Over the past thirteen years, the European Union represented by the Delegation of the European Union to BiH has provided great support to the BiH judiciary.
Since 2004, the EU, as a key donor, has provided support to the development of a modern BiH judiciary with a focus on the use of information and communication technologies and performance management which have helped in providing better, faster and more transparent services to citizens.
The process of modernisation of the BiH judiciary undertaken by the High Judicial and Prosecutorial Council of BiH from its inception was made one of its top priorities.
Introducing new procedures and tools supported by IT solutions made a remarkable change in the way how the judiciary operates today, compared to the situation of 2004 and 2005. The EU assistance provided during this period encompassed development of the country-wide communication network, supply of IT equipment to courts and prosecutor’s offices and development of the key information systems used daily by the judiciary and citizens including the Case Management System (CMS/TCMS), web portal and on-line services.
The EU has also recognised the negative effects of inadequate infrastructure for the efficient operation of courts and prosecutor’s offices and therefore provided about EUR 19 million of IPA funds for the (re)construction of judicial and prosecutorial premises. Twenty judicial institutions all over Bosnia and Herzegovina are being constructed, modernised and renovated. In addition, the EU supported the adaptation and equipping of eleven courts in line with witness protection standards.
As a part of the broad-justice sector support provided by the EU in the recent years, the BiH judiciary’s capacity for processing war crimes cases is being strengthened with about EUR 15 million of IPA assistance, enabling it to process war crime cases more effectively.
Overall, the European Union remains focused and responsive to the most prominent needs of the BiH judiciary in tackling existing and imminent challenges. The partnership between the Delegation of the European Union to BiH and the HJPC remains a vital part of the efforts for betterment of the BiH judiciary and its ability to fulfil the requirements for EU accession in the coming years.