- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- All Balkan Countries
The European Commission has described Croatia’s progress positively in its annual report, published yesterday.
The progress report, which holds significant sway in the international community, is seen as a barometer of Balkan countries’ development over a 12-month period.
This year’s report revealed that Croatia had made good overall progress, in particular in the fields of judiciary and fundamental rights and in the area covered by the policy chapter on justice, freedom and security, noting that the remaining commitments should be met before accession.
“Good progress has been made in the area of rule of law. New legislation has strengthened the independence of the judiciary and adequate measures were taken to improve its efficiency. Anti-corruption efforts have yielded positive results including in cases of high level corruption,” the report stated.
“New improved laws regarding access to information, conflict of interest and the financing of political activities have been enacted. Progress has been made with the impartial handling of war crimes trials.”
It further noted that Croatia had committed to continue ensuring sustainable results in particular in the fields of judicial and administrative reforms, the fight against corruption, minority rights, refugee return and war crimes.
However, it said the country’s track record of effective handling of corruption cases needed to be further developed and the new preventative legal framework increasing transparency in public procurement, party financing and conflict of interest needed to be fully implemented.
“Further efforts are recommended to continue building a modern, reliable, de-politicized and citizen-oriented public service,” read the report.
In June, Croatia completed its accession talks and it will join the EU on 1 July 2013, the European Commission said on Wednesday.
Donors spent hundreds of thousands of euro building a new museum in Gjirokastra - but the results were questionable and it ultimately closed over an ideological dispute.