endorsed

Dubrovnik – Governing Board of the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) SEE 2020 Strategy (SEE 2020) endorsed the Annual Report on Strategy’s implementation (ARI). The fourth Meeting of the SEE 2020 Governing Board was held in Dubrovnik today, in the eve of the RCC’s Annual meeting.


26 June 2017 | News

RCC to present report on its activities in the past year and the SEE 2020 Development Strategy’s implementation results, at meetings in Dubrovnik

RCC Annual Meeting Regional Cooperation Council and Croatian Chairmanship-in-Office 2016-2017 of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) are co-organizing RCC’s tenth Annual Meeting. The meeting is expected to endorse Annual Report of the RCC 2016-2017, featuring the work of the organization in the past year. The Report will be presented by the RCC Secretary General, Goran ...


21 June 2017 | News

Skopje: Regional public employment services work together to improve measures leading to reduction of unemployment

Skopje – Labour market statistics officials from the Public Employment Services (PES) of the Western Balkan economies agreed upon a set of quantitative indicators that are to be collected for the PES benchmarking analysis, at the meeting in Skopje today, organized under auspices of joint Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) and International Labour Organisation (ILO) regional project ...


12 June 2017 | News

Training of junior diplomats from South East Europe: crafting the future of the region

Zagreb – Goran Svilanovic, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) together with the host, Tomislav Lendic, Croatian Assistant Minister of Foreign and European Affairs (MFEA) in charge of Southeast Europe opened the 1st South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) Seminar for Junior Diplomats taking place in Zagreb from 11 – 15 June 2107.


30 May 2017 | News

SEE 2020 Monitoring Committee discusses initial findings of the SEE 2020 Strategy Annual Report on Implementation

Brussels – Monitoring Committee of South East Europe’s 2020 (SEE 2020) Strategy met in Brussels today at the technical meeting focused on monitoring process of the Strategy, to discuss initial findings of the draft Strategy’s Annual Report on Implementation (ARI), review the proposals for the revised headline targets and synergise efforts with other monitoring frameworks in SEE.


25 May 2017 | News

Svilanovic: We need to engage and empower youth, to make them more resilient to violent extremism propaganda

Zagreb – The role of education and civil society in prevention of violent extremism was a topic of the regional workshop, organised by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in Zagreb today.


24 May 2017 | News

Regional Working Group on Investments at its regular meeting in Podgorica

Podgorica – Regular, 7th meeting of Working Group on Investments (WGI) took place in Podgorica today.


23 May 2017 | News

Tirana Hosts Public Dialogue Forum on Roma Integration

Tirana – A two-day Public Dialogue Forum, discussing the implementation of the National Action Plan for Integration of Roma and Egyptians 2016-2020, opened in Tirana, Albania today. The Forum, focusing on the five main priorities - education, employment, social protection, housing and health with the respective achievements and challenges – has been organized by the Regional Cooperation ...


22 May 2017 | News

Sarajevo Business Forum 2017: RCC hosts panel "One Region, One Economy - Connectivity and Potential"

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) hosted a panel "One Region, One Economy - Connectivity and Potential" at Sarajevo Business Forum 2017 (SBF 2017) today. This year’s edition of the SBF 2017 is being co-organized by the RCC.


16 May 2017 | News

RCC Board accepts organisation’s Annual Report 2016 – 2017

The Annual Report of the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) 2016 – 2017 has been accepted by the organisation’s Board, at its 32nd meeting in Sarajevo today.


28 April 2017 | News

RCC Secretary General discusses regional cooperation in SEE with Turkey officials

Ankara – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretary General, Goran Svilanovic, was in a visit to Ankara for consultations. The visit to Turkey comes within his regular dialogue with the RCC Board Participants. The Secretary General met the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Yildiz and high officials from Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He also had talks with representatives ...


21 April 2017 | News

Assessment on use of social media by violent extremist discussed by SEEMIC Expert Working Group

Podgorica - South East Europe Military Intelligence Chiefs’ forum - Expert Working Group (SEEMIC EWG) met at their 9th meeting on 20 April 2017 in Podgorica to discuss the draft Open-source intelligence (OSINT) assessment and agenda of the main SEEMIC conference planned later this year.


10 April 2017 | News

Germany continues its support to Regional Cooperation Council

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat and the German Federal Foreign office (Auswärtige Amt) signed an agreement on financial grant to support RCC’s public awareness activities. The grant agreement of 100, 000 euro is to support RCC communication and public awareness activities in the course of 2017-’18. The agreement was signed by the RCC Secretary General, ...


16 March 2017 | News

Champion of Regional Cooperation Award presented to Sarajevo Film Festival

Sarajevo – Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF) was officially presented with Champion of Regional Cooperation award in Sarajevo last night. Goran Svilanovic, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) presented the Award to Mirsad Purivatra, Director of SFF thanking him for vision and commitment to promote art and culture within the South East Europe (SEE) and the SEE brand ...


14 March 2017 | News

Regional Cooperation Council launches redesigned website

Sarajevo – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) launched its redesigned, user friendly website today. The website has undergone significant redesign, reorganisation and technical upgrade to reflect the RCC work as envisaged by the new triennial Strategy and Work Programme 2017-2019 as well as updates of results and achievements in implementation of the South East European (SEE) growth ...


14 March 2017 | News

Sarajevo Film Festival - Champion of Regional Cooperation in South East Europe

Sarajevo – Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) has selected Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF) as the Campion of Regional Cooperation in South East Europe in 2016. The Award will be officially presented to Mirsad Purivatra, Director of SFF by Goran Svilanovic, RCC Secretary General at a ceremony in Sarajevo on 15 March 2017.


21 October 2016 | News

RCC: Sarajevo hosts a concert of Balkan traditional music

Sarajevo, 22 October 2016 – Last night Sarajevo was the host of the concert promoting the dialogue of the Balkan people through its colourful traditional music. Spanish artist, maestro Jordi Savall, with ensemble Hesperion XXI and guest musicians from....


28 June 2016 | News

RCC and ILO to launch ‘Employment and Social Affairs Platform’ Project

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) are launching tomorrow (29 June 2016) the “Employment and Social Affairs Platform” (ESAP) project at a one day Conference in Sarajevo. The ESAP project is supported by the European Commission’s Directorate General (DG) for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion.


20 April 2016 | News

RCC call for proposals - 300.000 EUR for projects supporting implementation of the SEE 2020 Strategy

Sarajevo - The Regional Cooperation Council Secretariat (RCC) is seeking proposals for the implementation of the South East Europe 2020 (SEE 2020) Strategy with financial assistance from the RCC Small Grants Instrument for 2016. The total amount for these grants is 300.000 EUR.


21 May 2015 | News

Governing Board of RCC’s SEE2020 Strategy Meets in Tirana

TIRANA/SARAJEVO – The South East Europe 2020 Strategy (SEE 2020) Governing Board held its second meeting in Tirana today. The SEE 2020 Strategy is the Regional Cooperation Council’s (RCC) primary instrument for boosting growth in the region, creating jobs and assisting the EU accession process. The Strategy was adopted in November 2013 and today’s meeting of the Governing Board was ...


18 May 2015 | News

RCC to present South East Europe Development Scoreboard

SARAJEVO, 18 May 2015 – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat will officially launch and present the South East Europe Development Scoreboard (SEEDS) on the sidelines of its Annual Meeting, on the 22nd of May 2015 in Tirana, Albania. SEEDS is a comprehensive but simple web-based platform which enables any user to monitor the implementation of the region’s development ...


21 August 2014 | News

RCC and Sarajevo Film Festival’s round table on “Regional cooperation in the audio visual sector”

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Sarajevo Film Festival are organizing this Friday a round table on regional cooperation in the audio visual sector. This round table, on the margins of the Sarajevo Film Festival, aims to re-confirm the consensus and commitment of the RCC Western Balkans members to contribute and develop further the regional programme ...


09 September 2013 | News

RCC to present South East Europe 2020 strategy for creating 1 million jobs in the region

SARAJEVO – The first draft of the South East Europe (SEE) 2020 strategy for creating one million new jobs in the region will be presented in Skopje tomorrow. The document is being prepared by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, in close consultation with governments and initiatives from South East Europe.


02 September 2013 | News

Second edition of the Academy on Media Law in South East Europe to kick off in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – The second edition of the Academy on Media Law in South East Europe will open in Sarajevo tomorrow, 3 September. It will focus on issues of media pluralism, public service broadcasting and the freedom of the media on the Internet.


30 May 2013 | News

Regional Cooperation Council key forum for all-inclusive regional cooperation in South East Europe, say organization’s participants

OHRID/SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is a key forum for inclusive regional cooperation in South East Europe, participants of the 5th Annual Meeting of the organization agreed in Ohrid today, while endorsing its new strategy for the 2014-2016 period and the annual report of the RCC Secretary General.


30 May 2013 | News

Annual Meeting endorsed new Regional Cooperation Council strategy and annual report

OHRID/SARAJEVO – The 5th Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) endorsed the organization’s new strategy for the 2014-2016 period and the Annual Report of the RCC Secretary General. The meeting was held in Ohrid on 30th May 2013.


19 March 2013 | News

New work programme of South East Europe Investment Committee to focus on SEE 2020 growth strategy

SARAJEVO - The South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) adopted an updated work programme at its meeting in Sarajevo today, focused on development of the South East Europe 2020 regional growth strategy.


18 March 2013 | News

South East Europe 2020 growth strategy in focus of regional meeting, to be held in Sarajevo tomorrow, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – Development of the South East Europe (SEE) 2020 regional growth strategy and its implementation will be the main topics of the 12th South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) Meeting, which will be held in Sarajevo tomorrow.


11 March 2013 | News

Seven German ambassadors from Western Balkans and foreign ministry discuss regional issues, express support to RCC work

SARAJEVO - Ambassadors of Germany in Belgrade, Podgorica, Prishtina, Sarajevo, Skopje and Tirana, accompanied by colleagues from the foreign ministry, discussed political situation in Western Balkans and the region’s European perspective during a visit to the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat in Sarajevo today. 


26 February 2013 | News

Regional Cooperation Council to mark its 5th anniversary, inaugurate Champion of Regional Cooperation award

SARAJEVO – A panel discussion and an award for best achievement in cooperation in South East Europe will be central elements of the marking of the fifth anniversary of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), in Sarajevo tomorrow.


08 January 2013 | News

New Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council takes up post

SARAJEVO – Goran Svilanović, the new Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), has assumed his duties in Sarajevo today.


10 December 2012 | News

Regional Cooperation Council wins award for extraordinary contribution to humanism

SARAJEVO – The International Peace Centre Sarajevo (IPC) assigned its traditional Sloboda (Freedom) award to the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) for an extraordinary contribution to humanism, fight for human rights and freedom in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Europe and the world.


21 November 2012 | News

Western Balkans policy on new skills for new jobs to be adopted at RCC, FES co-organized event in Sarajevo, tomorrow

SARAJEVO, 21 November 2012 – A policy paper on ‘new skills for new jobs’ in the Western Balkans is expected to be adopted at a meeting hosted by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, in Sarajevo, tomorrow.


13 November 2012 | News

Museums network in South East Europe established at RCC-organized ministerial conference in Skopje

SARAJEVO/SKOPJE – South East European Museums Network, which will enhance cross-border cooperation between these cultural institutions, was established at a ministerial conference held in Skopje today.


12 November 2012 | News

Preservation of cultural heritage in South East Europe in focus of Skopje meeting, held under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO/SKOPJE – Funds for rehabilitating South East European cultural heritage, including a 2.8 million euro worth project, will be presented at a meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council’s Task Force on Culture and Society, which began in Skopje today.


09 November 2012 | News

Western Balkans ministers adopt 11 targets for regional economic growth by 2020, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO/TIRANA – Western Balkans economy ministers adopted today 11 targets for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in the region, to be reached by 2020. The commitment was made at the ministerial conference of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)'s South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC), held in Tirana today.


21 September 2012 | News

3rd road congress wraps up in Sarajevo, agrees ways to develop road infrastructure in South East Europe

SARAJEVO – A two-day Road Congress in South East Europe ended in Sarajevo today, with over 400 participants from ten countries agreeing to establish a professional regional forum for the development of the road sector.


11 July 2012 | News

Long-term social development in Western Balkans to be discussed at RCC, FES event in Sarajevo, tomorrow

SARAJEVO – A two-day regional conference New Skills for New Jobs in Western Balkans will open in Sarajevo tomorrow. The event will discuss steps to establish a long-term vision of social development in the region, in line also with EU social agenda.


15 June 2012 | News

South East European Heads of State and Government praise RCC work, thank outgoing and approve of new Secretary General

BELGRADE/SARAJEVO – The Heads of State and Government of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) praised in Belgrade today the achievements of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its Secretary General Hido Bisevic, approving at the same time of the election of his successor Goran Svilanovic.


14 June 2012 | News

South East European foreign ministers appoint Goran Svilanović as the new Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council

BELGRADE/SARAJEVO – Goran Svilanović has been appointed the new Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) by the ministers of foreign affairs of the states participating in the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP), at their meeting held in Belgrade today.


13 June 2012 | News

Annual Meeting endorses RCC annual report and nomination of new Secretary General

BELGRADE/SARAJEVO – The 4th Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) endorsed in Belgrade today the Annual Report of the organization’s Secretary General and the nomination of Goran Svilanovic as the next RCC Secretary General for a three-year period, effective as of 1 January 2013.


08 June 2012 | News

1st media law academy in SEE ends in Zagreb, makes recommendations on public service media remit, media pluralism and professionalism

ZAGREB, 8 June 2012 – The first Academy on Media Law in South East Europe wrapped up its work in Zagreb, Croatia, today, with a set of recommendations to enhance public service media remit, media pluralism and responsibility.


31 May 2012 | News

First academy on media law in South East Europe to kick off in Zagreb

ZAGREB – The first academy on media law in South East Europe will open in Zagreb, Croatia, on Monday, 4 June, under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), with support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, and the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina. 


30 May 2012 | News

South East European experts prepare regional conventions on criminal, civil and commercial matters, under RCC auspices

BUCHAREST/SARAJEVO – Two regional conventions, on criminal and on civil and commercial matters, were discussed by over 70 South East European experts in justice and home affairs at a meeting in Bucharest today, held under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


28 May 2012 | News

Conference on investigative journalism and data protection in South East Europe to open in Pula, Croatia

ZAGREB/SARAJEVO/PULA – A conference to promote investigative journalism and journalistic independence in South East Europe, while respecting data protection principles, will open in Pula, Croatia, on Wednesday, 30 May.


25 April 2012 | News

RCC’s Southeast Europe Investment Committee adopts 2-year work programme in Sarajevo, to boost region’s competitiveness

SARAJEVO – The Southeast Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) adopted its two-year Work Programme for 2012-2013 in Sarajevo today, at the first meeting held under the umbrella of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


25 April 2012 | News

Greater involvement of girls in ICT to be promoted in Sarajevo by Ministry of Communications, RCC, and partners

SARAJEVO – Opportunities for study, work and personal development that information and communication technologies (ICT) offer to girls will be in focus of International Girls in ICT Day to be marked in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, tomorrow.


26 March 2012 | News

Eight South East European stock exchanges to sign platform for joint action, under RCC auspices in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – Directors of eight South East European (SEE) securities (stock) exchanges will sign a Platform for Joint Action under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, in Sarajevo, tomorrow, 27 March.


15 March 2012 | News

Project to improve cooperation in South East Europe by strengthening RCC to kick-off in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – The project Improving Cooperation in South-East Europe by Actions for Strengthening the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will be launched in Sarajevo tomorrow, at a kick-off meeting organized by the Central European Initiative (CEI) in cooperation with the RCC Secretariat.


13 March 2012 | News

Regional cooperation in South East Europe, EU membership focus of 4th RCC anniversary celebration

SARAJEVO – The 4th anniversary of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) will be marked in Sarajevo tomorrow with a panel discussion From ownership to responsibility: Regional cooperation in South East Europe and EU membership.


08 December 2011 | News

Head of LSE institute to speak about perceptions of crisis-struck Europe, sign agreement with RCC, in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – The impact of the current euro-zone crisis on perceptions of ‘Europe’ will be the topic of a lecture by Professor Kevin Featherstone, Head of the European Institute at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), to be held at the Sarajevo School of Economics and Business (EFSA), tomorrow.


02 December 2011 | News

South East European conference evaluates regional needs in justice, home affairs and security cooperation, under RCC auspices

BELGRADE/SARAJEVO – A two-day conference to evaluate regional needs in justice, home affairs and security cooperation ended in Belgrade today, establishing mechanisms to foster South East European cooperation on criminal investigations and protection of fundamental rights.


24 November 2011 | News

Western Balkans’ research and development strategy project launched in Belgrade, with RCC support

BELGRADE/SARAJEVO – A two-year project to develop a strategy for regional dimension of Research and Innovation cooperation in the Western Balkans has been launched today, in Belgrade, Serbia.


24 November 2011 | News

Ministerial conference in Paris welcomes management transfer of South East Europe Investment Committee from OECD to RCC

PARIS/SARAJEVO – The management of the South East Europe Investment Committee (SEEIC) has been transferred today to the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) at a ministerial conference held in Paris, France.


16 November 2011 | News

131 million euro European Commission strategy for Western Balkan discussed at Regional Cooperation Council in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – More than 70 participants, representing beneficiaries from the Western Balkans and Turkey, took part in the latest Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) Multi-Beneficiary Programme Coordination Meeting on regional cooperation that ends in Sarajevo today.


14 November 2011 | News

Independence, sustainability of public service media in South East Europe needs to be strengthened, agrees Sarajevo conference

SARAJEVO – The economic standing, editorial independence and autonomy of public service media need to be improved, to avert political interference, achieve managerial stability, ensure sustainability and stable funding for the public service media, in order for them to fulfill their role, concluded participants of an international seminar on public broadcasting, held in Sarajevo today.


11 November 2011 | News

Seminar on freedom, independence and sustainability of public service media in South East Europe to open in Sarajevo on Monday

SARAJEVO – Over 50 participants from the Regional Cooperation Council’s 13 South East European members will discuss independence and sustainability of the region’s public service media in Sarajevo, on Monday, 14 November.


25 October 2011 | News

RCC-hosted South East European social agenda week to open in Sarajevo today

SARAJEVO – A social agenda week will begin in Sarajevo today, focusing on social economy and creation of new jobs in South East Europe over the next decade. The event will be hosted by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


24 October 2011 | News

Conference on urban planning in South East Europe takes place in Sarajevo today, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – Regulation of informal settlements was the topic of a conference on urban planning in South East Europe, which took place today at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.


13 October 2011 | News

South East European health ministers foster inclusion of health into all policies, tackle killer diseases, at RCC- and WHO-supported forum

BANJA LUKA/SARAJEVO/COPENHAGEN – Health ministers from South East Europe are devoting two days to considering how to involve other crucial sectors in reducing death and disease in their countries. The Third Health Ministers’ Forum is meeting in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, on 13–14 October 2011, attended by health ministers and high-level officials from the 10 countries ...


13 October 2011 | News

Twelve South East European military intelligence chiefs step up cooperation in Sarajevo today, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – Chiefs and senior officials of military intelligence from 12 South East European countries, members of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), agreed in Sarajevo today to move forward regional cooperation in the field of intelligence exchange and adopted rules of procedures to put the cooperation in practice.


10 October 2011 | News

South East European health ministers to tackle killer diseases together, with RCC and WHO support

BANJA LUKA/SARAJEVO/COPENHAGEN – Health ministers and high level officials from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Israel will hold their third ministerial forum in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, on 13-14 October 2011.


06 October 2011 | News

First training of South East European education inspectors concludes in Montenegro today, supported by RCC

DANILOVGRAD/SARAJEVO – The first regional training of education inspectors ended today at the Regional School for Public Administration (ReSPA) in Danilovgrad, Montenegro.


30 September 2011 | News

Protocol on regional cooperation among South East European public media signed in Sarajevo, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – Directors general of 12 public broadcasters signed today in Sarajevo a Protocol on Regional Cooperation in Education and Training among members of the European Association of Public Service Media in South East Europe, under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


28 September 2011 | News

Directors general of South East European public media to sign cooperation protocol in Sarajevo, with RCC support

SARAJEVO – Directors general of 13 public service broadcasters from South East Europe, supported by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), will sign a protocol on regional cooperation in Sarajevo on Friday, 30 September.


07 September 2011 | News

RCC, EC organize second meeting on implementation of Single European Sky in South East Europe

SOLIN/SARAJEVO – The second conference of the Governing Body for the Implementation of Single European Sky in South East Europe (ISIS Programme) concluded today in Solin, Croatia, with a recommendation that competent ministers extend ISIS Programme to a third phase after 2012.


06 July 2011 | News

Serbian President Tadic gives full support to RCC activities in promoting regional cooperation in South East Europe

SARAJEVO – President of the Republic of Serbia, Boris Tadic, paid a visit today to the Secretariat of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in Sarajevo, where he expressed full support to the work of the organization during his meeting with RCC Secretary General Hido Biscevic.


06 July 2011 | News

RCC to host first meeting on implementation of regional strategy on justice and home affairs in South East Europe

SARAJEVO – The first meeting of the Steering Group on Regional Strategy on Justice and Home Affairs, designed to facilitate the Strategy implementation, will open in Sarajevo tomorrow, under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


30 June 2011 | News

Heads of State and Government of South East Europe praise work of Regional Cooperation Council

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – The Heads of State and Government of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) praised today in Budva the successful implementation of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Strategy and Work Programme 2011-2013, endorsing the Annual Report of its Secretary General.


29 June 2011 | News

South East European foreign ministers voice support to RCC activities, endorse its Annual Report

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) countries commended today the work of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and its Secretary General at a meeting in Budva, Montenegro.


28 June 2011 | News

Regional cooperation in South East Europe encouraging, says RCC Secretary General at the organization’s Annual Meeting

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – “Regional cooperation in South East Europe has exhibited encouraging signs over the past year“ said Hido Biscevic, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), while opening the organization's third Annual Meeting in the Montenegrin town of Becici near Budva, on 28 June 2011.


24 June 2011 | News

Annual Meeting of Regional Cooperation Council to be held in Budva, Montenegro

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – The third Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), will take place in the Montenegrin town of Becici near Budva, on 28 June 2011.


23 June 2011 | News

Regional Cooperation Council’s Task Force on Culture and Society constituted in Cetinje today

CETINJE/SARAJEVO – “The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Task Force on Culture and Society will promote cooperation in preserving the cultural heritage of South East Europe”, said Hido Biscevic, RCC Secretary General, at today’s constitutive meeting of the Task Force in Cetinje, Montenegro.


21 June 2011 | News

Regional Cooperation Council Task Force on Culture and Society to begin work in Cetinje

CETINJE/SARAJEVO – The Secretariat of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Task Force on Culture and Society will be opened on Wednesday, 22 June 2011, at the premises of the Montenegrin Ministry of Culture, in Cetinje.


25 May 2011 | News

First meeting of national security authorities from South East Europe to discuss regional platform for exchange of classified information

SOFIA – The first meeting of heads of national security authorities from South East European countries – members of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) – will take place in Sofia, Bulgaria, on 25-27 May 2011.


24 May 2011 | News

RCC to host first meeting on social agenda for the Western Balkans

SARAJEVO – A two-day conference to discuss possible development of regional social agenda for the Western Balkans is to open in Sarajevo, tomorrow. It will address issues of employment, poverty reduction and social inclusion.


28 April 2011 | News

Regional Cooperation Council website introduces new user-friendly features

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat launched today several new online features, designed to diversify user-friendly access to the content of the organization’s website.


19 April 2011 | News

Conference on road infrastructure safety in South East Europe to open in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – The second Conference on Road Infrastructure Safety Management in South East Europe, aimed at halving the number of traffic accidents in the region by 2020, will open in Sarajevo tomorrow.


31 March 2011 | News

Western Balkans and Europe 2020 conference agrees RCC best suited to help align regional programmes with Europe 2020

BRUSSELS/SARAJEVO – Over 100 participants of a Western Balkans and Europe 2020 – Towards Convergence and Growth conference of regional initiatives and international donors concluded in Brussels today that the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) is the institution most apt to help align regional programmes with goals of Europe 2020 strategy of the European Union (EU).


24 March 2011 | News

RCC-organized conference on Western Balkans and Europe 2020 to discuss growth in the region, gather close to 50 institutions and donors

SARAJEVO/BRUSSELS – A Western Balkans and Europe 2020 – Towards Convergence and Growth coordination meeting of regional initiatives and interested donor institutions will take place in Brussels, on 30-31 March 2011. The event will be organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


17 March 2011 | News

South East European ministers to endorse regional strategy on justice and home affairs, prepared under RCC auspices

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – A two-day conference of ministers of justice and interior of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP), which is expected to endorse the Regional Strategic Document on Justice and Home Affairs 2011-2013 developed by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat and relevant stakeholders from the region, commenced in Budva today.


16 March 2011 | News

Role of Western Balkan parliaments in EU accession to be debated in Sarajevo, under RCC and EC auspices

SARAJEVO – Role of national parliaments in Western Balkans and Turkey in negotiations for EU accession will be discussed at a meeting hosted by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat in Sarajevo, on 17-18 March.


04 March 2011 | News

Prospects for regional cooperation in South East Europe in 2011 and beyond focus of the 3rd RCC anniversary celebration

SARAJEVO – A panel discussion South East Europe in 2011 and Beyond: Sharing the Same Vision will be held in Sarajevo, on Monday, 7 March, to mark the third anniversary of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC).


24 February 2011 | News

Role of parliaments in legislative process and government oversight discussed in Sarajevo, under EP and RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – A two-day seminar on the role of parliaments in the legislative process and in the government oversight in Western Balkans will wrap up in Sarajevo today at the premises of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


28 January 2011 | News

Montenegrin Foreign Minister, RCC Secretary General sign protocol on hosting regional task force on culture and society

BECICI/SARAJEVO – A protocol on the host country arrangements for the Secretariat of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Task Force on Culture and Society was signed this evening by Montenegrin Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration, Milan Rocen, and RCC Secretary General, Hido Biscevic, in Becici, Montenegro.


25 January 2011 | News

Integration of e-infrastructures in South East Europe to be discussed in Sarajevo, with Bosnia and Herzegovina government and RCC support

SARAJEVO – The sixth meeting of the South East European Research Area for e-Infrastructures (SEERA-EI), organized by the Ministry of Communication and Transport of Bosnia and Herzegovina and hosted by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, will commence in Sarajevo tomorrow.


10 December 2010 | News

RCC Secretary General meets EU Commissioner for Enlargement

Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Hido Biscevic, met in Brussels yesterday with the EU Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy, Stefan Fuele, to discuss regional cooperation in South East Europe.


29 November 2010 | News

RCC hosts conference to finalize draft South East European strategy on justice and security cooperation

SARAJEVO – A two-day conference of national authorities, regional organizations and international partners on justice and security cooperation in South East Europe is to open in Sarajevo tomorrow, under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


22 November 2010 | News

Stronger national airspace authorities in South East Europe focus of a Sarajevo workshop, organized by RCC and Belgian EU Presidency

SARAJEVO – A three-day workshop on establishment and empowerment of airspace National Supervisory Authorities (NSA), will open tomorrow at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.


25 October 2010 | News

Workshop on national coordination and regional cooperation in counter-terrorism matters in South East Europe to open in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – Implementation of effective national coordination and regional cooperation strategies to counter terrorism will be in focus of a high-level workshop targeting countries of South East Europe, which will open in Sarajevo on Wednesday, 27 October 2010. The event will be co-hosted by the Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat. 


24 October 2010 | News

Energy Community, RCC to host workshop on reducing emissions in the energy sector in South East Europe

SARAJEVO – A two-day workshop on reducing pollutions from the power industry in South East Europe will commence in Sarajevo tomorrow, co-organized by the Secretariats of the Energy Community (EnC) and the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC).


19 October 2010 | News

Inspectors to seek ways of improving quality of education in South East Europe, with RCC and OSCE support

SARAJEVO – Role of inspectors in education quality assurance in South East Europe will be in focus of a two-day regional conference that will open in Sarajevo tomorrow, at the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


15 October 2010 | News

Sarajevo conference calls on European institutions to support public media in digital transition for South East Europe

SARAJEVO – Broadcasters and government officials pledged to ensure a smooth digital transition in South East Europe and called on European institutions for financial support in the interests of European cohesion.


13 October 2010 | News

International conference on digitalization and sustainability of public broadcasting in South East Europe to commence in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – A two-day international conference on digitalization and sustainability of public service media in South East Europe will open in Sarajevo tomorrow, under the auspices of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).


30 September 2010 | News

OSCE organizes workshop on democratic policing in South-Eastern Europe, with Regional Cooperation Council support

SARAJEVO – A regional workshop on democratic policing organized by the OSCE Strategic Police Matters Unit with the support of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) started in Sarajevo today.


29 September 2010 | News

International conference on higher education reform concludes in Dubrovnik today

DUBROVNIK/SARAJEVO – A three-day international forum on higher education reform ended today in Dubrovnik, Croatia, agreeing to focus on a strategic development of Western Balkans’ education capacity over the next 10 years, in the context of the EU higher education area.


29 September 2010 | News

OSCE- and RCC-supported workshop on democratic policing in South East Europe to open in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – A two-day workshop on democratic policing in South East Europe will open in Sarajevo tomorrow, at the premises of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat. The event has been organized together with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).


15 September 2010 | News

RCC Secretary General to outline the organization’s new three-year strategy at a press conference in Sarajevo tomorrow

SARAJEVO – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Hido Biscevic, will present the organization’s new strategy for 2011-2013, and outline the main activities scheduled for this autumn, at a press conference in Sarajevo, tomorrow, 16 September.


08 September 2010 | News

Improved air connectivity, increased air traffic and its safety, goals of South East European conference held in Montenegro

BUDVA/SARAJEVO – A conference on the Implementation of Single European Sky in South East Europe (ISIS Programme) agreed today that improved air traffic regulation will stimulate connectivity and create new market opportunities in the region.


23 June 2010 | News

South East European heads of state give full support to the Regional Cooperation Council, approve appointment of its Secretary General

ISTANBUL/SARAJEVO – The Heads of State and Government of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) expressed today at the summit meeting in Istanbul their appreciation for the work of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) in transforming the current advanced regional cooperation to a new level, focusing on concrete and targeted projects aimed at regional recovery and economic ...


22 June 2010 | News

South East European foreign ministers re-appoint Hido Biscevic as Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council

ISTANBUL/SARAJEVO – The ministers of foreign affairs of the states participating in the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) re-appointed Hido Biscevic as the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), at their meeting in Istanbul today.


22 June 2010 | News

Annual Meeting endorses new RCC strategy, annual report and nomination of Secretary General

ISTANBUL/SARAJEVO – The Annual Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), held in Istanbul today, endorsed the organization’s 2011-2013 Strategy and Work Programme, and the Annual Report of its Secretary General for the past year’s activities.


02 June 2010 | News

RCC Secretary General hails messages of EU-Western Balkans meeting in Sarajevo, and new era of regional relations

SARAJEVO – “The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) strongly supports political meetings, statements and decisions that lead to a new era of relations in South East Europe, based on trust, dialogue and tolerance”, said RCC Secretary General, Hido Biscevic, at today’s high level EU-Western Balkans meeting in Sarajevo, organized by the Spanish Presidency with the support of the EU.  


21 May 2010 | News

South East European conference agrees in Bucharest today on the need to strengthen regional efforts in fighting corruption

BUCHAREST/SARAJEVO – Participants of a two-day regional South East European (SEE) anti-corruption conference concluded in Bucharest today that countries in this part of Europe should develop more effective mechanisms to fight corruption.


19 May 2010 | News

Bucharest-held regional anti-corruption conference to present study on corruption in nine South East European countries

SARAJEVO/BUCHAREST – A two-day regional South East European anti-corruption conference will open in Bucharest tomorrow, 20 May.The event is to present and debate a study on integrity and resistance to corruption of the judicial systems in nine South East European countries...


17 May 2010 | News

European Movements from South East Europe meet for the first time in Sarajevo, under RCC auspices

SARAJEVO – National European Movement Councils from eight South East European countries met in Sarajevo today for the first time to discuss greater civil society involvement in regional cooperation. The event was hosted by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.


14 April 2010 | News

Regional Cooperation Council launches redesigned website and new publication, a monthly newsletter

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat launched today a redesigned version of the organization’s website and a new publication, the monthly e-newsletter.


04 March 2010 | News

RCC Board starts discussing the organization's strategy for the next three years

SARAJEVO – The Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board discussed today the first draft of the new, three-year Strategic Work Programme of the organization for the period 2011-2013.


23 February 2010 | News

International conference on overcoming economic crisis in Western Balkans to mark 2nd RCC anniversary

SARAJEVO – A two-day regional conference “Western Balkans in 2020 – Overcoming the Economic Crisis and Developing Competitive Economies” will open in Sarajevo tomorrow. The event, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat, will also mark the 2nd anniversary of the organization.


09 December 2009 | News

Reforms, confirmed European perspective and development cooperation set base for advancement of South East Europe, says RCC head at Western Balkans conference in Brussels

BRUSSELS – “The EU enlargement process must continue to be based upon the principle of fulfilment of accession criteria, on one hand, and on full confirmation of the European perspective for all countries of South East Europe, on the other“, said Hido Biscevic, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), at a high-level conference on the Western Balkans, held in Brussels ...


07 December 2009 | News

High-level Western Balkans conference to be held in Brussels on Wednesday, under EU auspices and with RCC support

SARAJEVO/BRUSSELS – A conference on the Western Balkans “Overcoming the economic crisis – from regional cooperation to EU membership” will take place in Brussels, on Wednesday, 9 December. The event will be organized by the Swedish EU Presidency and the European Commission, in cooperation with the Regional Cooperation Council.


03 December 2009 | News

RCC Board discusses future strategic focuses of organization's activities and supports efforts of its Secretariat in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – The 29 members of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Board discussed today in Sarajevo further strategic prioritization of activities of the organization and gave full support to its Secretariat in these efforts.


15 September 2009 | News

RCC Board discusses situation in South East Europe and praises work of the organization’s Secretariat in Sarajevo

SARAJEVO – The Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), Hido Biscevic, presented his latest quarterly report on the activities of the RCC Secretariat to the 29 members of the organization's Board, who gathered in Sarajevo today. The report covers the period between 9 May and 9 September 2009.