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Regional cooperation

7 pages, pdf
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Regional cooperation 

Publisher: Lidija Topic

Volume: 7 pages, pdf


Regional cooperation is, no doubt, one of the buzzwords in Southeast Europe (SEE). One comes across it in every official speech, policy paper and media piece dealing with the politics and economics of the area. The growth of different schemes has been a defining feature of the Balkan political landscape since Dayton peace. Local diplomatic jargon abounds with barely pronounceable acronyms such as SEECP, SECI […]. Regional cooperation, to a large degree, is a process driven by powerful extra-Balkan actors such as the EU, NATO, USA and the international financial institutions (IFIs)’ [Bechev, 2006]

Ten years after the EU-Western Balkans Summit in Thessaloniki, regional cooperation is still the buzzword in South East Europe. But the buzzword is beginning to signify an opportunity to find and deliver not only stability and security but also a regional development agenda. At the same time the local actors are developing an awareness of the importance of regional cooperation. This chapter analyses the progress made by the Western Balkans, and by South East Europe more broadly, as well as the challenges encountered in the field of regional cooperation since the Thessaloniki Declaration.