Association GEA from Banja Luka (Bosnia and Herzegovina) has been selected to participate at Civil Society Forum Trieste, the 4thintergovernmental Summit of Western Balkans and EU countries that brought together representatives of civil society organisations with the objective of providing a platform for their impact on the so-called Berlin Process.
The Forum considered the topics high on the agenda of the political Summit: youth cooperation, rule of law and anti-corruption, enterprise development and innovation potentials, regional cooperation and bilateral issues; also, it initiated debates on questions as environment, energy and climate change, migrations, media freedoms, the issue of Brexit in relevance to the Western Balkans and the possible role of civil society in increasing the efficiency of the Berlin Process through communications.
The Civil Society Forum policy recommendations have been formulated for topics which are in line with the priority themes of the Trieste Summit and were developed in consultation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Italy, as hosts of this year’s Summit: business environment and innovation, rule of law, youth cooperation, regional cooperation and bilateral issues. The recommendations were prepared during an earlier expert meeting and with inputs provided through a broad online consultation process. with the involvement of a wide circle of CSOs from all over the Balkans.
The outcomes of the Civil Society Forum meeting in Trieste have been communicated to the intergovernmental Summit in several ways: at a policy event attended by a number of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and a number of representatives of civil society of the Western Balkans, on July 12; at a press conference organised by the Civil Society Forum; in form of recommendations which have been presented to the Summit organisers and through the follow-up advocacy process.
The Civil Society Forum contributes to the Berlin Process in two ways: by extending its democratic potential, through inclusion of citizens in its proceedings, as well as by presenting technical and expert support to fulfillment of the Process goals, through own engagement in pushing forward the cooperation and the reform agenda in the region.