SEETO with EU support organised the 13th AMM (Annual Minister Meeting) held in Brussels on 6th of December, meeting gathered Ministers and high state officials from Western Balkan Region (WB6), Ambassadors, SEETO steering committee members, representatives from WB6 region, DG NEAR, DG MOVE, high representatives from IFI-s and many other important stakeholders from Transport Institution and industry.
Opening the event, Mr. Alain Baron on behalf of European Commission encouraged the Western Balkan Ministers chief transport policy-makers to continue working on transport infrastructure and transport policies, emphasizing the role of transport in connecting people. As the main objectives of transport development, he pointed out digitalisation, decarbonization and efficiency. He also underlined the importance of road safety and decreasing number of traffic accidents as one of the most significant transport reform measures. Mr. Baron further underscored the essential role of regional collaboration and technical assistance programs in meeting these targets.
Respective Ministers from Western Balkan countries on their speeches highlighted the importance of continuous development of SEETO Core and Comprehensive network, with a special focus on the implementation of Connectivity Reform Measures.
The 13th AMM was highlighted with political agreement of all parties regarding the seat of the Transport Community Treaty which was reached. Western Balkans Ministers of Transport have decided that Belgrade (Serbia) will be the headquarters of the Secretariat of the Transport Community. Decision was confirmed in Brussels on the first ministerial meeting of the EU-Western Balkans Transport Council. This choice required consensus of all six partners from the region.
The Western Balkan countries are at a turning point since the Transport Community Treaty marks the beginning of a new era of cooperation between the EU and the Western Balkans parties, as well as connectivity for the whole of Europe.
At the closure of AMM meeting, Mr. Lasica thanked EU Commissioners, WB6 Ministers, DG NEAR and DG MOVE and all other major stakeholders for their continuous involvement and support to Western Balkan countries.