PES supports Commission’s new Western Balkan strategy

06/02/2018

Western Balkans

The PES welcomes the new Commission strategy adopted today on the Western Balkans' European prospects.

PES President Sergei Stanishev said:

"The progressive family has always actively promoted EU integration for the Western Balkan countries. They need a strong incentive for positive reform, especially to fight anti-democratic pressures.

"The PES will support all its member parties from the region in their effort to uphold high democratic standards, strengthen the rule of law and improve social and economic perspectives for all citizens, thereby preparing for a future EU membership."

Speaking during the presentation of the new strategy in the European Parliament in Strasbourg today, Mr Stanishev also pointed to the good example of the progressive government of Zoran Zaev in FYR Macedonia, which signed a friendship and cooperation treaty with the neighbouring Bulgaria and is currently negotiating with Greece to resolve the conflict about the country's name.

European socialists and democrats fully support High Representative Mogherini in her drive for deeper cooperation with the Western Balkans. To that end, PES will hold a European Council preparation meeting in May in Sofia, together with the leaders of its member parties from the region ahead of the EU-Western Balkans Summit.