Zagreb, 7 February 2011 – International Conference “Capacity Building on Public Private Partnership in South East Europe” was opened today by Vice Prime Minister of the Government of Republic of Croatia and Minister of Agriculture, Fishery and Rural Development, Petar Čobanković, who drew attention to the importance of this investment model for accelerated growth of Croatia, and the wider region.
Two-day international conference titled “Capacity Building on Public Private Partnership in South East Europe” which opened this morning at the Regent Esplanade Hotel, in Zagreb, was jointly organised by the Agency for Public-Private Partnership, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Team of Specialists on PPPs of the Committee on Economic Cooperation and Integration (CECI).
Welcoming remarks were delivered by Vice Prime Minister of the Government of Republic of Croatia and President of the Agency’s Governing Council, Petar Čobanković, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, Hido Biščević, Chief of the Cooperation and Partnerships Section of the UNECE’s Committee on Economic Cooperation and Integration, Geoffrey Hamilton, and Kamilo Vrana, Director of the Agency.
“Lack of knowledge, and not funding sources, is a key obstacle to successful use of public-private partnership. Given the importance of this funding model for development of strategic projects, mutual cooperation and exchange of acquired knowledge and experiences represent a logical response to the challenge of accelerated regional development,” said Kamilo Vrana, Director of the Agency for Public-Private Partnership.
“The needs for development of state-of-the-art infrastructure go far beyond the financial capacities of South East European Governments, particularly given the present fiscal limitations. Our main objective is to find practical solutions for development of regional infrastructure that would provide for private sector participation with equal risk distribution,” emphasized Hido Bišćević, Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, while opening the Conference.
During the opening session, Vice Prime Minister of the Government of Republic of Croatia, Minister of Agriculture, Fishery and Rural Development, and President of Agency’s Governing Council, Petar Čobanković, stressed the following: “Our wish is to, in cooperation with the Regional Cooperation Council, facilitate exchange of experiences and knowledge within the Southeast Europe PPP Network, preparation of quality cross-border projects and use of the public-private partnership model in the wider region”.
During the Conference, local and foreign experts, as well as representatives of EU Delegation in Zagreb and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will deliver presentations at the panel sessions. It is planned to discuss the major issues concerning the PPP such as the project cycle management, harmonization of the public procurement and PPP legislation with the acquis communautaire, and impacts of financial crisis on PPPs. Recent publications will be presented while representatives of Southeast Europe PPP Network (SEEPN) members will present the latest experiences in development and use of PPP in their respective country.