The Irish Presidency has today agreed, on behalf of the Council of the European Union, with Montenegro to open and provisionally close the second chapter in its negotiations under its EU accession process.
Ambassador Rory Montgomery, speaking after the Intergovernmental Conference held today in Brussels, said that “the Irish Presidency is delighted to have opened and provisionally closed Chapter 26 on Education and Culture with Montenegro today, the second chapter to have been opened and provisionally closed since Montenegro began its negotiations in June 2012.”
“This event is a positive reflection of the effort that Montenegro has been putting into the process. We expect to see this work continuing and intensifying, particularly in areas of core importance to the process, especially the chapters on judiciary and fundamental rights, and justice, freedom and security. Montenegro also has vital work to do to tackle rule of law issues in the country. We will work to achieve further progress in the negotiations during the remainder of our term.”
Enlargement is a key part of the Irish Presidency programme and of its theme of “stability, jobs, and growth”. The Presidency sees enlargement policy as continuing to be the EU’s most effective tool in supporting reform and transformation throughout Europe. The obvious economic benefits, in the form of a larger common market, translate into jobs and economic growth, both for the EU and its new and aspiring members. Ultimately the policy contributes to both our security and our prosperity. In this regard, the Irish Presidency has been working to progress the Union’s enlargement policy with all aspiring members and looks forward to seeing further steps being taken before the end of our Presidency.