J. Joksimović: The EU funds will not be reduced

24. October 2018. | Belgrade

J. Joksimović: The EU funds will not be reduced

Minister of European Integration Jadranka Joksimović has presented today the publication Guidelines for Use of EU Funds in Serbia IPA II (2014-2020) at the Belgrade Book Fair. Answering to the press as to whether she had visited the Fair, where leader of the Serbian Radical Party (SRS) Vojislav Šešelj is also presenting his books at the booth of Velika Srbija, she has said that she is not ashamed of anything from her political past.
"I have yet to visit the Fair. I can see that you are referring to the fact that I was a member of SRS, whose booth is now at the Fair, but I have always done my job honourably and responsibly, so I am not ashamed of anything," Joksimović has said.

She has said that she always did what she thought was good for Serbia, and that she has never "unfairly set anyone up or done anything to them or written about them".
"I believe that I have proven this with my work, and if you possess a better argument with which you will try to discredit me, I would like to hear it, since I adore criticism," she has stated.

According to her, it would be better to ask some other people what they did during their political career, since she has always worked "honourably and honestly".

Asked about IPA III funds, Joksimović has said that it remains to be seen how these funds will be conceived, and whether the funds will be allocated by sectors or by candidate countries.

She has added that Serbia is already participating in the process and providing its opinions, but that the ultimate decisions do not lie with it.
"It is important that we know that these funds are at our disposal, and that we must strengthen our capacities, especially at the local level, and not to ask for money from the budget for what does not have to be financed from the budget, since European funds are available," she has explained.

She has stressed that it will be good if the amount of funds increases, but that it will surely not be reduced.
"We need to be realistic, given the UK's withdrawal from the EU, which has been a great contributor, but these amounts will certainly not be lesser, which I think is the most important," she has said, while Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Sem Fabrizi has added that, for the next cycle by 2021, i.e. for IPA III, a 20% increase in funds has been proposed within the European Commission, but that no final decision has been made yet.

Source: Tanjug