BELGRADE, November 4, 2003
SCG - PORTUGAL
SCG – UNITED STATES
SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO
KOSOVO - METOHIJA
* * *
SCG - PORTUGAL
MAROVIC VISIT PORTUGAL
LISBON, Nov. 3 (Beta) - Portuguese President Jorge Sampaio said on Nov. 3 that Lisbon supported Serbia and Montenegro's efforts to join European and Euroatlantic integration processes.
After his conversation with SerbiaMontenegro President Svetozar Marovic, who is on an official visit to Portugal, Sampaio also gave support to Serbia and Montenegro's efforts to resolve the complex situation in Kosovo.
Marovic thanked Sampaio for his support and emphasized that "Serbia and Montenegro were convinced that their only future was within Europe."
Marovic also said he believed that the feasibility study will be favorable for Serbia and Montenegro and lead to negotiations on an agreement on stabilization and accession to the EU.
SerbiaMontenegro Foreign Minister Goran Svilanovic, who is also visiting Portugal, signed an agreement on succession to bilateral agreements signed by the former S.F.R.Y. and the F.R.Y.
The agreements include scientific, technical and economic cooperation, as well as cooperation in the area of tourism and the media.
SERBIA&MONTENEGRO AND PORTUGAL AGREE TO FORM BUSINESS COUNCIL
LISBON, Nov. 3 (Beta) - SerbiaMontenegro President Svetozar Marovic and Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Manuel Durao Barroso have agreed to form a business council, which will step up business cooperation between the two countries, the SerbiaMontenegro president said in Lisbon, on Nov. 3.
Marovic told reporters in Lisbon that he had informed the Portuguese prime minister that Serbia and Montenegro were a safe area for investment. Both officials advocated more intense economic cooperation.
SCG – UNITED STATES
OFFICIAL NORMALIZATION OF TRADE BETWEEN UNITED STATES AND SCG
WASHINGTON, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - U.S. State Department Deputy Spokesman Adam Erely on Monday officially confirmed to reporters that normal trade relations between the United States of America and Serbia and Montenegro (SCG) had been established.
Erely said that U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell had signed a decree on normalization of trade relations between the two countries, specifying that this decision would be forwarded to the Congress and will go into effect on December 1, after its publication in the U.S. Official Gazette
Erely underlined that the reestablishment of normal trade relations between the two countries is a support to the reforms the SCG is carrying out, as well as to the economic development, which is the key prerequisite for the stability of the region.
WASHINGTON'S DECISION CONFIRMS AND ENCOURAGES REFORMS
WASHINGTON, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Serbia and Montenegro (SCG) Ambassador to the United States Ivan Vujacic has told Tanjug that the reestablishment of trade relations between the United States of America and the SCG is a great encouragement to the SCG economy.
"I am very pleased with the U.S. government decision to pass a decree on normalization of trade relations," Ambassador Vujacic said. "The issue has been one of our priorities in the relations with the United States since the restoration of diplomatic relations in the year 2000, and this decree had crowned the numerous talks and efforts invested to this end," said Vujacic on Monday.
"The United States is already the biggest foreign investor in Serbia and Montenegro, and with the reestablishment of trade relations between the two countries it will surely become one of our most important trade partners," Vujacic said.
ZIVKOVIC SAYS AGREEMENT WITH US BIG STEP FORWARD
BELGRADE, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Zivkovic said on Monday today's signing of an agreement on normal trade relations with the United States is a big step froward, that domestic goods will be placed on the US market at a 20 percent lower customs rate, and that this will have a positive impact on investments by US companies in the Serbian market.
Zivkovic told reporters in Serbian parliament that US Secretary of State Colin Powell signed a document envisaging normal trade relations between Serbia and the US, which he described as great progress against the situation present over the past 15 years.
This should stoke further investments by US companies in this country and their exports to this market, Zivkovic said.
SERIOUS ENCOURAGEMENT FOR MAJOR PART OF SERBIAN ECONOMY, VLAHOVIC
BELGRADE, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - Republic Minister of Trade and Privatization Aleksandar Vlahovic said on Monday the agreement on the normalization of trade relations with the United States represented a serious encouragement for the major part of the Serbian economy.
Vlahovic told the press at the Serbian parliament that by saying that, he first of all referred to the foodstuffs-agricultural-processing complex, and on the other hand, to part of the metal industry.
"I expect that our companies and entrepreneurs will know how to use the chances the U.S. market is offering," Vlahovic pointed out.
NORMALIZATION OF TRADE RELATIONS WITH U.S. OPENS NEW PROSPECTS, MILOSAVLJEVIC
BELGRADE, Nov. 3 (Beta) - Serbian Trade and Tourism Minister Slobodan Milosavljevic said on Nov. 3 that the fact that local companies would be able to export goods to the U.S. market without additional customs taxes opened new prospects for the Serbian economy.
"The U.S. is the greatest economic and political world power and the normalization of trade relations opens favorable prospects for many domestic companies which used to be successful on this market and still aspire to a share in it," Milosavljevic told reporters in the Serbian Legislature.
In his words, the U.S. market is especially interested in the weapons, pharmaceutical and furniture industries, and possibly the meat-processing industry, in the future.
SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO
MAROVIC ARRIVES IN KIEV
KIEV, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Serbia and Montenegro (SCG) President Svetozar Marovic on Tuesday began his two-day official visit to the Ukraine with a meeting with Ukraine President Leonid Kuchma. Marovic is heading a SCG, including Minister for International Economic Relations Branko Lukovac and Deputy Defense Minister Vukasin Maras, as well as 70 businessmen from 57 SCG companies, who are scheduled to attend the opening of the Business Forum of the Ukraine and the SCG.
Lukovac and Maras will later join Marovic and Kuchma for the signing of agreements on cooperation in the field of tourism and military and technical cooperation.
Marovic and Kuchma are also planned to address the participants of the Business Forum, where agreements on cooperation between the chambers of commerce of Serbia, Montenegro and the Ukraine are expected to be signed.
ICTY WILL BE REQUESTED TO ALLOW TRIALS TO GENERALS IN THE COUNTRY, SVILANOVIC
BELGRADE, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - President of the National Council for cooperation with the Hague International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia Goran Svilanovic said on Tuesday that the Council plans to address the Tribunal with a request to transfer the proceedings against four army and police generals to the domestic judicial organs.
Svilanovic, who is also Serbia and Montenegro's Foreign Minister, told Radio B92 that this process would require a lot of diplomatic effort on behalf of our country.
If we want to persuade the Tribunal that we can hold trials, we have to treat those indictments as criminal charges and, if necessary, issue local indictments and start the court proceedings, underlined Svilanovic. "If we fail to do all this, don't full yourself that someone would let us carry out the proceedings and that the Tribunal would officially transfer the proceedings to our competency," said Svilanovic. Svilanovic recalled that the ICTY Prosecutor's Office had assessed that there are no conditions for the above, but that there is a possibility of the Trial Chamber making a different decision. Generals Nebojsa Pavkovic, Vladimir Lazarevic, Sreten Lukic and Vlastimir Djordjevic are indicted by the Hague Tribunal for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during the armed conflicts in Kosovo-Metohija in 1998-1999.
TADIC: PEACEKEEPING MISSIONS CONDITION FOR BECOMING PART OF WORLD
KOTOR, Nov. 3 (Beta) - SerbiaMontenegro Defense Minister Boris Tadic said in the Montenegrin coastal town of Kotor on Nov. 3, that the participation in peacekeeping missions was a condition for the country becoming "a part of the world."
"It is very important to give a balanced explanation and analysis relating to the country's participation in peacekeeping missions, the integration of the army in the collective security system, relations the country's army and other world armed forces, and the country's contribution to the suppression of terrorism," Tadic said.
"The SerbiaMontenegro Defense Ministry is not the culture ministry or an association of nuns. We are the Army of SerbiaMontenegro and our role is to execute military and defense tasks," Tadic told a press conference on the British Royal Navy combat ship Summerset, docked in the Kotor harbor.
Tadic stressed that the SerbiaMontenegro Parliament would make a final decision as to whether the country's soldiers would be deployed within international peacekeeping missions.
The Army Chief of Staff, Gen. Branko Krga, said that a through evaluation as to "what should be expected on missions," would be made before possible deployment. He stressed that this was not a matter of venturing into the unknown, but of the state taking a responsible approach, arising from the U.N. Charter. The three-day event entitled "Days of Britain," organized for the visit of two British combat ships, ended in Kotor on Nov. 3.
SCG DEPUTY DEFENSE MINISTER RECEIVES OUTGOING CHINESE AMBASSADOR
BELGRADE, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - Serbia-Montenegro Deputy Defense Minister Vukasin Maras received Monday the outgoing Chinese Ambassador Wen Xigui, the ministry PR office said.
They expressed their pleasure with the development of bilateral relations so far and pointed to prospects for their future fostering in all fields.
Maras briefed the ambassador on the current reform of the SCG defense system and Army, and thanked him for his personal contribution to the development of cooperation, especially in the military sector, and to the strengthening of friendship between the two countries.
COUNTER TERRORISM TRAINING FOR POLICEMEN OF BALKAN COUNTRIES
BUDAPEST, Nov. 3 (Tanjug) - Policemen from Balkan countries, including Serbia and Montenegro, started on Monday in Budapest a one-week course, organized by the United States, for fighting terrorism. The course is attended by policemen from Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro and Croatia. They will be trained how to resolve crisis situations, conduct negotiations with kidnappers, conduct investigations at the crime scene, and detect the sources financing terrorists, an official of the Hungarian Interior Ministry said.
The training, for the third consecutive year, will be conducted at the academy run by the U.S. Justice Department and the Hungarian Foreign Ministry.
At the official opening of the course, US Ambassador George Walker said they were all there to wage war on terrorism, the primary objective of US foreign policy. It was not specified how many policemen were taking part in the course, the US Associated Press news agency said.
ISRAEL AWARDS RIGHTEOUS AMONG THE NATIONS MEDAL
BELGRADE, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Svetozar Milenkovic, Vida Petrovic and her brother Aleksandar Petrovic, who helped spare the lives of the Jewish Fenyi family during World War II, as well as Kosta Novakovic and Kosara Petrovic, who had saved Rebecca Taytachek and her four children are posthumous recipients of Israel's highest award for non-Jews the Righteous Among the Nations medal.
Israeli Ambassador to Serbia and Montenegro Yaffa Ben Ari presented the medals to the recipients' children Bosko and Dragan Milenkovic, Bratislav Novakovic, Ljubica Kacanski and Dragan Petrovic in Belgrade on Monday.
Israel today honoured these exceptional Serbs who had saved the lives of two Jewish families, thus saving the face of humanity, preserving the light of life in the darkness of World War II, and in their own way confirmed the words written in Yad Vashem - "The one who saves one human life had saved the whole world," Ambassador Ben Ari said.
MINISTER DJELIC ATTENDS SEMINAR IN STOCKHOLM
STOCKHOLM, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - Serbian Minister of Finance and Economy Bozidar Djelic said in Stockholm on Monday that Serbia today has the lowest tax rate to the benefit of European companies and the strongest tax concessions for investments.
Minister Djelic spoke at a seminar entitled Serbian-Swedish Business Days in Stockholm, attended by a large group of Serbian businessmen, representatives of the Association of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs of Serbia and Montenegro, the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, and the Pancevo Regional Chamber of Commerce.
As many as 25 Swedish companies accepted the invitation to attend sent by the organizer, the SCG Embassy in Sweden.
Djelic presented to the Swedish partners the concrete results of the Serbian reforms, and tax and other concessions for investors.
POLITICAL DISTURBANCES DO NOT AFFECT PRIVATIZATION IN SERBIA - VLAHOVIC
BELGRADE, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Serbian Minister for economy and privatization Aleksandar Vlahovic on Monday said that the political disturbances in Serbia had not affected the privatization process, because Serbia is the leading country among the states in transition in carrying out reforms, while this year it will be the leading country in direct foreign investments, which are expected to amount to 1.2 billion dollars.
In a live broadcast by Radio Television of Serbia, Vlahovic warned that a new Serbian government, no matter who would form it after the regular or early elections, would make a catastrophic mistake by changing the current privatization concept.
According to his assessment, wages are expected to rise in late 2004 because the proposed Serbia's budget for next year will focus on the industry development, although the budget does not have a developmental character but a social one. Vlahovic assessed that the Serbian budget will maintain its social function as far as 2005.
GREECE TO INVEST EUR21 MILLION IN FIVE PROJECTS IN SERBIA
ATHENS, Nov. 3 (Beta) - Greece will invest over EUR21 million in five new, major projects in Serbia as part of the Greek Plan for Economic Reconstruction in the Balkans, said the Greek national news agency ANA. The most expensive of the five projects is the reconstruction of the highway emergency service in Belgrade. Greece will provide EUR8 million or 80 percent of the funds, while Serbia will raise two million euros or 20 percent of the investment, said ANA.
The Greek government will provide EUR3.2 million or 80 percent of the funding for the construction of a high voltage power plant Vranje II, and a further EUR2.3 million or 70 percent for the modernization of the Novi Sad refinery pipeline.
The program also envisions a EUR1.2 million investment in the construction of workers' apartments and a further EUR1.6 for the construction of apartment buildings near Nis.
GERMAN AGENCY TO ASSIST RECOVERY OF SERBIAN TEXTILE INDUSTRY
BELGRADE, Nov. 3 (Beta) - GTZ, the German government's technical assistance agency, will continue supporting a project that started last fall and aims to revitalize the Serbian textile industry, according to what Wolfgang Weiss, the head of the project, said in Belgrade on Nov. 3.
At the Serbian Chamber of Commerce Weiss arranged visits to eight Serbian textile makers in a bid to encourage Austrian and German businessmen to invest in the industry.
The companies involved are Mona, Nikola's, Novitet, Tatran, Elipsa, Diork, Kluz, and AMC.
He went on to say that GTZ's goal was to provide the textile industry with better equipment so that it could meet EU standards.
Blagomir Jovanovic, secretary of the Textile, Clothing, Leather, and Footwear Industry Association, said there were over 800 companies in the clothing industry, employing 70,000 people.
In the January - August period of this year Serbia exported $140 million worth of textiles, mostly to the EU.
Despite 14 percent export growth in this period "production has gone down 33 percent compared with last year," he added.
MINISTER VLAHOVIC OPENS FIVE EVENTS AT NOVI SAD FAIR
NOVI SAD, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Serbian Minister for Economy and Privatization Aleksandar Vlahovic on Tuesday opened five events at the Novi Sad Fair, where some 200 domestic and foreign exhibitors would take part until November 7.
The events are: 3rd International Finance Fair FINMAR, 12th International Information Technology Fair, 12th International Fair of Electronics and Energy Supply, 12th International Medicine and Stomatology Fair Promedica and the first Exhibition Safety and Fire Protection.
Over 40 banks from the SCG, Slovenia, Belgium and Greece, as well as representatives of the Belgrade Stock Exchange, insurance companies and brokers will take part in the FINMAR Fair.
KOSOVO - METOHIJA
SCG DELEGATION TO REQUEST IN CE HUMAN RIGHTS PROTECTION IN KOSOVO
BELGRADE, Nov. 3 (Beta) - During a meeting with heads of the Serbian municipalities in Kosovo on Nov. 3, members of the SerbiaMontenegro delegation with the Council of Europe (CE) Parliamentary Assembly pledged to keep in focus the issue of protecting human rights in the province.
SerbiaMontenegro Parliament speaker Dragoljub Micunovic said that the delegation would urge the CE Parliamentary Assembly to pass a resolution on protecting human rights in Kosovo, which would be binding for all CE member states.
According to Micunovic, the country's delegation would intensify its work so that human rights protection in Kosovo and Metohija would also be resolved at the CE level.
The head of the Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija, Nebojsa Covic, who attended the meeting, said that important issues pertaining to human rights violations, decentralization of authority, and the stand, as he put it, "on so-called parallel institutions," in Kosovo and Metohija had already been raised before the CE.
Covic stressed that "there are no parallel institutions" in Kosovo and Metohija, but that "there are only institutions, which are necessary for the survival and preservation of the Serbian minority."
Povratak (Return) coalition whip in the Kosovo Assembly, Dragisa Krstovic, said he hoped that the CE Parliamentary Assembly would take the necessary steps to enable the nonAlbanians in Kosovo to lead a normal life.
UNMIK CHIEF CONFERS WITH KOSOVO PRESIDENT, PARLIAMENT SPEAKER
PRISTINA, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - UNMIK chief Harri Holkeri conferred Monday in Pristina with Kosovo President Ibrahim Rugova and parliament Speaker Nexhad Daci on the current political and economic situation.
Rugova told the press that the talk focused on prospects for improving the standard of living in Kosovo and on the creation of working groups for pursuing dialogue with Belgrade, as well as on prospects for amending the Kosovo Constitutional Framework in order to grant greater powers to Kosovo institutions and make them more efficient.
Daci expressed his conviction that the privatization of Kosovo companies, which was halted recently, would be resumed without any hindrances, adding that he had proposed to Holkeri to head the privatization team.
FURTHER TRANSMISSION OF JURISDICTION ONTO INTERIM BODIES UNACCEPTABLE, KRSTOVIC
KOSOVSKA MITROVICA, Nov 4 (Tanjug) - Return coalition whip to Kosovo parliament Dragisa Krstovic told Tanjug on Tuesday that during the week, a meeting would be required with UNMIK chief Harri Holkeri, at which coalition's representatives would warn of the unacceptability that UNMIK jurisdictions be transferred onto interim Kosovo institutions.
"Interim Kosovo-Metohija institutions are not able to overtake the jurisdictions of the special representative of the UN Kosovo-Metohija mission general secretary," Krstovic said, and pointed out that the Return coalition would do everything, so that "the wishes on the transmission of the jurisdiction remained only wishes."
DEFENSE MINISTERS FROM NORDIC COUNTRIES VISIT KOSOVO
PRISTINA, Nov 3 (Tanjug) - The defense ministers of Nordic countries arrived in a two-day visit to Kosovo-Metohija on Monday in order to inspect their countries' troops within the multinational KFOR peacekeeping force.
We came here to see how to downsize KFOR troops and make them more suitable for UNMIK, while getting what we want - a peaceful solution for the people of Kosovo, Swedish Defense Minister Leni Bjoerklund told reporters at UNMIK headquarters.
Explaining the Nordic countries' role in Kosovo, she said that the West Balkans represented an important part of Europe and that Nordic countries were European countries and added that Sweden would wait for NATO's assessment regarding the downsizing of KFOR.
In addition to Bjoerklund, the delegation is made up of Defense Ministers Svend Aage Jensby of Denmark, Seppo Kaeaeriaeinen of Finland, Kristin Krohn Devold of Norway as well as a representative of Iceland, news agencies reported.
The delegation met with UNMIK head, former Finnish prime minister Harri Holkeri, and new KFOR commander Lt. Gen. Holger Kammerhoff of Germany. They also visited Nordic battalions within KFOR. Finland has 800, Sweden 700, Norway 400 and Denmark 350 troops in Kosovo-Metohija.
NGOs TO PARTICIPATE IN WORK OF PARLIAMENT COMMITTEES, SAYS KRIVOKAPIC PODGORICA, Nov. 3 (Tanjug) - Montenegrin parliament President Ranko Krivokapic on Monday announced NGOs representatives would in future take part in the work of parliament committees. Krivokapic informed NGO Group for Changes Executive Director Nebojsa Medojevic about this at the first consultative meeting on cooperation of NGOs and state institutions in the process of European integration.
The meeting was attended by Montenegrin Deputy Premier Dragan Djurovic.