The European Policy Institute published four policy insights in the series “The Potential of the Growth Plan for the Western Balkans – Recommendations for its Implementation”.

The policy insights provide an overview of the Growth Plan, its goals and implementation mechanisms. The authors share their take on the four pillars of the Growth Plan, pointing out specific challenges and giving recommendations on their implementation.

Policy Insight I – The Potential of the New Growth Plan for the Western Balkans

This policy insight evaluates the New Growth Plan, focusing on its strategic pillars aimed at economic integration with the EU, regional integration, fundamental reforms, and increased financial assistance. It highlights the plan’s innovative approaches but also points out limitations, such as insufficient financial resources and the ambitious scope of reforms required. Recommendations relate to implementation priorities, balanced measures across pillars, use of socio-economic indicators to assess progress, and the critical need for a realistic and impact-focused approach to achieve tangible economic growth and integration with the EU.

Policy Insight II – New Growth Plan for The Western Balkans: Solid Foundations, Shaky Extensions

The policy insight focuses on the plan’s four pillars—regional economic integration, EU single market integration, financial assistance, and accelerated reforms and identifies gaps in addressing challenges such as weak institutions and limited market access. The document offers actionable recommendations for improving the plan’s impact, including broadening market integration efforts and increasing financial support to foster sustainable development in the region.

Policy Insight III – The Potential of The Growth Plan For The Western Balkan Countries – Recommendations For Implementation

This policy insight emphasizes the Growth Plan’s potential to enhance regional economic integration and alignment with the EU single market acquis. It identifies the plan’s reliance on the Common Regional Market (CRM) for accelerating EU integration and outlines obstacles such as political will and institutional capacities, private sector competitiveness, and financial strains and human capital quality. Recommendations focus on overcoming these barriers to fully realize the Growth Plan’s objectives, ensuring the Western Balkans’ successful economic convergence with the EU.

Policy Insight IV – The Potential of The Growth Plan for The Western Balkans – Recommendations for Its Implementation and The Role Of Civil Society

This analysis delves into the critical role of civil society in the implementation of the Growth Plan for the Western Balkans. It underscores the necessity for CSOs to not only be consulted during the drafting of national Reform Agendas but also to play a key role in the independent monitoring of the implementation of the reforms. Highlighting the importance of civil society in promoting transparency, accountability, and inclusiveness, the policy insight provides recommendations for ensuring effective CSO engagement thereby enhancing the plan’s overall impact and success in the region.

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