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New campaign: Our friendship is a success story

You often ask us how the European Union supports Montenegro. Which areas do we support? How does our support make a difference for citizens? Who are the beneficiaries of EU-funded projects? These are just some of the typical questions we get every day. We have decided to combine the answers to these questions into our new database of EU-funded projects, which is located right on this website, in the EU projects section. In one place, we have presented more than 100 EU-funded projects grouped into 14 different areas. There you can find out what the EU and Montenegro have achieved together in the fields of human rights, cross-border cooperation, agriculture, environmental protection, transport, economy, media, health and other vital areas.

We are promoting these projects through a campaign entitled “Our friendship is a success story”, which showcases the long and successful cooperation between the European Union and Montenegro. Speaking about the launch of the campaign, Oana Cristina Popa, the European Union Ambassador to Montenegro, said the EU brings fundamental change to Montenegro through projects implemented together with national and local authorities, civil society, businesses and citizens.

“We build hospitals and homes, help farmers and invest in the production of healthy food, improve and modernise healthcare, support public administration reform and provide opportunities for the unemployed to start their own businesses. We also help protect Montenegrin rivers, lakes, forests and meadows and support the country to adopt European nature protection standards. We offer young people the opportunity to study abroad, but also to acquire new knowledge and skills through informal education. We are especially committed to vulnerable groups, so women, minorities, the LGBTIQ community, young people and persons with disabilities now have more rights and better protection. I invite you to visit the website and find out more about it,” said Popa.

Official data show that the European Union is the largest donor and investor in Montenegro. Since 2007, when the IPA Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance was launched, the EU has invested more than 600 million euros in grants to help the country implement reforms on its path to EU membership and improve the lives of Montenegrin citizens.

“We strive to encourage fundamental democratic and economic reforms in the country so it could better prepare for full membership and functioning within the EU. Our main motive is to bring tangible benefits to the citizens of Montenegro right now, not just when the country becomes part of the Union. We want you to know that the future of this country and the entire region is our joint responsibility,” the EU Ambassador to Montenegro added.

Zorka Kordić, the Chief Negotiator for Montenegro’s accession negotiations with the European Union and the national IPA coordinator, considers the EU’s non-repayable financial support as a crucial in the overall transformation of the country and society on the path to EU membership.

“Through IPA, whose third cycle (2021-2027) has just begun, the EU is actually financing its enlargement policy, which is its key foreign policy priority. It supports comprehensive reforms in candidate and potential candidate countries, and also encourages regional cooperation and good neighbourly relations so that such countries are prepared for the post-accession period. EU-funded projects help improve transport and energy infrastructure in Montenegro, contribute to a healthier environment and biodiversity protection, enhance educational, healthcare, social and judicial systems in the country, encourage agriculture and rural development and connect people on both sides of our borders. In this way, we are investing in the future of the country and we are gradually bringing it closer to EU values and standards, because we see the future of Montenegro in the EU,” the chief negotiator said.

You can follow the results of the cooperation between the EU and Montenegro through success stories about EU-funded projects, which you can find here. EU-funded projects will be regularly promoted on the EU Info Centre social media platforms (Facebook and Instagram), where we are going to organise valuable prize contests. We invite you to visit our new EU-funded projects database if you haven’t already, learn new things about them and later test your knowledge and win a prize. Because our friendship is a success story.