Visit our archive of Documents on The Cyprus Problem A)? GHT="50">
Compact version
Today's Suggestion
Read The "Macedonian Question" (by Maria Nystazopoulou-Pelekidou)
HomeAbout HR-NetNewsWeb SitesDocumentsOnline HelpUsage InformationContact us
Thursday, 12 December 2019
 
News
  Latest News (All)
     From Greece
     From Cyprus
     From Europe
     From Balkans
     From Turkey
     From USA
  Announcements
  World Press
  News Archives
Web Sites
  Hosted
  Mirrored
  Interesting Nodes
Documents
  Special Topics
  Treaties, Conventions
  Constitutions
  U.S. Agencies
  Cyprus Problem
  Other
Services
  Personal NewsPaper
  Greek Fonts
  Tools
  F.A.Q.
 

RFE/RL Newsline, Vol. 4, No. 79, 00-04-20

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty: Newsline Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty <http://www.rferl.org>

RFE/RL NEWSLINE

Vol. 4, No. 79, 20 April 2000


CONTENTS

[A] TRANSCAUCASUS AND CENTRAL ASIA

  • [01] SIX DETAINEES RELEASED IN KARABAKH
  • [02] KAZAKHSTAN'S PRESIDENT SAYS POLICE RESORT TO TORTURE
  • [03] KAZAKHSTAN AGREES TO EXPORT MORE OIL VIA RUSSIA
  • [04] KYRGYZ SECURITY OFFICIAL DENIES THAT KULOV WILL BE RELEASED
  • [05] MORE ISLAMISTS ARRESTED IN TAJIKISTAN
  • [06] EBRD SUSPENDS LOANS TO TURKMEN GOVERNMENT

  • [B] SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

  • [07] CLARK: NATO READY FOR SERBIAN 'GAMES'
  • [08] SERBIAN OPPOSITION WANTS 'ASPHALT FOR DEMOCRACY'
  • [09] OPPOSITION WALKS OUT OF VOJVODINA ASSEMBLY
  • [10] PRIVATIZATION COMMISSION FOR MONTENEGRO?
  • [11] KOSOVAR LEADERS APPEAL FOR END TO HATE
  • [12] EU'S PATTEN WARNS BOSNIA
  • [13] MIXED RESULTS ON BOSNIAN JOINT CABINET
  • [14] CROATIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER WANTS END TO PASALIC IMMUNITY
  • [15] CROATIA'S SPLITSKA BANKA SOLD
  • [16] OPPOSITION LEADER CLAIMS GENERAL PACEPA 'REACTIVATED' IN
  • [17] ROMANIAN LOCAL ELECTION CAMPAIGN STARTS OFF
  • [18] ROMANIAN STUDENTS EMULATE MOLDOVAN NEIGHBORS
  • [19] MOLDOVAN PREMIER MEETS PROTESTING STUDENTS
  • [20] IMF SUSPENDS LENDING TO MOLDOVA
  • [21] BULGARIA SHATTERED BY CORRUPTION SCANDAL
  • [22] BULGARIAN EU NEGOTIATOR SEES 2007 AS 'TARGET DATE'
  • [23] EU APPROVES LOAN FOR BULGARIA'S KOZLODUY

  • [C] END NOTE

  • [24] BALKANS ON THEIR WAY TOWARD EUROPEAN INTEGRATION?

  • [A] TRANSCAUCASUS AND CENTRAL ASIA

    [01] SIX DETAINEES RELEASED IN KARABAKH

    Six persons taken into

    custody last month on suspicion of involvement in the 22

    March bid to assassinate Arkadii Ghukasian, president of the

    unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, have been released,

    Noyan Tapan reported on 20 April. The six have given written

    assurances that they will not leave the country. LF

    [02] KAZAKHSTAN'S PRESIDENT SAYS POLICE RESORT TO TORTURE

    Speaking in Astana on 19 April, Nursultan Nazarbaev accused

    Kazakhstan's police and law enforcement agencies of

    incompetence and of resorting to "sadistic" torture to

    extract confessions of guilt from arrested persons. Nazarbaev

    attributed the rising crime rate in Kazakhstan to increasing

    unemployment and declining living standards. He deplored the

    fact that last year one-third of all serious crimes remained

    unsolved. LF

    [03] KAZAKHSTAN AGREES TO EXPORT MORE OIL VIA RUSSIA

    Russian Fuel

    and Energy Minister Viktor Kalyuzhnii and Kazakhstan's

    Energy, Industry, and Trade Minister Vladimir Shkolnik signed

    an agreement in Moscow on 19 April whereby Russia will allow

    Kazakhstan to increase by 3 million tons the amount of oil it

    exports this year via Russian pipelines, Interfax reported.

    Two million tons of that amount will be exported via the

    newly-completed pipeline from Makhachkala to Novorossiisk

    bypassing Chechnya, and the remaining 1 million tons via the

    Atyrau-Samara pipeline (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 11 and 13

    April 2000). Also on 19 April, Nurlan Balghymbaev, head of

    Kazakhstan's state oil company, told a news conference in

    Atyrau that the cabinet will probably reject a proposal by

    the Customs Committee to impose an export duty of 15 euros

    ($14.4) per ton on exports of crude oil. LF

    [04] KYRGYZ SECURITY OFFICIAL DENIES THAT KULOV WILL BE RELEASED

    Deputy National Security Minister Boris Poluektov said in

    Bishkek on 20 April that rumors of opposition Ar-Namys party

    chairman Feliks Kulov's imminent release from pretrial

    detention are groundless, Interfax reported. Meeting on 16

    April with Kyrgyz President Askar Akaev, U.S. Secretary of

    State Madeleine Albright had called for Kulov's release (see

    "RFE/RL Newsline," 17 April 2000). Poluektov said that Kulov

    has been charged with abuse of office and will also be

    charged with the illegal sale of 500 tons of alcohol. He

    added that there is "incontrovertible evidence" of Kulov's

    involvement in that crime. Other Kyrgyz security officials

    have rejected Kulov's attempts to demonstrate that the

    charges against him are fabricated (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 18

    April 2000). LF

    [05] MORE ISLAMISTS ARRESTED IN TAJIKISTAN

    Four more members of

    the banned Hizb-ut-Tahrir Muslim party have been detained in

    Tajikistan's northern Leninabad Oblast, Interfax reported on

    19 April. The four men are accused of spreading subversive

    literature calling for the overthrow of the country's

    leadership. Their arrest raises to over 50 the number of

    members of that organization detained in Tajikistan since the

    beginning of the year. According to "Nezavisimaya gazeta" on

    15 April, members of Hizb-ut-Tahrir began appearing in

    northern Tajikistan in the late summer of 1999. The

    organization's program is broadly similar to that of the

    Movement for the Islamic Renaissance of Uzbekistan, whose

    members were accused of the February 1999 car bombings in

    Tashkent, the paper notes. LF

    [06] EBRD SUSPENDS LOANS TO TURKMEN GOVERNMENT

    In a statement

    issued in London on 18 April, the European Bank for

    Reconstruction and Development said it will no longer advance

    loans to Turkmenistan's public sector because of that

    country's lack of progress towards democratization or market

    reform, Reuters reported. EBRD First Vice President Charles

    Frank said that failure "suggests that the government of

    Turkmenistan is not committed to one of the basic principles

    upon which the EBRD is founded." The statement said that the

    bank will continue to provide funding for private sector

    programs in Turkmenistan. The EBRD has signed five projects

    in Turkmenistan worth a total of $208.2 million. On 19 April,

    Turkmenistan's President Saparmurat Niyazov criticized the

    EBRD's decision. Niyazov had refused earlier this week to

    meet with an EBRD delegation, according to the "Financial

    Times" of 19 April. LF


    [B] SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

    [07] CLARK: NATO READY FOR SERBIAN 'GAMES'

    NATO'S supreme

    commander in Europe, General Wesley Clark, said in Budapest

    on 19 April that "we're watching very closely [Yugoslav

    President Slobodan] Milosevic...we know he's fought four wars

    in a decade.... There are always 'games' under way. What

    comes of those depends very much on a number of

    circumstances, but he should clearly understand that NATO is

    capable of handling any challenge down there." Clark also

    warned ethnic Albanians who might try to provoke incidents in

    southwestern Serbia in hopes of drawing NATO into a conflict

    in the area. "NATO doesn't support and will not permit the

    export of violence from [Kosova] into southern Serbia,"

    Reuters quoted him as saying. Clark stressed that the

    Atlantic alliance's 1999 campaign was a necessity: "In

    assessing this, you have to say what would have happened if

    the NATO air campaign hadn't been conducted. I think you

    would have had a region-wide tragedy and a situation of

    substantial instability," he concluded. PM

    [08] SERBIAN OPPOSITION WANTS 'ASPHALT FOR DEMOCRACY'

    Mayor Zoran

    Zivkovic of Nis told Reuters on 19 April that he wants the EU

    to build on the success of last winter's Oil for Democracy

    program by providing $1.45 million to cover one-third of the

    costs for bitumen to improve 270 km of damaged roads. In

    Belgrade, representatives of the G-17 group of economists

    also endorsed the proposal. The purpose of both projects is

    to show ordinary Serbs that the opposition can deliver help

    from abroad. PM

    [09] OPPOSITION WALKS OUT OF VOJVODINA ASSEMBLY

    Opposition

    legislators left the provincial assembly in Novi Sad on 19

    April after deputies from the government parties refused to

    consider opposition proposals for topics to be added to the

    legislative agenda. The topics included calling elections at

    all levels, holding a roundtable on election rules, ending

    repression against citizens, and setting up a parliamentary

    commission to investigate recent incidents in Zrenjanin,

    RFE/RL's South Slavic Service reported (see "RFE/RL

    Newsline," 7 April 2000). PM

    [10] PRIVATIZATION COMMISSION FOR MONTENEGRO?

    The legislature in

    Podgorica on 19 April discussed a Social Democratic proposal

    to set up a commission to review the privatization process.

    Representatives of several opposition parties expressed

    doubts that such a commission would be effective. Liberal

    legislators said that the proposal should be withdrawn

    because the commission would have no real authority and would

    become a farce, "Danas" reported. "The Los Angeles Times"

    wrote that many friends of President Milo Djukanovic are

    doing well under a system of "crony capitalism" at a time

    when the U.S. and EU help fund Djukanovic's government. The

    article suggested that Dragan Brkovic is about to profit

    handsomely from the privatization of the KAP aluminum

    concern. Brkovic has reportedly done several important favors

    for Djukanovic and his government, including providing luxury

    apartments and offices, the Los Angeles daily added. PM

    [11] KOSOVAR LEADERS APPEAL FOR END TO HATE

    Ethnic Albanian

    leaders Hashim Thaci, Ibrahim Rugova, Rexhep Qosja, and

    Mahmut Bakalli joined Serbian Orthodox Archbishop Artemije,

    Father Sava, and Rada Trajkovic in signing an appeal to all

    people in Kosova in Prishtina on 19 April. The signatories

    called for an end to hatred and the development of an

    atmosphere of tolerance. They urged people to direct their

    efforts toward a better future for everyone in the province.

    Meanwhile, in Gjilan and Rahovec, UN civilian authorities

    began a painstaking process of registering all citizens.

    Officials hope to identify citizens--as opposed to recent

    arrivals from Albania and Serbia--and issue them appropriate

    documents. PM

    [12] EU'S PATTEN WARNS BOSNIA

    EU External Relations Commissioner

    Chris Patten said in Sarajevo on 19 April that there will not

    be another donors' conference for Bosnia-Herzegovina until it

    introduces essential reforms. "It would not be very sensible

    to have a donors' conference unless things appear to be going

    very well, because it would limit the enthusiasm of donors to

    contribute. I think what we would like to see is absolutely

    clear, politically and economically, in terms of [joint]

    institution building, and in terms of the economic reforms,

    like a transparent privatization process," Reuters reported.

    Representatives of the international community have long

    chastised nationalist politicians for holding up reforms and

    fostering corruption. PM

    [13] MIXED RESULTS ON BOSNIAN JOINT CABINET

    Croatian and Muslim

    leaders were unable to agree on from which of those two

    ethnic groups the new joint foreign minister will come,

    RFE/RL's South Slavic Service reported from Sarajevo on 19

    April. As a result, the joint presidency was unable to select

    a prime minister as well, a Serbian spokesman said. Shortly

    after that meeting, presidency officials announced that the

    prime minister, when elected, will be a Serb. Under new

    legislation, there will be only one prime minister instead of

    the previous two co-prime ministers. PM

    [14] CROATIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER WANTS END TO PASALIC IMMUNITY

    Zlatko Tomcic said in Zagreb on 19 April that the parliament

    will soon begin discussing lifting parliamentary immunity for

    Ivic Pasalic in conjunction with the "Vecernji list" affair

    (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 19 April 2000). Vladimir Seks, who is

    a leader of the Croatian Democratic Community (HDZ), to which

    Pasalic belongs, called the investigation "amoral and

    illegal." He added that it constitutes an effort to

    "criminalize the late President Franjo Tudjman," "Vecernji

    list" reported. "Jutarnji list" published the results of a

    public opinion poll, in which 56 percent of the respondents

    said that they believe Pasalic is guilty of wrongdoing in the

    privatization of the mass-circulation daily during the HDZ's

    rule. Only 20 percent of the respondents did not believe the

    charges. PM

    [15] CROATIA'S SPLITSKA BANKA SOLD

    The government on 19 April

    approved the sale of Splitska Banka to the Milan-based

    UniCredito Italiano for $46 million. The move is "an

    important part of efforts to reinvigorate the Croatian

    economy" in the wake of the collapse of several banks, the

    "Financial Times" reported. On 6 April, the government issued

    $11.1 million worth of state bonds for 15 banks facing

    liquidity problems. The main beneficiary is Istarska Banka.

    Of the other two banks whose privatization began at the same

    time as Splitska's in 1999, Privredna Banka Zagreb has

    already been sold to the Banca Commerciale Italiana, while

    the Bayerische Landesbank is the leading contender to acquire

    Rijecka Banka. PM

    [16] OPPOSITION LEADER CLAIMS GENERAL PACEPA 'REACTIVATED' IN

    ROMANIA

    The parliamentary commission supervising the

    activity of the Romanian Information Service (SRI) has

    summoned Director Catalin Harnagea to testify on the alleged

    "reactivating" of master-spy General Ion Mihai Pacepa by

    presidential order, Mediafax reported. Opposition Party of

    Social Democracy in Romania (PDSR) First Deputy Chairman

    Adrian Nastase made the claim during a visit to China. He

    said that Pacepa, whose death sentence passed by the

    communist regime was quashed in June 1999, is the person

    behind the name General Petre Ion Gavrilescu, who was

    recently reintegrated into the SRI on the order of President

    Emil Constantinescu. George Serban, former head of the

    parliamentary supervisory commission, dismissed the

    allegation, saying it was made in China as part of the PDSR

    effort to enlist Chinese financial backing of its 2000

    electoral campaign "as was the case of the previous

    elections." MS

    [17] ROMANIAN LOCAL ELECTION CAMPAIGN STARTS OFF

    Campaigning for

    local elections officially began on 20 April and will last 45

    days. The first round of the elections will take place on 4

    June. Peter Kovacs Eckstein, who is minister in charge of

    national minority problems, has been chosen by the Hungarian

    Democratic Federation of Romania as its mayoral candidate in

    Cluj, Mediafax reported. Kovacs Eckstein said he is

    "optimistic," though he does not believe he will be able to

    defeat incumbent nationalist Mayor Gheorghe Funar. MS

    [18] ROMANIAN STUDENTS EMULATE MOLDOVAN NEIGHBORS

    Some 1,500

    students clashed in Iasi, capital of Moldavia, with police

    forces on 19 April, Reuters reported. They were demanding

    cheaper rail travel and higher tuition grants. A spokesman

    for the demonstrators said the protest was not related to

    demonstrations by peers in neighboring Moldova (see below),

    but students in several Romanian cities marched in support of

    their Moldovan colleagues and in protest against the clashes

    there. MS

    [19] MOLDOVAN PREMIER MEETS PROTESTING STUDENTS

    Prime Minister

    Dumitru Braghis on 19 April met with representatives of the

    students, who continued their protest in Chisinau for a third

    day. He said the government had accepted their demand that

    the free use of public transportation be restored "at least

    until September," when scholarships are due to be increased

    by 50 percent, RFE/RL's Chisinau bureau reported. Braghis

    also said that the demonstrators included "provocateurs" who

    had nothing to do with the students' demands and who incited

    violence. Meanwhile, skirmishes between police and

    demonstrators continued in central Chisinau, as students

    demanded the liberation of their detained colleagues. The

    authorities say all those detained had been set free.

    Romanian Radio announced on 20 April that the students were

    renewing their protests in the Moldovan capital. MS

    [20] IMF SUSPENDS LENDING TO MOLDOVA

    The IMF has suspended

    lending to Moldova because the parliament has rejected

    legislation that would have allowed the privatization of the

    country's wine and tobacco industries, AP reported on 19

    April. Hassan al-Atrash, the IMF representative in Chisinau,

    said the fund might reconsider its position by the end of the

    year, but that its conditions for resuming lending will not

    change. Premier Braghis one day earlier announced that the

    government will not resign. He said on 19 April that the

    IMF's decision will necessitate adjustments in the 2000

    budget, which was drawn up on the assumption that the IMF and

    other loans will finance a large part of the budget deficit.

    MS

    [21] BULGARIA SHATTERED BY CORRUPTION SCANDAL

    President Petar

    Stoyanov on 19 April pledged to support Prime Minster Ivan

    Kostov's struggle against corruption but urged him to act

    decisively against corruption among senior officials.

    Stoyanov's remarks came after governmental spokesman Mihail

    Mihailov was forced to resign on 18 April after being accused

    by a trade union leader of accepting a $10,000 bribe from a

    businessman. Mihailov denies the charge and says he has

    resigned to devote his time to clearing his name. Former

    Interior Minister Bogomil Bonev, whom Kostov sacked in

    December 1999, accused the premier of failing to react to his

    ministry's reports on graft among top officials. The

    opposition Socialist Party announced it will move a no-

    confidence vote in the cabinet, Reuters and AP reported.

    [22] BULGARIAN EU NEGOTIATOR SEES 2007 AS 'TARGET DATE'

    Bulgaria's chief negotiator with the EU, Alexander Bozhkov,

    on 19 April said his country will be ready to join the EU by

    2007, but problems on both sides could stretch the

    negotiations. In an interview with Reuters, Bozhkov said

    Bulgaria must have "an internal timetable" to keep the

    process "under necessary pressure," but added that even if

    that succeeds, obstacles will still have to be surmounted.

    Among those, he mentioned the need for the EU to revise its

    agricultural policy by 2003. MS

    [23] EU APPROVES LOAN FOR BULGARIA'S KOZLODUY

    The EU Commission

    on 18 April approved a 212.5 million euro ($201.8 million)

    loan to help Bulgaria upgrade two 1,000 megawatt reactors at

    the Kozloduy nuclear plant, Reuters reported. Bulgaria agreed

    to close down the four oldest 440-megawatt reactors at the

    plant before starting accession talks with the EU last month.

    The modernized reactors are to be shut down no later than

    2006, according to the agreement with the EU. MS


    [C] END NOTE

    [24] BALKANS ON THEIR WAY TOWARD EUROPEAN INTEGRATION?

    By Fabian Schmidt

    Over the last 10 years, the Western approach towards the

    Balkans has changed dramatically from ignorance through

    involvement to advocating integration. It now remains to be

    seen whether the EU will follow through on bringing

    Southeastern Europe into the structures increasingly

    integrating the rest of the continent.

    In the early 1990s, most Western countries failed to

    appreciate that Yugoslavia was going through a process of

    disintegration. The Western fear of setting a precedent for

    the further disintegration of the former Soviet Union or

    other post-communist countries came to shape public opinion--

    and above all the views of many leaders--more than the

    developments on the ground. The result was that many Western

    governments failed to grasp what was going on in the Balkans

    and on that they let their policies be heavily swayed by

    domestic concerns.

    It took the EU (then EC) over half a year after Yugoslav

    President Slobodan Milosevic launched his wars in Slovenia

    and Croatia--and a major refugee crisis--to understand that

    Yugoslavia had ceased to exist, and to recognize the

    independence of most of its former republics. But it took

    different countries different lengths of time to draw the

    consequences from the disintegration process and from the

    wars.

    After the shelling of Vukovar and Dubrovnik in 1991,

    German and Austrian public opinion tended to be more friendly

    to Croatia and Slovenia, partly because of the relatively

    widespread perception that Belgrade had started the war.

    Another factor was the appearance of hundreds of thousands of

    refugees on the Germans' and Austrians' doorsteps, as well as

    the long-standing contacts to the former Yugoslavia--thanks

    to a large Yugoslav immigrant community and to Yugoslavia's

    earlier popularity as a holiday destination--provided a

    strong feeling of proximity and involvement.

    But in other countries, such as Britain and France, it

    took a change of the political generation and a change of

    government to appreciate that the core problem of the Balkan

    wars was Milosevic's lust for power. The change of attitude

    was triggered by months of horrific television images and

    press reports of the siege of Sarajevo and by the frustration

    from being unable to stop ethnic cleansing and genocide.

    After four years of fruitless negotiations under

    international mediation, hundreds of broken ceasefires, and a

    hostage crisis involving Serbs taking UN troops prisoner, the

    1995 Dayton agreement marked a turning point in the

    international approach. It showed that when dealing with

    tough-minded Balkan politicians, a credible threat of force

    can make them more reasonable.

    Since Europe at the time was unable to conceive or carry

    out such a policy and its own mediation efforts had failed,

    the U.S. was crucial in bringing the Europeans together

    behind a common strategy. The deployment of a NATO-led

    international peacekeeping force that was able to enforce

    peace marked the end of the Bosnian war.

    The post-conflict situation proved to be a still more

    complex matter. Even though the international community gave

    large amounts of humanitarian and reconstruction assistance

    to Bosnia, the country now faces a deep economic crisis,

    triggered by protectionist policies, communist economic

    legacies, and by an overwhelmingly non-transparent and often

    corrupt bureaucracy.

    The negotiation process leading to the February 1999

    Rambouillet talks and the subsequent Kosova war clearly

    marked the change of western policies towards the region.

    Albeit under U.S. leadership, the European countries united

    behind a common goal and strategy in a comparably short time.

    After the war, Europe took charge of the largest part of the

    reconstruction and institution-building effort.

    Furthermore, the Kosova war gave the essential impulse

    for a new regional approach on the part of the EU, aiming at

    integrating all of Southeastern Europe. And the EU's envoy on

    foreign and security policy, Javier Solana, is in charge of

    shaping that policy.

    To date, however, Solana has not been able to present

    great results. The EU's main mechanism for the region is the

    Stability Pact for Southeastern Europe under the chair of

    Bodo Hombach. But the Stability Pact has no resources of its

    own; it merely keeps the region on the EU's agenda. It also

    can serve as a clearing house to promote cross-border

    cooperation and infrastructure development. The key impulse

    for integration must come, however, through the Stabilization

    and Association agreements that the EU is currently

    negotiating. With the exception of Bosnia-Herzegovina,

    Serbia, Montenegro, and Kosova, all entities in the region

    are involved in the process of concluding such agreements.

    The negotiations with Macedonia are likely to conclude

    by the end of this year. Talks with Croatia have just begun,

    and the country will have to introduce austerity measures to

    get the process going. Albania has some possibilities, and

    two weeks ago presented a status report on its internal

    reforms to the EU. If local elections scheduled for October

    proceed peacefully, it is likely that Albania will start

    negotiations by the end of the year. For Bosnia no such

    agreement is in sight, because the leaderships of the two

    entities have failed to agree on the joint implementation of

    reforms.

    Unlike many Central European and Baltic countries, these

    new candidates will draw up action plans jointly with the EU.

    Thus the countries will have clearer guidelines as to where

    the reforms must be going and what they have to implement.

    For its part, the EU will apply "conditionality" to the

    integration process, which means that the process comes to a

    halt if the candidates fail to deliver on their promises. But

    the arrangement gives the candidates some security in not

    being left alone or lacking guidelines for their policies.

    But not only the candidates will have to deliver on

    their promises--the EU must make good on its commitment to

    integrating them. Even though the EU supports regional and

    cross-border cooperation, many candidates will paradoxically

    have to give up free-trade agreements that are not in line

    with EU standards. (The agreements between the Czech Republic

    and Slovakia are a case in point.) Indeed, the EU wants the

    candidates to apply the "acquis communitaire"--the set of

    rules and standards for EU integration--among themselves

    already before integration.

    The idea is that regional cooperation between candidates

    should not cause problems during their subsequent EU

    integration. But many such bilateral agreements--especially

    where free trade in agricultural products is concerned--are

    in contradiction to protectionist EU policies. A first step

    in a more open direction, however, is the willingness of the

    EU to unilaterally open its markets to industrial products

    from these countries. The most important is probably textile

    production, which makes up about 45 percent of Macedonia's

    exports, for example.

    In the end, the sincerity of the EU's approach to the

    economically fragile states of Southeastern Europe will be

    measured in how far it opens its markets and gives policy

    guidelines in a spirit of sincere and open partnership.

    The author is an analyst of Albanian and former Yugoslav

    affairs at Munich's Suedost-Institut.

    20-04-00


    Reprinted with permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
    URL: http://www.rferl.org


    Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty: Newsline Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
    Back to Top
    Copyright 1995-2016 HR-Net (Hellenic Resources Network). An HRI Project.
    All Rights Reserved.

    HTML by the HR-Net Group / Hellenic Resources Institute, Inc.
    rferl2html v1.01 run on Thursday, 20 April 2000 - 14:33:09 UTC