CEI message on recent floods in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia
The Austrian CEI Presidency as well as the CEI Secretariat express their deep sympathy and heart-felt solidarity to the communities and Governments of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia, affected by recent devastating floods and extraordinary damage.
The CEI is ready to take concrete actions to assist its three member countries in their recovery by exploiting its instruments and funds as well as its experience in managing EU funded projects. The modalities will be examined with the three affected countries directly.
The CEI is already promoting activities aimed at strengthening management capacities in order to counter dry and wet anomalies and hydrological risks.
Through the CEI Fund at the EBRD, contributed by Italy, the CEI is supporting two project studies aimed at improving the environmental and hydro-meteorological monitoring and disaster prevention capacity in the Drina river basin, targeting Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Serbia. Coordinated by the Regional Environmental Protections Agency of Emilia Romagna (ARPA EMR, Italy), in cooperation with the target countries, the projects focus on water management, risk reduction from natural events as well as air and water quality.
The CEI is also involved in a project proposal aimed at streamlining the understanding of interrelations between the meteorological, hydrological and socio-ecological aspects of droughts and floods, thus setting the grounds for the development of early warning systems based on probabilistic hydro-meteorological assessments.
Based on these actions, follow-up initiatives can be developed as a further CEI contribution to the recovery of the affected areas.
On the occasion of the last meeting of the EU Foreign Ministers in Brussels, the Austrian Federal Minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, Sebastian Kurz, called for swift action by the European Union in order to provide support and alleviate the consequences of the recent floods in the Western Balkan countries and Croatia.