DEI Bosna i Hercegovina
Council of Ministers - Directorate for European Integration

Stabilisation and Association Agreement

Implementation of the SAA
Bodies of BiH and the EU under the SAA
The Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) is a new, third generation of accession agreements offered only to the Western Balkan countries. It aims at enabling them to establish close and long-lasting relations with the European Union and prospective EU membership.

The SAA is signed for an indefinite period of time and, in addition to accession, it contains elements of security, political and economic stabilisation, as well as the element of regional cooperation. The aim of the Agreement is the formal accession of a country to the European Union in a given transition period of 6 to 10 years.

The country signatory is required to gradually adapt its legislation to the European Union acquis and to establish a free-trade zone with the European Union.

The Stabilisation and Association Agreement between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, of the other, was signed in Luxembourg on 16 June 2008 and came into effect on 1 June 2005. It replaced the Interim Agreement on Trade and Trade-related Issues, which entered into force on 1 July 2008.

On 18 July 2016, the European Commission and Bosnia and Herzegovina initialled the Protocol on the adaptation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA). The Protocol lays out technical adaptation of the SAA provisions on trade relating to exports from BiH to the EU market and exports from the EU to BiH, taking into account the Croatian EU accession in 2013.

Joint bodies of the European Union and Bosnia and Herzegovina were established for monitoring the SAA application and implementation:

  • Stabilisation and Association Council – composed of members of the Council of the EU, and the European Commission, on the one hand, and of the BiH Council of Ministers, on the other
  • Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee – a forum of members of the Parliamentary Assembly of BiH and the European Parliament
  • Stabilisation and Association Committee - a technical level body assisting the Stabilisation and Association Council in the performance of its duties
  • Seven sub-committees and the Special Group on Public Administration Reform acting under the competence of the Stabilisation and Association Committee.
    • Sub-committee on Trade and Industry, Customs and Taxation
    • Sub-committee on Agriculture and Fisheries
    • Sub-committee on Internal Market and Competition
    • Sub-committee on Economic and Financial Issues and Statistics
    • Sub-committee meeting on Justice, Freedom and Security
    • Sub-committee on Innovation, Information Society and Social Policy
    • Sub-committee on Transport, Energy, Environment and Regional Development
    • Special Group on Public Administration Reform
      Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee
      Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee

      This body assists the Stabilisation and Association Council in discharging its duties. It is composed of representatives of the Council of the EU, of the European Commission and of the BiH Council of Ministers, usually at the level of high-ranking civil servants. In principle, the Stabilisation and Association Committee meets annually and whenever the circumstances require so

      The Committee prepares meetings and discussions of the Stabilisation and Association Council and, when necessary, implements decisions of the Stabilisation and Association Council. In general, it ensures the continuity of accession relations and proper SAA implementation. It considers all the issues addressed to it by the Stabilisation and Association Council, as well as all other issues that may arise in the SAA implementation. Pursuant to Article 119 of the SAA, the Stabilisation and Association Committee may set up its sub-committees.

      Documents of the Stabilisation and Association Committee are available at the following links:

      Decision No. 1/2015 of the EU-BIH Stabilisation and Association Committee of 17 December 2015 on establishing sub-committees and special groups
      Stabilisation and Association Council
      Stabilisation and Association Council

      This body monitors the SAA application and implementation, considers all the relevant issues arising within the SAA framework, as well as all other bilateral and international issues of interest for both parties. It consists of members of the Council of the EU, of the European Commission and of the Council of Ministers of BiH. Its meetings are held annually, at the ministerial level and whenever the circumstances require so.

      Documents of the Stabilisation and Association Council are available at the following links:

      Decision No. 1 of the EU-BIH Stabilisation and Association Council of 11 December 2015 adopting its rules of procedure
      Stabilisation and Association Committee is a technical level body assisting the Stabilisation and Association Council in the performance of its duties.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Brussels, 17 December 2015

      Second meeting, Sarajevo, 31 May 2017

      Third meeting, Brussels, 27 March 2018

      Fourth meeting, Sarajevo, 7 November 2019

      Subcommittee on Trade, Industry, Customs and Taxation
      Subcommittee on Trade, Industry, Customs and Taxation discusses issues related to free movement of goods, industrial products, trade, standardisation, metrology, accreditation, certification, conformity assessment and market surveillance, cooperation in the area of industry, small and medium enterprises, tourism, customs, taxation, rules of origin.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Brussels, 8 July 2016 

      Second meeting, Sarajevo, 24 October 2017

      Third meeting, Brussels, 18 October 2018

      Fourth meeting, Video Teleconferencing, 14 May 2020

      Subcommittee on Agriculture and Fisheries
      Subcommittee on Agriculture and Fisheries discusses issues related to agricultural products in the broad and narrow sense, fishery products, processed agricultural products, wine, protection of geographical indications for agricultural and fishery products and foodstuffs (excluding wines and spirits), agriculture and the agro-industrial sector, veterinary and phytosanitary issues, cooperation in fisheries and food safety.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Brussels, 29 June 2016

      Second meeting, Sarajevo, 25 October 2017  

      Third meeting, Brussels, 25 October 2018

      Fourth meeting, Video Teleconferencing, 16 June 2020

      Subcommittee on Internal Market and Market Competition
      Subcommittee on Internal Market and Market Competition discusses issues related to the right of establishment, provision of services and other matters related to Chapter V of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement, alignment of legislation and law enforcement, market competition, intellectual, industrial and commercial property rights, public procurement, banking, insurance and other financial services, consumer protection and public health.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Brussels, 29 November 2016

      Second meeting, Mostar, 19 September 2017

      Third meeting, Brussels, 20 September 2018

      Fourth meeting, Sarajevo, 12 December 2019

      Subcommittee on Economic and Financial Issues and Statistics 
      Subcommittee on Economic and Financial Issues and Statistics discusses issues related to the movement of capital and payments, economic policy, cooperation in the field of statistics, investment promotion and protection and financial cooperation.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting - Sarajevo, January 25 and 26, 2017

      Second meeting - Brussels, 14 and 15 November 2017

      Third meeting - Mostar, November 15 and 16, 2018

      Fourth meeting - Brussels, 19 and 20 November 2019

      Subcommittee on Justice, Freedom and Security
      Subcommittee on Justice, Freedom and Security discusses issues related to justice and fundamental rights (including the fight against discrimination), police and judicial cooperation, the rule of law, data protection, visas, border control, asylum and migration, irregular migration and readmission, money laundering, drugs, fight against terrorism, crime and other illegal activities.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Sarajevo, 1 and 2 December 2016

      Second meeting, Brussels, 30 November and 1 December 2017

      Third meeting, Banja Luka, 28 and 29 November 2018

      Fourth meeting, Brussels, 5 and 6 December 2019

      Fourth Meeting of the Subcommittee on Justice, Freedom and Security between the EU and BiH - Report of Experts on Rule of Law Issues in BiH - Brussels - December 5 2019

      Subcommittee on Innovation, Information Society and Social Policy
      Subcommittee on Innovation, Information Society and Social Policy discusses issues related to the movement of workers, working conditions and equal opportunities, cooperation in the field of social policy, education and training, cooperation in the field of culture, information and communications, cooperation in the field of audio-visual services, networks and services of electronic communications, information society, research and technological development.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting - Banja Luka, 9 February  2017

      Second meeting - Brussels, 30 January 2018

      Third meeting - Sarajevo, 13 February 2019

      Fourth meeting - Brussels, 20 February 2020

      Subcommittee on Transport, Energy, Environment and Regional Development
      Subcommittee on Transport, Energy, Environment and Regional Development discusses issues related to transport, energy, nuclear safety, environment, climate change, civil protection and regional and local development.

      Recommendations of the European Commission following the meetings:

      First meeting, Brussels, 30 November 2016

      Second meeting, Banja Luka, 30 November 2017

      Third meeting, Brussels, 13 December 2018

      Fourth meeting, Video Teleconferencing, 22 September 2020