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Serbia : Joksimovic, Cretu Discuss Serbia's Eu Accession, Regional Cooperation.

The Serbian minister in charge of the country's accession to the European Union (EU), Jadranka Joksimovic, met in Belgrade, on Jan. 19, with European Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Cretu to discuss Serbia's EU membership bid and the situation in the region. Minister Joksimovic voiced her thanks for the EU's assistance to Serbia in establishing a system to use the Union's development funds, underlining the importance of Serbia and the EU working together to boost cross-border cooperation and macro-regional strategies, for the Danube, Adriatic and Ionian regions in particular. She placed a heavy emphasis on the two parties cooperating in connection with Chapter 22 on regional policy and the coordination of structural instruments, the Serbian government has said. The Serbian minister also underlined the importance of the EU's financial support from 2014 to 2020, which gave Serbia access to some EUR1.5 billion in grants, the cabinet said.

The two officials agreed that cross-border cooperation contributed to the "exceptional visibility of the EU's development assistance," and the Serbian minister said that cross-border cooperation with Bosnia, Montenegro, Croatia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria was very important, adding that a cross-border program with Macedonia would be launched by the end of the year, the government said in a press release. Cretu congratulated Serbia on "a very active approach" to Danube and Adriatic-Ionian macro-regional cooperation, praising the quality of Serbia's cooperation with its neighbors. The EU official previously met with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic on Jan. 18. Her message to the Serbian president was that it was of utmost importance that the situation between Belgrade and Pristina remain peaceful and stable in the wake of the murder of Oliver Ivanovic.

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Publication:Mena Report
Date:Jan 23, 2018
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