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Speech in plenary 17th of March on the 2012 comprehensive monitoring report on Croatia

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– Madam President, in less than three months we will have Croatian Members of this Parliament when we start our July session. I think that is an expression of something even bigger than what happens in this plenary, because it is an expression of the fact that Croatia will be a member of the European Union just like everyone else in this Union. That makes the European Union bigger but also more important.

It is a result of the long development in political leadership that has reformed Croatia. It is a membership which changes the situation for Croatians, with new opportunities all over Europe, but it is also changing the overall opportunities in the Western Balkans, with a clear sign that membership is possible for countries and nations which are reforming. I think it is an important task for all of us to ensure that, in doing this, we are not creating new borders in the Western Balkans but new possibilities.

It is also important to underline that now we have common tasks ahead: fighting corruption and organised crime – that is important everywhere, and wherever we find it – and of course ensuring that we can achieve the vitality to our economies that will be a guarantee for future prosperity and opportunities. This is a common task, and I think it is important to see that this is a historic step we are taking. Thanks to all who have contributed to that.