Vucic: Non-paper presented, Austria wants tangible enlargement process


Austrian Minister for Foreign and European Affairs Alexander Schallenberg met Monday in Belgrade with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and presented an Austrian non-paper.

The non-paper seeks to make the European Union enlargement process much more tangible and to create a possibility for candidate countries to gradually integrate with EU policies that are beneficial to all of them, the President’s Office for Media Relations said.

Vucic said Serbia appreciates Austria’s commitment to speeding up its European integration and hopes for continued support on this path. “I informed minister Schallenberg of the challenges that the Western Balkan countries face on their European path”, said Vucic.

He told Schallenberg that it was in Serbia’s interest to continue advancing the political dialogue and deepening cooperation with Austria.

Vucic said Austria was the third largest foreign investor in Serbia and its fifth largest foreign trade partner in the services trade. Austrian companies currently employ over 22,000 workers in Serbia, said Vucic, adding that he believes the newly-established flights between Belgrade and Salzburg will help further boost cooperation between the two countries, said the President’s media office.

“Constructive and open talks with President Vucic and PM Brnabic. Austria and Serbia share close relations, with Austria being one of the largest investors. Serbia can fully count on our support for EU accession. It’s clear that EU perspective is not a one-way street,” Minister Schallenberg said on his Twitter account.

The Office quoted Minister Schallenberg as saying that Serbia belongs to the European family and that Austria will continue to support the European integration process. He positively assessed Serbia’s economic growth in the past period and said there was interest to intensify economic cooperation and that in the field of energy and renewable energy sources, said the Office.

Schallenberg also met Monday with Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and with his counterpart Nikola Selakovic.