Bosnia ready for compromise on trade with Croatia for EU membership

Bosnian authorities are willing to reach a compromise in negotiations with the European Union on the adjustment of the interim trade agreement so that it can be applied to Croatia too, aware that without that Bosnia and Herzegovina cannot apply for EU membership candidate status, Foreign Trade and Economic Relations Minister Mirko Sarovic has said.

In its Monday issue, Dnevni Avaz daily quoted him as saying that the Presidency had asked the Council of Ministers to "redefine and correct" the negotiating position on the adjustment of said agreement. "We are already working on the key steps we should take and on the appointment of a new negotiating team."

Since Croatia joined the EU in July 2013, Bosnia has prevented it from exercising the right to non-duty exports to Bosnia like other EU countries. The European Commission has insisted that Croatia participate in the allocation of earlier agreed quotas on non-duty exports to Bosnia, but Bosnia has refused, claiming this would threaten domestic production, notably the food and farm sectors.

Bosnian officials have insisted that in exchange for the equal treatment of Croatia, the EU should open its market to Bosnian goods such as sugar and wine.

"We'll see if (Brussels') responses to at least some of our demands are to our benefit," Sarovic said, adding that the pace of the negotiations would depend on that.

The aim of the new approach is to ensure the meeting of requirements for EU membership candidate status, which Bosnia plans to apply for by the end of February at the latest. The European Commission has clearly set the alignment of the interim trade agreement as a key requirement.

Last update: Tue, 08/12/2015 - 12:27

More from Croatia

NGO accuses UN health rapporteur of overstepping his authority

"In the name of the family" association has issued a strongly-worded statement criticising UN's special rapporteur...

Wood-rimmed glasses from Croatia gift to Pope for his 80th birthday

Pope Francis, who will celebrate his 80th birthday on 17 December, will be given an unusual present, glasses the...

Croatian 15-year-olds still underperform in PISA survey

Croatian 15-year-olds are still below the average performance in reading, mathematics and science compared with...

Marathon-long session on budget ends, vote may be after 3 days

Croatia's parliament finished a 14-hour long session on a 2017 draft budget shortly after Saturday midnight, and...

High level of ICT integration in Croatian businesses - DZS

As many as 77% of Croatian households and 91% of businesses had access to the Internet in 2016, and in this outgoing...