Montenegrin Pan-European Union held conference on topic: “Building a Sustainable Future for Montenegro through the EU Accession Process and the Sustainable Development Goals” in Tivat Municipality

Montenegrin Pan-European Union held conference on topic: “Building a Sustainable Future for Montenegro through the EU Accession Process and the Sustainable Development Goals” in Tivat Municipality

Montenegrin Pan European Union organized international conference “Building a Sustainable Future for Montenegro through the EU Accession Process and the Sustainable Development Goals” , in Hotel Palma in Tivat, on Friday and Saturday 1-2 February 2019. The conference is part of the Jean Monnet project “Through Integration towards Sustainability in Montenegro – ERASMUS +, Jean Monnet Action”, supported by EU and co-financed by Ministry of public administration. Agenda of the Conference.

Key points on the first day of conference in session called “UN Agenda 2030 – EU Agenda 2025” were:

Gordana Djurović, president of Montenegrin Pan European Union, explained how EU follows Sustainable development goals, i.e. progress: ” European Union, especially now, with withdrawal of USA from Paris climate agreement and other big turbulence in multilateral scene, found herself as a leader of sustainable development together with UN system, and in that sense recognized need to follow sustainable development goals throughout her own monitoring system. As a candidate for full fledged membership who has opened chapter 27, between UN and EU indicators, we are on a path to track situation in Montenegro. EU has selected 100 indicators that follow 17 universal goals, which include everything that one state would love to have in her surrounding and those are also our development goals.”

Aleksandar Drljević, Chief Negotiator, the Office for European Integration/PM Cabinet, indicated that these agendas are two complementary processes (EU- UN) which cannot be realized without one other: “It is especially important that throughout communication strategy we promote this story even more. I think that neither in the EU or in other international flows, enters individual or specific institution solely. It is highly important that we talk about European standards and values, since that is the only way to achieve our goal.” He emphasized that Government has adopted new Program for accession of Montenegro in the EU with new approach that tends to connect two agendas on the way that throughout achieving goals from accession procedure there is also progress in implementing sustainable development goals. He also announced opening of the last chapter (number 8) Competition, and possible closure of chapters with  internal readiness accomplished.

Petar Vujović, Acting Secretary, Secretariat for Tourism and Entrepreneurship, Municipality Tivat , talked about where Municipality Tivat is today, its cooperation with agriculture, NGOs and education sector, likewise he reminded that two out of three biggest touristic projects in Montenegro, are implemented in Tivat. Also he talked about progress thanks to smart strategic planning, confident investors and clear vision of development. Municipality Tivat conducts 16 projects financed by EU funds. As an indicator that Tivat is going in direction of implementation of sustainable development goals, he stated that it is first Municipality in Montenegro that installed underground container, solar benches and provided conditions for bicycle use.

Miodrag Dragišić, the UNDP in Montenegro, talked about 17 goals of sustainable development, emphasizing that even though it all look like fairy tale or long distant dream, it is not quite like that: “This is really global dedication of all states. These are not goals that are imposed by UN, these are goals that all member states (currently 193 of them) have been dedicated to, or at least agreed on. This is vision for development of the better world till 2030. Behind this 17 goals, stand 169 sub-objectives and 249 indicators for measurement of their implementation. They are universal, which mean they are not just for one state or region.” He concluded that for both agendas, implementation is a key, especially on local level, giving the fact that Montenegro is among the first countries to fully incorporate sustainable development goals in their system and from strategic level, throughout NSSD, did everything it should be done.

Jovanka Vujačić, director of high school „Mladost“, Municipality Tivat, talked about active methods of education that are implemented in EU countries and in our country: „When we talk about education system, we must go step by step, since it is a live system that should be constantly changed, adapted and filled with innovations. And professors are the ones that should mostly contribute to the creativity of students and develop their critical thinking. That is what we tend to do, not just as a school, but as a whole Montenegrin education, we need to  foster more active approach towards students. Director emphasized that school has subject that is related to European integration, since they recognized importance that this process has on students.

Mediator Adrijan Vuksanović, Vice-president of Montenegrin Pan European union, thinks that placement of this conference is right when talking about EU and European values, since it is the city that has a long history of cherishing multicultural values and open-mindness for everything that is new and with quality, as well as sustainable development in terms that it also strategically plans its development.

On the second day, 2nd February, conclusions on the topic ”Measurement of sustainability: NSSD 2030 and EU agenda” were:

Predrag BjelićUniversity of Belgrade, Economic Faculty, presented position and experience of Serbia on these two topics. He stated that today’s global economic relations mostly include trade activities, so in that order contemporary EU foreign trade agreements are in coordination with sustainable development goals.

Zlatko Mikulič, Vice-president of Pan-European movement in Slovenia, asserted that water management became key issue in international relations, and we need to address it together and systematically. He also presented perspective of Slovenia, that has similar natural preconditions as in Montenegro, as a model for water management on our territory.

Marija Tripunović, Representative of the Office for European Integration for Chapter 27 – Environment and climate change, explained that there exist none chapter that are negotiated between Montenegro and EU that is not coordinated with sustainable development goals. It is mostly visible on chapters 27 Environment, 23 Justice and fundamental rights, and 19 Social policy and employment.

Bojana Radević, Head of Department for National Coordination of Statistical Data Sources, Statistical Office of Montenegro, spoke about importance of statistical data for assessment of conditions and progress in these two agendas. In addition, she stated that UN has defined precise methodology for statistics that should be adopted all over the world, so that data can be compared and used for further analysis.

Jelena Knežević, MSc, National council for sustainable development of Montenegro, presented activities that Montenegro will realized, in order to  successfully implement  National Strategy for Sustainable Development till 2030, especially in contexts of strengthening institutional capacities for conduction of sustainable development policy, creation of complex monitoring system of indicators for sustainable development, followed by reform of statistical system and strengthening partnership for sustainable development.

Aneta Kankaraš, Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro (MSDT), underlined that throughout National Strategy for sustainable development, Montenegro distinguish itself among first countries in the Western Balkans that completely accepts and implements UN requirements addressed in Agenda for sustainable development 2030 in its national system. It gives special attention to the national circumstances, first of all EU accession process, and also capacities and development levels, with respect to national policy and its priority.

Further on in second session organized on Saturday, thematic workshops have been conducted. Focus was on calculating ecological footprint, together with students, pupils and other participants, followed by discussion about the results and lecture on current levels of consumption and effects that are related to changes in everyday consumption routine.

At the end of conference set of closing remarks and policy recommendations where adopted, that supported better communication and empowerment of common efforts in the process of achieving unique development and integration goals of Montenegro, all in order to promote green and humane way of development in Montenegrin journey towards full membership into EU.

Click on the link:⇒ FINAL REMARKS AND RECOMMENDATIONS_2.2.2019_TISIM_Tivat, ⇐ to see closing remarks and recommendations adopted on the TISIM conference.