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EWB: Several MEI goals for this year in EU accession process

26. January 2018. | Belgrade

EWB: Several MEI goals for this year in EU accession process

 

Serbian Ministry of European Integration, headed by Minister Jadranka Joksimović, has several goals foreseen for this year, and the opening of chapters that are already in procedure in the Council of the EU is considered a realistic one, as written on the European Western Balkans (ЕWB) portal.

Citing its sources, EWB states that the first goal of the Department for Coordination of the Accession Process, headed by Assistant Minister Ksenija Milenković, is “the opening of new negotiation chapters in EU accession negotiations”.

In this context, the Ministry stresses that “in the first half of 2018, it is realistic to open chapters that are already in the procedure in the Council of the EU - chapters 33 (Financial and budgetary provisions), 9 (Financial services) and 13 (Fisheries)”.

“Two more chapters are in the final stage of our domestic procedure, namely chapters 18 (Statistics) and 17 (Economic and monetary policy), and we expect them to be ready for opening in the first half of the year.”

“In the second half of 2018, we are planning to prepare several more chapters for opening, including chapters that opening benchmarks are envisaged for”, point out the EWB’s interlocutors.

The second goal of this department is “the implementation and reporting on the implementation of the National Programme for the Adoption of the Acquis (NPAA)”.

The Ministry of European Integration is responsible for the preparation, adoption and implementation of the NPAA and is currently preparing the third revision of the NPAA which envisages, as confirmed, full alignment of national legislation with the EU acquis by the end of 2021.

Since mid-2013, the Ministry of European Integration, i.e. the then European Integration Office, has not published reports on the implementation of the NPAA.

“We expect the NPAA to be adopted in the following weeks, after which we will quarterly inform the Government on its implementation during 2018”, explain the representatives of the Ministry of European Integration.

With regard to the Department for Planning, Programming, Monitoring and Reporting on EU Funds and Development Assistance, headed by Assistant Minister Branko Budimir, “the main goal for 2018 is to ensure additional grants that will be directed towards the realisation of development priorities and goals at the national, regional and local level”.

“In this regard, the Ministry will work on the preparation and focalisation of financial agreements that will ensure EU grants in the amount of over EUR 200 million from the EU pre-accession assistance funds (IPA II) and funds of the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF), aimed at ensuring the preparation and implementation of priority infrastructure projects in the field of transport, energy and environment”, say the representatives of the Ministry.

Speaking about the work of the Department for Cross-Border and Transnational Cooperation Programmes and Cooperation with Local and Regional Authorities and Organisations for More Efficient Use of Funds, headed by Assistant Minister Mihajilo Dašić, as this year’s goal the EWB’s interlocutors from the Ministry specify “the preparation and announcement of the Call for submission of project proposals within programmes of cross-border and transnational cooperation where Serbia participates with the total amount of EUR 53 million, i.e. in seven cross-border cooperation programmes and two transnational cooperation programmes.”

Overall, in the EU accession negotiations, Serbia has so far opened 12 out of 35 negotiation chapters, whereof two have been provisionally closed. At the EU - Serbia Intergovernmental Conference held on 11 December 2017, Chapter 6 on company law and Chapter 30 on external trade relations were opened.

(source: Tanjug)