Brussels (16th May) - Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle met with the new Turkish Ombudsman Nihat Ömeroğlu. Commissioner Füle expressed the support of the European Commission for the institution of Ombudsman and for the efforts of Mr Ömeroğlu in this very important position. "We believe that an independent and active Ombudsman is crucial for strengthening confidence of Turkish citizens in the functioning of the administration and the rule of law in the country. I appreciate that Mr Ömeroğlu sees his work in the context of Turkey´s efforts to become the member of the European Union," Commissioner Füle said after their first meeting in Brussels.
Customs legislation in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is well aligned with the body of EU law. But further measures are necessary. That is why, with the help of EU experts, the Macedonian customs legislation and procedures were assessed, and evaluated against the requirements of EU law.
Even though it is one of the oldest industries in Serbia, agricultural production still faces several weaknesses and gaps in its value chain. Producers are constantly facing new requirements for food safety and quality standards in the processing sector yet there is a lack of demonstration centres for training and support for new initiatives.
Designation of National Reference Laboratories is one of the requirements of EU legislation on official food and feed controls. In Turkey there was a need for a National Reference Laboratory to provide a higher quality food safety system and guidance for alignment with the relevant standards. The project was launched in 2005 to fill this gap and meet EU accession requirements.
For many years Albania has struggled to police effectively its maritime borders. Illicit trafficking has constituted a security threat to Albania and to its neighbours. The Albanian capacity to patrol its maritime borders remains a major concern, although the government’s efforts together with a strong international presence at sea, have had a positive impact.
The Bosnia and Herzegovina Central Bank (CBBH) has contributed to the country’s post-war recovery. It has made significant progress towards introducing administrative and policy mechanisms that will allow it to participate fully in the European System of Central Banks when Bosnia and Herzegovina becomes an EU member.
There are around 430,000 people with disabilities in Croatia, 9.7% of the total population. The Ears Wide Open project was designed to improve working conditions, communication and integration of students with hearing and other disabilities, both in schools and later in workplaces.
Teaching children about the environment is vital for the future. That is why the EU, together with the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, organised a project around a play based on the brochure
"Let me tell you a secret about the environment".
Kosovo faces a big challenge in the field of energy efficiency due to low levels of energy production and high levels of energy consumption. The EU funded a project to invest in energy-saving measures in public buildings, which brought
environmental and economic benefits.
Montenegro's preparations for European Union accession in the area of free movement of goods are moderately advanced. The country needs to build up its institutional and administrative capacity, enhance cooperation between State institutions and align its legal framework with EU legislation.