Presentation

Political relations

Political dialogue between France and Bosnia and Herzegovina started with the country’s independence and has never ceased, even during the years of conflict. During the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina (1992-1995), France made strong political, diplomatic and military (UNPROFOR, United Nations Protection Force) efforts. The Peace Agreement which put an end to the conflict was initialled in Dayton and then signed in Paris on 14 December 1995. France’s involvement continued during the years of reconstruction, including through its participation in peacekeeping operations (IFOR, SFOR, EUFOR Althea). While France’s military presence has come to an end, it continues to take part in the Peace Implementation Council (PIC), a body which produces political guidance for the High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina

Visits

The Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina was received by President Hollande on 28 May 2013. In 2015, Mr Fadil Novalić, Prime Minister of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, made a working visit to France in connection with his policy of implementation of the structural reforms promoted by the European Union. He was received by Mr Harlem Désir on 21 October 2015. Mr Dragan Mektić, Minister of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, visited France from 16 to 19 November 2015 to attend the Milipol Paris Worldwide Exhibition of Internal Security. During the Western Balkans Summit in Paris on 4 July 2016, the French Foreign Minister, Mr Jean-Marc Ayrault, met with his Bosnian counterpart, Mr Igor Crnadak. The Bosnian delegation was led by the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mr Denis Zvizdić. On 8 November 2016, Mr Dragan Mektić, Minister of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, met in Paris with Mr Bernard Cazeneuve, Minister of the Interior.

The French Minister of State for European Affairs, Mr Harlem Désir, visited Sarajevo on 28 June 2014 to attend the centenary commemoration of the assassination of Archduke Franz-Ferdinand, heir to the throne of the Habsburgs, on 28 June 1914. Mr Jean-Marc Todeschini, Minister of State for Veterans and Remembrance, visited Srebrenica in July 2015 on the occasion of the 20ᵗʰ anniversary of the genocide.

Economic relations

There are opportunities for our companies, especially in the sectors of infrastructure and energy. Bosnia and Herzegovina is the only country in the Western Balkans where no French bank is present. The main French investor in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the dairy group Lactalis, via its Croatian subsidiary Dukat.

Trade in goods between France and Bosnia and Herzegovina was up 18.2% year-on-year in 2016, standing at €207.5 million. France has had a trade deficit with Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2015, which rose steeply in 2016 (+51.5%). France is the country’s eighth-largest European supplier and 12ᵗʰ-largest internationally, accounting for 3.5% of its imports. France is also Bosnia and Herzegovina’s 12ᵗʰ-largest customer. A significant share of imports from Bosnia and Herzegovina is made up of products exported to Bosnia and Herzegovina for processing and then reimported to France.

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

Our cooperation relies on the Sarajevo-based French Institute in Bosnia and Herzegovina (IFBH) and its satellite centres in Mostar and Banja Luka, and on the legacy of the André Malraux Centre, which was established in Sarajevo during the conflict. The two institutions merged in 2014.

For more information, visit the website of the Institut Français: http://institutfrancais.ba/

Other cooperation

An Internal Security Attaché (ASI) based in Sarajevo implements police cooperation actions, mainly with central police services (Bosnian State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) and border police in particular) aimed as a priority at combating organized crime, terrorism and illegal immigration.

Updated: 25 August 2017

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