Joint Conclusions from the High Level Dialogue on the Accession Process of 27 June 2012

The representatives of the executive authorities and the main political parties attended the launch today of the High Level Dialogue on the EU accession Process in Brussels upon the invitation of the European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, Štefan Füle. This new initiative aims to help Bosnia and Herzegovina to move forward in the EU accession process by explaining the requirements and the methodology of accession negotiations and concretely what is expected from Bosnia and Herzegovina in the EU accession process.

The European Commission reiterated that Bosnia and Herzegovina has a clear perspective to become a member of the EU. The European Commission welcomed the recent adoption of the State Aid Law and the Population Census Law as important developments for Bosnia and Herzegovina‘s progress in the EU integration process, but full implementation should be ensured. The European Commission hopes that Bosnia and Herzegovina, as soon as possible, will be able to meet the requirements for the Stabilisation and Association Agreement to come into force and that the country will soon be able to meet the remaining conditions for a credible membership application to the EU, as defined by the Foreign Affairs Council.

In this regard, all participants agreed to a Road Map which, if timely and successfully implemented, could lead the country to submit a credible membership application to the EU before the end of the year.

The authorities and political parties from Bosnia and Herzegovina took note of the deadlines and agreed:

  • To ensure a political agreement on the Sejdic-Finci ruling and to change the Constitution  by November which is one of the essential elements to ensure a satisfactory track record in implementing Bosnia and Herzegovina’s obligations under the SAA/Interim Agreement;

  • On the need to transpose EU legislation to the whole territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina in a harmonised and coordinated manner, and in accordance with the relevant constitutional competencies, as set out by the relevant EU law;

  • To ensure that positions communicated to the EU Institutions, reflect the discussions with all competent Institutions and authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, following effective coordination. A functioning coordination mechanism needs therefore to be put in place;

  • As a follow up to today’s High Level Dialogue on the Accession Process, the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Governments of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, including the Cantons, of Republika Srpska and of the Brčko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina should engage in a dialogue in order to agree on an effective coordination mechanism for engagement with the EU which will enable Bosnia and Herzegovina to come to an agreed position on EU issues so as to speak with one voice and to present a proposal on a Coordination mechanism on EU matters by 31 October 2012;

  • To improve and strengthen the efficient functioning of the administration at all levels of government in order for Bosnia and Herzegovina to be in a position to adopt, implement and enforce the laws and rules of the EU;

  • To ensure that Bosnia and Herzegovina coordinates well and replies no later than 31 October 2012 to the list of questions on selected chapters, which were discussed at today’s meeting as an illustration of the necessary requirements to prepare for the EU accession process- Public Procurement (Chapter 5) and Environment (Chapter 27).

Progress on these issues remains necessary before Bosnia and Herzegovina can expect to progress towards EU accession negotiations. The European Commission stands ready to support Bosnia and Herzegovina’s EU perspective with expertise and financial assistance. The second meeting of the High Level dialogue on the Accession process will be held in November in Sarajevo.





By 31 August:
Proposal to the Parliamentary Assembly to amend the Constitution of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) to make it compliant with the Sejdić/Finci ruling. This is the essential missing element for a Decision of the Council on the entry into force of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA).

1st half of September:

High Level Mission of the European Commission to BiH and mid-term review of this Road Map to prepare the second meeting of the High Level Dialogue on the Accession Process

7 October:
Local Elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina

10 October:
Adoption of the Annual Progress Report by the European Commission on BiH.

By 31 October:
Reply by Bosnia and Herzegovina to the 2 lists of sectoral questions handed over on 27 June (Chapters 5 and 27). Definition of an efficient EU coordination mechanism.

Second meeting of the High Level Dialogue on the Accession Process in Sarajevo.

By 30 November:
Constitution has been amended to make it compliant with the Sejdić/Finci ruling. On the condition that the SAA enters into force: submission of a credible EU membership application.