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16 11.10.

First Governing Board meeting: Interview with Mrs. Svetlana Vukovic (Montenegro)

Mrs. Svetlana Vukovic  is Director of Human Resource Management Authority (HRMA) of Montenegro and ReSPA Governing Board member at Senior Official level

Mrs. Svetlana Vukovic is Director of Human Resource Management Authority (HRMA) of Montenegro and ReSPA Governing Board member at Senior Official level

Mrs. Vukovic, what is your feedback and reaction to the first First Governing Board (GB) meetings that were held in Danilovgrad on September 23 and 24, as important milestone meetings for ReSPA’s future?

The ReSPA project is one of the most important projects in the Western Balkans, initiated in order to improve regional cooperation in the area of public administration, to strengthen administrative capacities and to develop human resources in accordance with the principles of European administration.

ReSPA is the first regional organisation to be based in Montenegro. In my opinion, this is a clear sign that the European Union has recognised Montenegro for EU membership. Symbolically enough, just one day before the official ReSPA Opening ceremony on 11 November, Montenegro will hopefully receive EU candidate status and embark on the long but positive process of EU membership.

At its first meetings held on 23 and 24 September 2010 in Danilovgrad, the Governing Board adopted important resolutions, such as the Resolution on the adoption of the Rules of Procedure for the ReSPA Governing Board, the Resolution on the adoption of the ReSPA Financial Regulations and Staff Regulations, the Resolution on the appointment of the nominated Director, the Resolution approving financial transactions from the ReSPA members’ contributions necessary for the operational costs during the transitional period and many other important resolutions which gave GB members at operational level the green light to start with ReSPA’s institutionalisation.

The GB members at Ministerial level met for the first time at ReSPA’s premises and their presence gave important political support for our future plans and ReSPA’s future in general.

The appointment of ReSPA’s Director Mr. Suad Musič was approved at the GB meeting and paved the way for the selection of ReSPA staff in the near future.

In your opinion, what is the importance of the Governing Board meetings in general?

The Human Resource Management Authority was established in 2004 and has since become a successful national institution for the training of civil servants of Montenegro, among other things. HRMA was appointed by the Government of Montenegro to successfully coordinate all activities for the establishment of ReSPA within Montenegro, using all human and material potential. Now all activities related to GB meetings are implemented in cooperation with EIPA, ReSPA’s Secretariat.

ReSPA Governing Board members will plan and make decisions for ReSPA’s future in cooperation with ReSPA’s Director, who will implement all activities related to the Second Phase of institutionalisation of ReSPA, whereby ReSPA will become an international institution in the region which will deliver advanced professional training of civil servants from the region and beyond.

What are the advantages of being part of ReSPA’s Governing Board?

The ReSPA project is of significance not only for Montenegro but for the Western Balkans. To remember, the International Agreement establishing ReSPA was signed on  21 November 2008 in Podgorica at Ministerial level by representatives of ReSPA members and in the presence of the European Commission. Five countries (Albania, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia) signed the Agreement that day, while Bosnia and Herzegovina signed the Agreement in July 2009.

The Governing Board is made up of representatives of all full ReSPA members and it will manage the affairs of the institution, which ReSPA’s Director and its staff will implement.

Regular GB meetings will ensure that all activities are coordinated among ReSPA members (including Montenegro), and that the members are kept fully informed of ReSPA activities. The constant cooperation of the countries of the region will allow wider political support for future regional projects. The ReSPA Governing Board has the responsibility to adopt general policy guidelines and the annual business plan for ReSPA, meaning each GB member will have the chance to present the future training and other needs of the public administration of their respective country. In short, it is with great honour that I can say that the Government of Montenegro granted the HRMA and myself this valuable opportunity to represent Montenegro in ReSPA.

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