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J. Joksimović: Rule of law cluster crucial for progress

February 03 2021 | Belgrade

J. Joksimović: Rule of law cluster crucial for progress

Minister of European Integration Jadranka Joksimović has received a farewell visit from Dutch Ambassador Gilles Beschoor Plug. They have discussed the two countries’ cooperation in Serbia’s European integration process, strengthening political and economic relations, and current developments in tackling the effects of the global health crisis.

Joksimović has thanked Plug for his personal engagement and initiatives towards the improvement of bilateral relations, stressing that Serbia recognises the Netherlands’ consistent positions regarding the realisation of the EU enlargement policy.

“The positions of the Dutch Government are very strict with regard to the EU accession of new countries, but at the same time, they are measurable through the individual progress of each candidate. Therefore, Serbia is determined to accelerate internal political and economic reforms for the benefit of its citizens and for the sake of faster membership in the EU”, stated Joksimović.

Joksimović has informed the Ambassador about the most important activities the Ministry of European Integration is undertaking in terms of internal reorganisation of the negotiating structure in line with the new methodology initiated by the European Commission.

“We are constantly in contact with the EU, and this proactive approach enables us to prepare for faster meeting of criteria, so that we could open some of the clusters this year”, said the Minister.

Joksimović has also expressed expectations that the political Intergovernmental Conference be organised during the Portuguese presidency, where details of the new manner of negotiations, including a plan for the application of the methodology to Serbia’s negotiation process, will be defined with the representatives of the EC and member states.

Ambassador Plug has stated that, during his term of office in Serbia, he strived to work with Serbian partners on strengthening the economic and political relations between the two countries, adding that he actively followed Serbia’s European integration process.

The effects of the implemented reforms, particularly in economy, have contributed to the improvement of the situation in the area of economy and citizens’ life standard, said the Ambassador, adding that the Netherlands expects internal reforms to be additionally intensified, particularly in the area of the rule of law, so that Serbia would remain a reliable EU partner in the future, which has proven particularly important during the current global crisis.

The interlocutors have agreed that there is a need to intensify cooperation for the purpose of achieving an even better understanding of the two countries’ positions regarding key issues of the modern European society.

As reported from the Ministry of European Integration, the Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ has invited Minister Joksimović to be the keynote speaker at an online international panel on Serbia’s European integration, and to present Serbia’s positions and results in the process of EU membership negotiations.

Source: Tanjug