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  • European Talks

    If you get tired of reading, then have a listen to our podcast. European Talks podcast is a short form conversation that aims to untangle difficult questions on various topics related to Serbia’s relations with the EU and its member states, by talking to experts, diplomats, and other relevant actors. Whether you are a researcher, a politician, or just genuinely curious about the topic, European Talks podcast will provide you with valuable ideas, answers as well as new questions.

    Winds of change in Montenegro: What to expect in the next period?

    The recent elections in Montenegro suggest that major changes could soon take place in the country in the Western Balkans. Montenegro has opened all chapters in the process of negotiations with the EU, but how far has the enlargement process really progressed and what can be expected in the coming period when it comes to the EU accession process, but also with the political climate in the country? We spoke with Stevo Muk, President of the Managing Board of the Institute Alternative, Podgorica-based think tank.
     

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    En route to a better public administration: Why bottom-up pressure is necessary

    Welcome to the first episode of the WeBER podcast series of European Talks podcast, a new communication tool in the regional WeBER initiative context. Each podcast episode will be devised around a relevant public administration reform and civil society related topic in the region. With this series, we mainly target civil society, experts, government officials and external interested audience (rather than public). Highly conversational in nature, it is available in video format on WeBER portal - www.par-monitor.org. In the first episode, our guest is Gregor Virant, Head of SIGMA (Support for Improvement in Governance and Management, a joint initiative of the OECD and the EU, principally financed by the EU), and former Minister of Public Administration of Slovenia. Milena Lazarević, an expert on this topic, of the European Policy Centre - CEP Programme Director and WeBER initiative Team Leader, talked with him about the SIGMA principles of public administration, the WeBER initiative and why civil society must monitor and involve in the public administration reform process. Useful links: www.sigmaweb.org www.par-monitor.org www.europeanpolicy.org

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    Advancing Albania’s road to EU: Side with agendas and ambitions

    In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the Council of the EU gave the green light to the opening of accession talks with Albania. What are the expectations regarding the next steps, given the current pandemic restrictions? Can the revised enlargement methodology lead to a more effective accession process? What is the current political climate in this country? In this episode, we talked to Gjergji Vurmo, programme director of Institute for Democracy and Mediation - IDM, Tirana-based think tank.

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    What does the future of EU accession process hold? The case of North Macedonia

    In this episode, we talked about the current political situation in North Macedonia, EU sentiments of its citizens, and about the strengths and risks of the revised accession methodology for the Western Balkans. Our guest is Dr Simonida Kacarska, director of the European Policy Institute - EPI in Skopje, North Macedonia.

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    EP remains engaged in fostering democracy in the Western Balkans

    A few days ago, elections were held in Serbia, in which the ruling party won a convincing victory. These elections were boycotted by part of the opposition. With our dear guest, Vladimír Bilčík, member of the European Parliament and its rapporteur for Serbia, we talked about the election results, relations between the European Union and the countries of the Western Balkans, and regional relations, especially the turbulence between Montenegro and Serbia, and how this affects the EU accession process.

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    European Investment Bank: assisting the Western Balkans against COVID-19

    The European Commission announced over €3.3 billion of EU financial support for the Western Balkans mobilised jointly with the European Investment Bank (EIB) in order to tackle the COVID-19 crisis and help with the social and economic recovery. How will this support be implemented and what will be the role of the EIB? We will address these questions in this podcast episode with the Head of EIB Regional Representation for the Western Balkans, Dubravka Negre.

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    COVID-19 crisis is an opportunity to enhance EU – Western Balkans relations

    The beginning of this year promised to reset the sluggish dynamics of the EU-Western Balkans relationship, following the EU’s endorsement of a revised accession framework. However, the pandemic has shifted the focus to other topics, like solidarity and economic recovery. What impact will developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic have on the EU accession process of the region? What are the EU’s expectations from the region in the following period? We will address these questions in this podcast episode with our Chairman of the Governing Board and BIEPAG member, Srđan Majstorović.

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    EU, Western Balkans and COVID-19: Preventing EU’s cold from causing a bad fever in the region

    The COVID-19 pandemic has stopped the whole world, in one way or another. How is Brussels, the "capital of the European Union", coping with the crisis? How are think tanks, educational institutions and NGOs in Europe struggling with it and how is it affecting their work? Does the EU have time to pay attention to its Western Balkan neighbours now, or is it preoccupied with its own problems? And - to what extent do events in Europe affect the Balkans, whether we like it or not? To discuss these topics, we have invited Nenad Šebek, journalist and CSO's and media consultant and Dušan Reljić, Head of the Brussels Brussels office of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP Berlin). Find more about SWP here: www.swp-berlin.org/en/

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    Keeping a physical distance, yet keeping the region close

    The ongoing #COVID19 pandemic can be observed as a case study for the global, European, and regional solidarity and cooperation - or, the lack of thereof. Which side outweighs? When it comes to the Western Balkans, how this crisis influenced the already fragile relationships between countries? Can we hope that we will get out of this crisis smarter? To discuss this and other related topics, we reached Majlinda Bregu, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)and former member of the Albanian Parliament and Minister of European Integration in the Albanian Government. RCC serves regional cooperation and European and Euro-Atlantic integration of South East Europe in order to spark development in the region to the benefit of its people. Find out more about their work here: www.rcc.int.

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    Kako sprečiti krah srpske privrede usled globalne krize izazvane pandemijom koronavirusa

    Veliki napor je uložen u borbu protiv pandemije COVID-19, poznatog kao novi koronavirus, kako bi se sačuvali životi i izbegao „italijanski” scenario, koji se ogleda u kolapsu zdravstvenog sistema usled preopterećenja ogromnim brojem životno ugroženih pacijenata u kratkom periodu. Uvedene su nezapamćene mere ograničenja kretanja i društvenih kontakta, zabranjen je ili ograničen rad velikom broju, naročito malih, biznisa. Nažalost, smrtonosno dejstvo virusa snažno se oseća i u srpskoj ekonomiji, a naročito u privatnom sektoru. Kako bi se sprečili potpuni krah privrede i gubitak ogromnog broja radnih mesta, potrebna je hitna i odlučna akcija države: svojevrsni „finansijski kontraudar” na koronu. O merama koje treba preduzeti razgovaraju saradnik CEP-a, koordinator Radne grupe Nacionalnog konventa o Evropskoj uniji za vođenje pregovora o pristupanju Srbije EU za Pregovaračko poglavlje 4 – Sloboda kretanja kapitala i Pregovaračko poglavlje 9 – Finansijske usluge, Marko Obradović, i Nenad Šebek, novinar i konsultant civilnog društva i medija. Tekst Marka Obradovića o predloženim merama možete pronaći ovde: cep.org.rs/blogs/houston-we-have-a-problem/

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