The Chairperson and members of the European Integration Committee met today at the National Assembly with a member of the German Bundestag Thomas Hacker to discuss the relations between Serbia and Germany, the perspectives of Serbia's European integration and regional cooperation.
Committee Chairperson Elvira Kovacs stressed that though the current National Assembly legislature has a plurality of political parties, the majority of MPs support European integration, adding that EU membership is a priority of Serbia's foreign policy. She thanked Germany for its understanding and the continued assistance to Serbia on its European path.
Bundestag member Thomas Hacker stressed that Germany strongly supports the European integration of Serbia and the rest of the Western Balkans, emphasising that they are crucial for the future unity of Europe. "We want to be Serbia's partner not only for economic reasons, but for foreign policy reasons as well, because together we need to construct a basis for the creation of a common future," he said.
In the course of the meeting, Kovacs informed the German MP of the European Integration Committee’s competencies, underlining the wide scope of its work. She went on to say that the Committee takes active part in regional forums of comprising members of European integration committees, as well as in the work of the Conference of Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC).
She informed the guest that the European Integration Committee will have a meeting this week to consider the European Commission’s 2022 Progress Report on Serbia and ascertain conclusion proposals on the reviewed Report, and continue with the good practice of having the conclusion proposals considered at a National Assembly session.
The meeting was attended by the Committee Deputy Chairperson Dubravka Filipovski, as well as Committee members Natan Albahari, Ksenija Markovic, Goran Milic and Milan Radin. They emphasised the importance of Germany's support for Serbia's European integration, as well as the importance of economic cooperation and investments, seeing how over 70,000 of our workers are employed by German companies operating in Serbia.
The Committee members and the member of the German Bundestag agreed that Serbia’s European integration has been taking a long time and that it is important to receive a positive signal from the EU, just as it is important to continue working on reform processes that ensure the further improvement of the rule of law.
The officials particularly emphasised the importance of regional initiatives and regional cooperation, which is also important from the aspect of the European integration of the Western Balkans. They underlined the importance of the Berlin Process, agreeing that it is important to add a parliamentary dimension to this regional initiative. They also highlighted the importance of the Open Balkans initiative.
The meeting also touched on the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, bearing in mind that it significantly affects Serbia's European integration. Thomas Hacker stressed that dialogue is important and expressed the expectation that it would lead to a sustainable solution acceptable to both parties.