A dramatic request of Montenegro’s Deputy Prime Minister Dritan Abazović for Europe’s help in the repayment of a loan from China’s Exim bank so that Montenegro may avoid the debt bondage hadn’t been planned previously in Podgorica, but followed the proposal of the EU’s high-ranking commissioner for neighborhood and enlargement, Oliver Varhely, two diplomatic sources from Brussels told Pobjeda daily.
Speaking before the AFET Committee, Mr Abazović noted that a debt owed to China represented a serious problem for Montenegro, emphasizing that China thus may have spread the negative impact in Montenegro and the Western Balkans as well.
His request provoked strong reactions, and Mr Varhely was the first to comment, telling that the EU “will consider ways to help Montenegro”.
According to Pobjeda’s interlocutors, his reaction was previously agreed.
Before the AFET’s session in Brussels, they say, the EU commissioner advised Mr Abazović to open that issue.
“Mr Abazović was a little hesitant about that approach, but in the end, he did it,” our source stresses.
The bait had been laid and many took it: the story about a malignant impact of China in Montenegro went viral – it’s a basis for various analyses and warnings that the non-EU investments are “destroying Europe”.