J. Joksimović and Lutterotti: Austria strongly supports the European path of Serbia
April 20 2018 | Belgrade
Minister of European Integration Jadranka Joksimović has talked with the newly appointed Ambassador of Austria to the Republic of Serbia, H.E. Nikolaus Lutterotti about the EC Progress Report for Serbia, bilateral relations and cooperation between the two countries in the continuation of Serbia's accession to the EU, the results of the reform process, the situation in the region and the priorities of the Austrian Presidency of the EU Council in the second half of the year.
Joksimović has assessed that the EC Progress Report is balanced, good and measured, and that Serbia's progress has been noted in almost all areas. She has particularly emphasised the results achieved in the field of economy, rule of law, fight against organised crime and corruption, but also the statements on the importance of our country as a factor of regional cooperation and stability.
"Of course, we are aware that there is still more to be done in all of these areas," the Minister has explained, adding that everything that will be done will be in the function of citizens' progress.
"The Report is also an important indicator for the opening of new chapters," the Minister has said. She has informed Lutertotti that the country is ready for the opening of five new chapters: 33 - Financial and budgetary provisions, 9 - Financial services, 13 - Fisheries, 18 - Statistics and 17 - Economic and monetary policy, and has said that Serbia expects to open more than two chapters during the Bulgarian presidency over the EU Council in the first half of the year.
The Minister of European Integration has stressed that stability and progress are very important for Serbia, as well as for both the region and the EU as a whole. She has expressed her belief that the Belgrade’s advocacy - that peace is a prerequisite for cooperation and development - should be followed by everyone in the region.
"Austria strongly supports the clear pro-European commitment and strategic interest of Serbia to become a member of the EU," Ambassador Lutterotti has said.
He has confirmed that, during its EU Council Presidency, Austria will assist Serbia in the further accession process, and has stressed that, when it comes to European integration, Serbia is on the right track. Convinced that our country's future place is in the EU, he has positively assessed the results of the reforms and has expressed his expectations that the initiated reforms will continue to be implemented with greater intensity.
The Minister of European Integration has thanked for the assistance, support and experience with which Austria contributes to the European integration process of Serbia. She and Ambassador Lutterotti have pointed out that the bilateral relations of the two countries are at a high level and have specified that one of the proofs is the fact that Austria is one of the largest investors in Serbian economy.
They have also noted that there is room for intensifying the overall cooperation.