Serbia's President Aleksandar Vucic and German Chancellor Angela Merkel held an online conference on Thursday focused on Belgrade's European path, dialogue on the normalisation of relations with Pristina, the economy and the rule of law.
That will probably be their last meeting in Germany’s presidency of the Council of the EU, which ends this year, with Portugal taking over.
Merkel, who welcomed Serbia’s progress in the economy, and efforts in the European integration, but added the dialogue with Pristina and the rule of law were crucial, according to a statement from Vucic’s cabinet.
Vucic thanked her for what he said was Germany’s continuous support for Serbia’s European integration. He also said the reforms in the rule of law were essential for Serbia’s aim to join the bloc, adding the cooperation with Germany and EU institutions was a right way for the improvement in that area.
Serbia’s President reiterated the need for a clear plan for EU enlargement and a time framework for the membership. Vucic added the process of Western Balkans European integration was essential for peace and stability in the region.
Regarding the continuation of Kosovo talks, the two agreed the talks dialogue was, as well as that the preservation of peace was equally important for both sides.
Vucic said that he would take all necessary steps to successfully continue the dialogue and create a constructive and open atmosphere for negotiations.
Merkel welcomed Serbia’s readiness for further work on keeping the region safe and reiterated Germany would remain Serbia’s reliable partner in the European integration.
„The economy is a strong link between our two countries,“ she said.
Vucic recalled that German companies operating in Serbia employed over 67,000 workers and that they significantly contributed to the country’s economic development, as well as to Serbia’s reputation as a good place for investments.
„We are grateful for Germany’s support of Serbia’s economy. Germany is our largest trading partner, even during the global crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. There is a growing interest of German companies to invest in our country, and I am proud to say that Serbia will have the highest growth in Europe this year, despite all the current challenges,“ Vucic said.