Serhat TUNAR -TDO- Leaders of the Western Balkan countries met in Ohrid, Northern Macedonia, for the first step in what they call the 'little Schengen' system.
Following the rejection of the European Union accession talks for Northern Macedonia and Albania, the two countries and Serbia have moved to find alternative solutions to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services and capital. Other Western Balkan countries are expected to participate.
The meeting in Ohrid was attended by northern Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, Bosnia and Herzegovina Council of Ministers President Denis Zvizdic and Montenegrin Economy Minister Dragica Sekulic.
Stressing the importance of regional cooperation, Aleksandar Vucic said World Bank officials told them that only the total savings at the respective border points between the countries would be 229m euros when they bring in phytosanitary and veterinary inspection from the border points and enable faster transit of trucks. He added that it remains to be seen how much the citizens of Albania, Northern Macedonia and Serbia will save.