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EC grants 47 mln euro to support Bosnia's EU integration

EC grants 47 mln euro to support Bosnia's EU integration Author: MPD01605. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic.

SARAJEVO (Bosnia and Herzegovina), December 23 (SeeNews) - The European Commission said on Friday it has adopted the 2016 programme for Bosnia and Herzegovina, granting 47 million euro ($49.1 million) to support the country on its path to EU integration.

The programme follows the enlargement policy "fundamentals first" by focusing on the areas of rule of law and fundamental rights, strengthening democratic institutions, good governance, economic development and competitiveness, the Commission said in a statement.

The new programme builds on the 2014 and 2015 programmes within the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA II), which amounts to at least 165.8 million euro for Bosnia and Herzegovina over the 2014-2017 period.

"The programme will assist Bosnia and Herzegovina's efforts in developing an efficient, professional and transparent civil service, thus building public sector's capacity to deliver services to the country's citizens", the Commission said. "Further assistance will help enhancing the capacities of the parliaments at the different levels of governance across the country in the EU integration process, and will support the strengthening of the  public procurement system."

The EU will also continue funding the International Commission on Missing Persons for the identification of persons still unaccounted for.

Flood protection and integrated flood risk management are further priorities of the programme, as is the implementation of labour market reforms and local development, the Commission said.

Bosnia submitted the application for EU membership in February 2016. Earlier this month, it received the EU's questionnaire, based on which the EU will decide whether the country is ready to join the bloc.

($=0.957898 euro)

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