High-level Western Balkans conference to be held in Brussels on Wednesday, under EU auspices and with RCC support

07 December 2009

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 (RCC).

The conference will focus on the financial and economic situation in South East Europe and discuss the importance of regional cooperation in overcoming the economic crisis. It will be hosted by the Foreign Minister of Sweden, Carl Bildt, and the Commissioner for Enlargement, Olli Rehn.

Speakers will include: Hido Biščević, RCC Secretary General, Miguel Angel Moratinos, Foreign Minister of Spain (tbc), Božidar Djelić, Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia, Olli Rehn, Member of the European Commission responsible for Enlargement, Dario Scannapieco, Vice President of the European Investment Bank, Varel Freeman, First Vice President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Imre Tarafás, Vice-Governor of the Council of Europe Development Bank, Ardian Fullani, Governor of the Bank of Albania, Michael Leigh, Director General for Enlargement at the European Commission, Marco Buti, Director General for Economic and Financial Affairs, European Commission, Vesna Pusic, Chair of the Parliamentary EU Committee, Croatia, and Radmila Šekerinska, Chair of the National Council of European Integration, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Invitations have been extended to foreign ministers and other governmental officials and experts from EU Member States, the Western Balkans and other countries. High level participation is also expected from international financial institutions. Journalists and representatives of think-tanks have also been invited.

Commission accredited journalists are invited to attend the press conference on Wednesday, 9 December 2009, at 10.30 a.m., at the Sofitel Hotel, Place Jourdan 1, Brussels, Belgium.

More information on the conference is available HERE.