Parliament and EU

The European institutions in BiH

EUD/EUSR –The EU Delegation to BiH /the EU Special Representative to BiH

The Delegation of the European Union to Bosnia and Herzegovina (EUD) was first established in July 1996 as the Delegation of the European Commission. Upon the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon in December 2009, its name was changed to the Delegation of the European Union to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Following a decision of the Council of the European Union in July 2011, the powers and authorities of both the EU Special Representative (EUSR) and the Head of the EUD were vested in the same person. As a consequence, the EUD and the EUSR together function as 'one voice' on the ground.


The role of the EUD to BiH primarily entails:

  • presenting, explaining and implementing EU policy;
  • analyzing and reporting on the policies and developments in BiH; and
  • conducting negotiations in line with its mandate.

The EUD operates under the overall leadership of the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy /Vice President of the Commission. It promotes the EU's interests as embodied in common policies relating to, among other areas, foreign and security issues, commerce, agriculture, fisheries, environment, transport, health and safety. It plays a key role in the implementation of the EU’s external financial assistance. This primarily relates to the funds allocated under the Instrument for Pre-Accession (IPA).


The EUSR is mandated by the Council of the European Union to reinforce political support for the EU’s policy objectives in BiH: 'BIH’s progress in the Stabilization and Association Process, with the aim of seeing a stable, viable, peaceful, multi-ethnic BiH, co-operating fully and peacefully with its neighbors in the region'. The EUSR offers advice and facilitation support in the political process to institutions at all levels, aimed at ensuring greater consistency and coherence of all political, economic and European priorities – particularly in the areas of rule of law and security sector reform. The EUSR is responsible for the co-ordination of the EU's public communication in BiH, and for contributing to the further development of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. The EUSR reports to the Council of the European Union, the inter-governmental body representing the 28 EU member states, through the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy /Vice President of the Commission. The EU Delegation to BiH also has regional offices in Banja Luka, Mostar and Brčko.


EUFOR – European Union forces in BiH

The military operation ALTHEA was launched on 2 December 2004 and has contributed to the maintenance of a safe and secure BiH. The launch of Operation ALTHEA followed the decision by NATO to conclude its SFOR-operation and the adoption by the UN Security Council of

Resolution 1575 which authorized the deployment of an EU force (EUFOR) in BiH.

Operation ALTHEA is carried out with the use of NATO assets and capabilities, under the "Berlin Plus" arrangements.

In light of the improving security situation, Operation ALTHEA has been reconfigured four times, most recently in September 2012, but continues to act in accordance with its peace-enforcement mandate under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, as specified in the latest UN

Security Council Resolution 2123 which was adopted in 2013.

The main objectives of Operation ALTHEA are:

  • To provide capacity-building and training to the Armed Forces of BiH
  • To support domestic efforts to maintain a safe and secure environment in BiH
  • To provide support to the overall EU comprehensive strategy for BiH


EUFOR monitors and supports the local authorities in carrying out tasks derived from the GFAP (Dayton Agreement) such as: demining activities, military and civilian movement, control of weapons, ammunition and explosive substances, as well as the management of weapons and ammunition storage sites.

EUFOR retains its presence throughout the country through Liaison and Observation Teams (LOT Teams).

The Political and Security Committee exercises the political control and oversees the strategic direction of the operation, under the responsibility of the Council of the EU. Through its presence in the country and its support to the local authorities, EUFOR remains an important and visible contribution to the EU’s efforts in assisting BiH on its path towards EU membership.


EUNIC - European Union National Institutes for Culture in BiH

EUNIC Cluster BIH was established in February 2008, bringing together the four European Cultural Institutes in BiH and the cultural services of most of the embassies of EU countries. A representative of the EU Delegation to BiH also participates in EUNIC BiH meetings. EUNIC BiH aims to facilitate networking and the building of contacts between its members and other cultural actors in BiH, organize common projects in cooperation with partners from BiH and to promote European values including trans-European cooperation and the diversity of European culture.