“The Western Balkans region has sent a message that it is ready to implement the essential reforms required by the European Union, and in return EU needs to fulfill its commitments to these countries. The Berlin Process encourages the resolution of bilateral issues between the countries in the region and although it helps, is not a substitute for the accession process to the Union. The time has come for the region to have larger stake in the process and for the first time two Balkan countries to co-chair – one member and the other EU candidate country.” These are the main messages sent by Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov and Bulgarian Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva at a news conference following a Foreign Ministerial Meeting marking the start of the Berlin Process presidency between Macedonia and Bulgaria. FM Dimitrov opened the Foreign Minister meeting dedicated to the European perspective of the region in the context of the March Summit in Zagreb. “Our position is clear. We do not want to politicize the commissions. It is a two-way process. There is pre-election situation here which is no secret to anyone. I hope that when the elections are over, no matter what happens, the commission will immediately continue to work because it is part of the agreement we have signed and shows maturity regardless of who is in power,” she adds.