The seventh EU Strategy Forum for the Adriatic-Ionian Region was held in May of this year in Tirana, Albania. It was an opportunity to put the human and economic resources of this region on the top, so it would remain and become even more attractive and successful. On this occasion, on May 16, 2022, Bosnia and Herzegovina took over the one-year chairmanship of the Adriatic-Ionian Initiative and the EU Strategy for the Adriatic-Ionian Region (EUSAIR) from the Republic of Albania.
The chairmanship, on behalf of Bosnia and Herzegovina, was assumed by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Josip Brkić, at a ceremony held during the ministerial meeting of the member countries of the initiative and strategy in Tirana, Albania.
In his presentation, Brkić announced that Bosnia and Herzegovina will continue to promote European values during the presidency with a special focus on the need to join the Western Balkans region to the European Union.
– In order to implement the priorities of the presidency, Bosnia and Herzegovina will organize a series of activities in the field of strengthening the role of youth, environmental protection, tourism, and digital and infrastructural connectivity in the region – Brkić added.
In addition to the representatives of BiH and Albania, the meeting was attended by high officials of other members of the initiative from Montenegro, Greece, Croatia, Italy, San Marino, North Macedonia, Slovenia and Serbia.
The Adriatic-Ionian Initiative was founded in 2000 with the aim of encouraging development, strengthening security and intensifying cooperation between the countries of the region, and accelerating integration processes in Europe.
EUSAIR, one of the four EU macro-regional strategies, represents a powerful instrument for strengthening regional cooperation with the aim of encouraging growth, sustainable development, and bringing the countries of the Western Balkans closer to the European Union.
The AIC Forum, the Forum of Chambers of Commerce of the Adriatic-Ionian Region, of which the FBiH Chamber of Economy has been a member since its inception, has played an important role in the organization and holding of events since the beginning of EUSAIR.
The role of chambers
AIC Forum already traditionally supports the EUSAIR Forum by participating in all round tables and organizing independent side events, with special emphasis on meetings on the topic of tourism.
Among other panels, this year, in the organization of the AIC Forum, and in cooperation with the Adriatic-Ionian Initiative and the EUSAIR Forum, a round table was held on the topic “Organization of the chamber system in the Adriatic-Ionian region”.
The presidents of chambers from all countries of the Adriatic-Ionian region presented the systems and functions of the role of chambers in each country individually, as well as the role and strength of the Forum of Chambers of Commerce of the AI region, in order to better understand the function and influence of the Forum on the development of the EUSAIR Strategy, especially in the current revision of the Action plan.
The focus of the discussion was ways and models of improving the Chamber’s role as a promoter and key actor for business support in the AI region, and thus influencing the development of the region itself.