State Secretary Dovžan at CEI virtual meeting on regional cooperation during COVID-19 pandemic
State Secretary Gašper Dovžan represented Slovenia at the virtual meeting of CEI Heads of Government on behalf of Prime Minister Janez Janša and Foreign Minister Dr Anže Logar, who had previously scheduled commitments. The 31st CEI Summit focused on a debate about the situation, measures, and regional cooperation during the COVID-19 pandemic.
State Secretary Dovžan informed the participants of Slovenia’s successful measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, adding that an official end to coronavirus epidemic was declared on the basis of epidemiological indicators showing that the spread of the virus is losing intensity. However, both the general and specific measures to prevent the spread of the virus remain in effect. The State Secretary went on to inform the participants that the quarantine regime has been changed: quarantine is no longer required for permanent or temporary EU residents showing no symptoms of infection. The regime will remain in place for people from third countries.
With the best epidemiological situation in Europe, Slovenia was able to opt for a gradual relaxation of measures, State Secretary Dovžan explained. However, Slovenia supports European solidarity, the integrity of the Single Market, the coordinated easing of restrictions, and the restart of the European economy.
Slovenia is a champion of regional cooperation, mutual assistance and transfer of know-how during the pandemic, including bilateral cooperation. In a crisis, no distant country can replace the partnership between neighbours and the region. The State Secretary expressed thanks for the excellent collaboration between Slovenia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, and North Macedonia in the first weeks of the epidemic, when the countries in the region agreed to set up humanitarian corridors that helped people return home and get goods on their way to end consumers.
Today’s virtual meeting was organised by the Montenegrin CEI Presidency in cooperation with the WHO Regional Office for Europe, the European Commission, and the EBRD. In addition to the host, the Prime Minister of Montenegro, the meeting was attended by seven prime ministers, three deputy prime ministers, four foreign ministers, and three state secretaries, CEI Secretary General Roberto Antonione, Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Olivér Várhelyi, President of the EBRD Suma Chakrabarti, and WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Henri P. Kluge.
The CEI meeting will produce a joint statement to be published on the CEI website.