Belgrade, 12 April 2021 – Director of Transport Community Permanent Secretariat (TCT) Matej Zakonjšek met today at the TCT Headquarters with the Montenegrin Minister of Capital Investments Mladen Bojanić to discuss progress on the regional transport network and Montenegro’s links with neighboring countries.
“Minister Bojanić expressed support to Transport Community’s efforts to establish joint border crossings. Signing of bilateral border crossing agreements brings numerous benefits to our citizens – improved coordination, removal of unnecessary controls, optimal use of resources and reduction of waiting times. One-stop controls are the most advanced example of regional cooperation that will make travel in Western Balkans easier,” Zakonjšek said. The two interlocutors discussed the establishment of one stop controls on border crossing Dobrakovo/Gostun, the main crossing between Serbia and Montenegro located on the TEN-T Core Network.
“Border crossing agreements need to go hand in hand with infrastructure improvements. Montenegro and Serbia signed an agreement in 2011, but due to lack of capacity, the agreement is still out of operation. Today’s meeting was an opportunity to discuss progress on this issue. Once this issue is resolved, citizens will be able to enjoy benefits of a joint rail border crossing in Bijelo Polje,” Zakonjšek noted.
In addition to border crossing agreement, Transport Community Permanent Secretariat will continue supporting creation of a common regional rail market. Given the small size of the rail market and the inability of individual countries to develop the rail system, the only solution is opening at the regional level. This will create additional incentive for enhancing cooperation between infrastructure managers, but also for the railway undertakings which will be able to compete on the regional and EU level in the future. Mutual recognition of rail documents – operational licence, safety certificate, driver’s licence and vehicle permit – is one of the preconditions for the market opening.
Minister Bojanić updated Zakonjšek on progress on Bar – Boljare motorway construction. The motorway is part of Route 4 of the TEN-T Core Network Section, which has been prioritised under the EU’s Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans. Constant coordination with international partners might provide the necessary impetus to speed up implementation on the most challenging infrastructure project in Montenegro’s history, Director Zakonjšek and Minister Bojanić agreed.