May 23rd 2016
Representation of the European Commission in Croatia,House of Europe, Ulica Augusta Cesarca, Zagreb
The EU and the Balkans are becoming ever strongly interwoven. With Croatia being the newest EU member and Serbia, Albania, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) and Montenegro being candidate countries, the region is connecting more closely with the European Union. Currently suffering from low growth, high unemployment and infrastructure deficits, large-scale investments in sustainable infrastructure projects could enable high benefits in terms of employment, improvement of outdated equipment, interconnection with the EU28 and resource efficiency in the Balkans. At the same time, green investments could help to contribute to the international agreement on climate change achieved in Paris in December 2015. However, the region’s fiscal space to achieve such goals is limited due to existing high public debt and significant deficits. In order to bring the EU and the Balkan countries closer together, a deeper integration into existing and planned EU-wide infrastructures is needed. Therefore, the Global Climate Forum and Germanwatch suggest a “Green Corridor” in the Western Balkans, combining infrastructure investments in sustainable transport, internet broadband and highvoltage electricity transmission.
In this workshop, held at the European Commission, we will discuss options for a “Green Corridor” with stakeholders from governments in the region, the financial sector, industry, civil society and academia.