04/01/2020 PIC SBA

Statement by the PIC SB Ambassadors, joined by the CoE, EUFOR, IMF, NATO HQ Sarajevo, OSCE, Sweden, Switzerland, UN in BiH, and the WB

Following yesterday’s briefing by the UN Resident Coordinator, WHO and IMF representatives on the effects of the COVID-19 crisis on BiH, the Peace Implementation Council Steering Board (PIC SB) reiterates that the International Community will continue to work with all relevant institutions in BiH to provide material and other assistance to BiH to fight COVID-19, which should be managed transparently and responsibly, and with consideration to the greatest need.

The PIC SB supports the positive political statements by BiH politicians advocating cooperation and the need to jointly respond to the COVID-19 crisis, including the recent statement and ongoing coordination effort of the BiH Presidency. The PIC SB fully supports proportional and coordinated measures taken by all levels of authority to address the pandemic and ensure the health and well-being of BIH citizens. It also underlines the need for a more coordinated and forward-looking approach in BiH, also aiming to minimize the socio-economic impact of the crisis.

The PIC SB underlines that the current health crisis in BiH can be effectively addressed if the authorities show unity and good governance, based on respect for the constitutional and legal framework of BiH at all levels, demonstrating respect for the rule of law, transparency and accountability, in the interest of all citizens. Authorities should ensure that all emergency measures are balanced and correspond to the actual demands of the situation for as long as the crisis continues.

BiH authorities should commit to measures that will enhance economic recovery and longer-term fiscal stability. At the same time, it is important that budgets at all levels of authority in BiH are rebalanced to reflect the current priorities.

The PIC SB urges the citizens of BiH to fully respect the temporary measures taken by the authorities to halt the spread of COVID-19, which is key to success in this joint struggle.