The first Conference for Montenegro’s honorary consuls was held earlier today in Podgorica, launched by President of Montenegro Filip Vujanović and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Igor Lukšić.
President of Montenegro Filip Vujanović thanked the honorary consuls for their dedication in representing Montenegro and helping its economic, cultural, and other promotion. He also commended their willingness to contribute to the enhancement of bilateral relations between Montenegro and their respective countries. The President has said that the honorary consuls’ mission merits great respect, as they have done plenty to improve bilateral relations and contributed to improved economic ties and promotion of Montenegro in the world. I understand your mission as a strong diplomatic mission of economic ambassadors determined to help the economic and cultural development of Montenegro, and in that sense I extend to you my great respect for your hitherto activities in securing, first of all, the necessary preconditions for pursuing this mission as well as for pursuing other activities that contribute to Montenegro’s promotion, the President has said. He said he was certain that the consuls will continue further improving their partnership with the Ministry, with the view to ensuring a better quality of life of our citizens, new investments, and development of overall relations.
In his address, Minister Lukšić voiced his satisfaction regarding the conference and welcomed the consuls, noting that Montenegro will try to bring the consuls closer to Montenegro’s history, culture, beauty, and values. “The purpose of this gathering, which we intend to make a tradition, is to get to know each other better; to establish adequate mechanisms of cooperation and a fast-track communication channel between us; to brief you on the latest in Montenegro's foreign policy, economy and investment opportunities; and equally important, to answer any questions you may have on issues pertinent to your work in the capacity of honorary consuls of Montenegro in countries around the globe,” Mr Lukšić has said.
Mr Lukšić added that honorary consuls’ activities represent an added value to the relations of Montenegro in the countries where we do not have other diplomatic representations and underlined that honorary consuls are important promoters of our economic and cultural interests.
Deputy Prime Minister took the opportunity to introduce the consuls to Montenegro’s foreign policy priorities and underlined that Montenegro is pursuing full-fledged membership of the European Union and NATO. As one of the key priorities, Mr Lukšić underlined the need to establish a favourable business and investment environment, as a precondition for speedier growth and development.
On the first day of the conference, the honorary consuls were addressed by Minister of Economy Vladimir Kavarić, Minister of Sustainable Development and Tourism Branimir Gvozdenović, and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Petar Ivanović.
Minister Gvozdenović gave a presentation entitled “Montenegro – investment, projects, opportunities,” in which he informed the consuls about investment potentials in Montenegro. He noted Montenegro is a regional leader when it comes to FDI. “We are focused on continuous monitoring of FDI growth and we take notice of the assessments and suggestions by foreign investors in Montenegro with the view to making it easier for them to complete their projects and to attracting new investors,” Mr Gvozdenović has said.
Ministers of economy and agriculture informed the consuls about the investment opportunities in their respective areas. In that regard, they informed them about the plans for utilising the energy potentials, such as the under-sea energy cable between Montenegro and Italy, Trans-Adriatic and Adriatic-Ionian gas pipelines, and potentials in renewable energy harvesting. They also presented opportunities in agriculture, such as organic production, wood processing, drinkable water, and other important areas.
The conference participants agreed to continue cooperating with Montenegro’s institutions, through the Ministry, towards ensuring the best possible promotion of Montenegro as an attractive tourism and investment destination.
The honorary consuls commended the first conference. The next one is planned for next year.
This year, out of 30 honorary consuls, 23 of them who represent Montenegro in 19 countries participated at the conference.
Speech of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration at Conference of Honorary Consuls, Podgorica 28-29, March, 2014.