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Marović: Montenegro’s success depends on the rule of law

The Executive Director of Politikon Network, Jovana Marović, deems important that Montenegro prompts a message it is ready to accept new, tightened negotiating conditions.

The new European Union’s enlargement methodology is positive for Montenegro, but success on the way to the Union depends on the progress in the rule of law, it has been said from the Politikon Network

”It is important to send a message that we are ready to negotiate under new tightened conditions. It is important to prompt a message that we are ready to face the problems more seriously”, said Marović to the MINA agency.

It is, as she explained, one side of the story.

‘Having in mind that aspect Montenegro should express readiness to negotiate under new conditions. On the other side, I think Montenegro should still wait with such decision to see what will happen with the new instruments in practice”, said Marović.

”Many were satisfied with the Strategy for a Credible Enlargement Perspective back in 2018 but the good part of those instruments stayed dead letter”, said Marović.

She thinks that, when it comes to principles, there is nothing wrong with the new methodology.

”Few things are of particular importance to Montenegro: the EU member states will monitor the situation on the ground while encouraging reforms; the EC will allow participation of the Western Balkan countries in various EU programs; the EC will develop the sanctioning and rewarding model if there are (or not) results in the field of the rule of law”, said Marović.

She says that the new methodology works for Montenegro, in the sense that after eight years of negotiations it needs some encouragement: “the summits which would be regular for the Western Balkan and special summits for particular WB countries, then the roadmaps for functioning of the rule of law, democratic institutions and the strengthening of the economy. These are all the things which would work for Montenegro”, mentioned Marović.

She believes that the way the European Commission would value the eight year long MNE-EU negotiations” in the sense how it would count it in relation to the new thematic parts and six new clusters” is what potentially would not work for Montenegro. Montenegro should open all six thematic chapters or clusters; potentially the one where is chapter 8 could still be closed.

When asked if the new methodology can affect the speed of negotiations, she answered that there are no major differences if the areas are organized in six clusters or 35 chapters.

”No matter whether the negotiations are conducted within the six clusters or 33 chapters or 35, if there are no major steps by the countries” explained Marović, “the success, of course, depends on the progress in the rule of law”.