During the Grant Award Ceremony for the beneficiaries of the 2nd CfP within the IPA CBC Programme Montenegro-Kosovo 2014-2020, funded by the European Union, it was emphasised that valuable cross-border initiatives that Montenegro and Kosovo have been jointly implementing since 2010 indicate the success of the overall concept of cross-border cooperation, which is an essential stimulus to the European integration process.
The National IPA coordinator Zorka Kordić pointed out that the importance of the cross-border cooperation model is confirmed by the visible results of projects that have been implemented so far in cooperation between Montenegro and Kosovo. She underlined that these projects set the basis for long-lasting cooperation in the field of cultural exchange, tourism and health care, economic development, environmental protection, sustainable use of natural resources, social cohesion and improving access to employment. She reminded that with their interest expressed within the 2nd CfP, partner organizations and institutions from Montenegro and Kosovo have shown readiness to contribute to the improvement of living conditions in the border area with their projects worth 2.4 million euros.
Director General of the Directorate for Financing and Contracting of EU Assistance in the Ministry of Finance and Social Welfare of Montenegro Marija Vukčević expressed the full readiness of the Contracting Authority for cooperation with grant beneficiaries and, in order to provide all interested parties with the opportunity to become beneficiaries of IPA funds in a timely manner, she emphasized that in cooperation with partners from Kosovo they are already working on the 3rd CfP that is planned to be published in March 2021.
The Head of the Cooperation Section in the Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro, Herman Spitz, emphasized that through this EU program, Montenegro and Kosovo strive to overcome common challenges in a sustainable way. He stated that the process of resolving socio-economic issues at the local level is demanding, but it brings long-term progress. He added that it is a pleasure for the European Union to contribute to this progress through the 2 million euro we have committed to this CfP. Moreover, he underlined that the EU expects to be able to feel the real impact that these projects have on local communities in the future.
The Secretary General and Head of the Operating Structure in the Ministry of Local Government of Kosovo, Trim Berisha, announced the continuation of cooperation projects within the 3rd CfP, as well as within the new generation of programmes foreseen under the next IPA III financial perspective.
Through the 2nd Call for Proposals, published in January 2019, the European Union funds in the amount of 2.017 million euro were allocated for cross-border cooperation projects, while with co-financing of the project beneficiaries the total worth of the projects is 2.4 million euro. Through their initiatives, the project beneficiaries will contribute to the improvement of the quality of life, by encouraging employment and social inclusion, as well as by enhancing of tourism, cultural and natural heritage.
*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence