Daily Survey

Belgrade, April 6, 2012



CAIRO, April 05 (Tanjug) - Foreign ministers of Serbia and Egypt Vuk Jeremic and Mohamed Kamel Amr said on Thursday the two countries had close views on most international issues, as well as Serbia's bid to preside over the UN General Assembly.
Amr stated after the meeting in Cairo that Jeremic had informed him about the development of the situation in terms of Serbia's application for EU membership, adding that it was going very well. According to Amr, the views of Serbia and Egypt on a series of international issues are similar, and the bilateral cooperation is developing well too.
Egypt is one of Serbia's best friends in the world, Jeremic stressed. He added that the meeting with Amr included a discussion on how to improve the two countries' cooperation, especially in economy.
According to Jeremic, the two officials also talked about tourism, since Egypt is one of the most sought after destinations by Serbian tourists.
The meeting also included cooperation in education and scholarship exchange, so Egyptians could study in Serbia and vice versa, he remarked.
Jeremic stated the two countries' had identical views regarding many of the world issues. Serbia tries to follow the advice of the Arab League and especially Egypt when it comes to the situation in the region, the Serbian minister pointed out.
Commenting on the situation in Syria, Jeremic said Serbia regretted to hear about the great suffering of the Syrian people and that it supported Arab solutions to Arab problems. Serbia's position concerning the Palestinian issue has not and will not change, Jeremic noted. He said Serbia supported everything that was not a step backwards, but forwards, and was against any developments that would undermine stability.
Serbia's diplomatic presence in Egypt dates back to 1908.
Today's cooperation between the two countries is based on their very good relations during the former Yugoslavia, when Egypt was led by Gamal Abdel Nasser (19181970) and Yugoslavia by Josip Broz Tito (18921980).
Cairo officials still refer to the period as the golden age of the two countries' relations.
With its 85 million people, Egypt has the largest population of all the Arab states and the third largest in Africa, behind Nigeria and Ethiopia. In recent years, one of the most obvious manifestations of the two countries' friendship to the public in Serbia has been Egypt's view regarding the secession of Serbia's southern province of Kosovo. Egypt has not recognized Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence.
Egypt supported Serbia's territorial integrity and sovereignty in the Arab League, African Union, Organization of Islamic Countries, Nonaligned Movement, UN and other international fora.


CAIRO, April 05 (Tanjug) - Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic has stated that he hopes a significant number of the Arab League members will support the country's UN General Assembly presidency bid.
After meeting Arab League Secretary General Nabil Al Araby in Cairo, Jeremic said that Serbia has a long tradition of good relations with the Arab League.
The League comprises 22 member states from Northeast Africa and the Middle East.
Serbia is a candidate for next year's UNGA presidency and therefore it was very important to exchange opinions on current developments in the world. I believe that there is a high level of mutual understanding and I hope that a significant number of the Arab League countries will support Serbia's candidacy, Jeremic told Tanjug.
Many of the things that are happening in the Arab world are reflection of global issues.
Asked to comment on the situation in Syria, Jeremic said that Serbia has supported the efforts of the Arab League to establish peace and democracy in the country.
While in Cairo, Jeremic will have talks with his host, Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr, and meet with a group of prominent Egyptian businessmen.


BELGRADE, April 05 (Beta) - Serbian Parliament Speaker Slavica Djukic Dejanovic, who is the acting president of Serbia, on April 5 sent Easter greetings to the Archbishop of Belgrade Stanislav Hocevar, and all believers and citizens who celebrate this holiday on April 8.
The deputy prime minister of Serbia and interior minister, Ivica Dacic, also sent his greetings to all those who celebrate this Christian holiday on April 8. Greetings were also sent by the speaker of the Vojvodina Assembly, Sandor Egeresi, the Vojvodina secretary for regulations, administration and ethnic communities, Andor Deli, and the mayor of Novi Sadi, Igor Pavlicic.
The Easter mass for believers who celebrate the holiday according to the Gregorian calendar, will be held on Sunday, April 8, at the Church of Christ the King in Krunska street in Belgrade. The mass will be served by the Archbishop of Belgrade Stanislav Hocevar.


BELGRADE, April 05 (Tanjug) - Serbia has the capacity to surpass the Netherlands' exports of food and agricultural products which amounts to EUR 62 billion, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Adriano Martins said Thursday.
At a conference dedicated to the potential of the local agriculture sector, Martins said Serbia is the only EU candidate country which has a surplus in agricultural trade, adding export of these products rose 20 percent last year and accounted for 50 percent of the country's total exports.
Minister of Agriculture and Trade Dusan Petrovic opened the conference by saying that all policy measures are aimed at increasing agricultural production of both crops and livestock, and increasing export and GDP. He said 800,000 families are involved in agriculture is Serbia and for 400,000 farming is the primary source of income, so the Ministry's and the government's goal is to help the development of this branch which represents one of the pillars of the economy. Petrovic reminded that Serbia exported USD 2.7 billion in agricultural products last year and expressed expectation it would exceed this number by a comfortable margin in 2012.
Danish Ambassador to Serbia Mette Kjuel Nielsen said Serbia had enormous potential for the development of agriculture but needed to foster entrepreneurial spirit and innovation. She said renewable energy sources such as biogas and biomass were a great resource.
United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director Susan Fritz said the organization has been active in Serbia since 2007 and has worked with 200 companies, enabling the creation of 7,000 jobs. Thanks to USAID's support, these companies have recorded revenue of USD 118 million, one quarter of which is export.



BELGRADE, April 05 (Beta) - In his resignation letter, delivered to the parliament speaker on April 5, Boris Tadic said his decision had been guided by the highest state interests so as to give all the institutions a new mandate needed for pursuing the EU path, economic development and the preservation of the country's territorial integrity.
Tadic further said it was far more appropriate to enable the citizens to decide which way Serbia should continue in a single day, instead of wasting the entire year on elections.
"I honestly believe that the new state institutions should pursue the path Serbia is taking, the EU path, the path by which we are defending all national interests and the country's integrity, at the same time offering the chance for economic prosperity, new investments, new jobs and a better living standard for all our citizens," Tadic stressed.


BELGRADE, April 05 (Beta) - The presidential elections in Serbia will be held on May 6, parliament speaker Slavica DjukicDejanovic has decided.
On April 5, the speaker signed the document scheduling the presidential vote, after receiving the resignation of President Boris Tadic around noon, terminating his mandate.
The presidential vote will be held on May 6, along with the parliamentary and local elections.
As of April 5, the parliament speaker will perform the duty of the President of the Republic.
The speaker stressed that the state institutions would continue to function and that she would discharge the duties of president responsibly and in line with the laws and Constitution.
Asked when she would move to the presidential office, DjukicDejanovic replied that she would perform the duty as the parliament speaker, as she was delegated only some presidential authorities and duties. The speaker added that she would only organize certain meetings in the presidential office in Andricev Venac street, stressing that her work place would continue to be in the parliament.



SMEDEREVO, April 05 (Tanjug) - Serbian President Boris Tadic said Thursday the latest incident in Kosovo Wednesday's attack on a Serbian government delegation in Pristina is the most obvious reason why he weighed the decision on presidential elections for so long and serves as a warning to institutions, the government and parliament to maintain the present level of security.
Asked to comment on the security situation in Kosovo, Tadic said:
"There is no more obvious reason why it took me so long to decide what to do with my term. Everything in the world has two sides positive and negative, nothing is just positive," Tadic said.
"We have done our best to lower risk of incidents, but we are not naive to think there will be none. I am the president of Serbia for a few more hours and I will do my utmost. But now it is up to the government and parliament to maintain this level of security," Tadic said.
He noted a similar incident occurred during his visit to Kosovo, when his car was stoned.
"It is important these incidents do not escalate into conflict. This is another provocation from the Albanian side in Kosovo," Tadic said. "I will not dramatize this, but everyone has to know so that people can be protected," he said.


BRUSSELS, April 05 (Tanjug) - EU facilitator for the talks between Belgrade and Pristina Robert Cooper condemned on Thursday the attack on a Serbian delegation convoy in Pristina, describing it as an act not in the spirit of dialogue.
The EU condemns the attack on the Serbian delegation convoy in Pristina that occurred on Wednesday, Cooper said in a statement delivered to Tanjug. Such an act is not in the spirit of dialogue, he pointed out, adding that the delegation was part of the work group for the implementation of the agreements reached in the EU facilitated talks.
The EU will continue to act as a mediator in the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, he remarked, adding that the two sides were set to meet on Thursday to discuss further implementation of the agreements.
It should be clear that the talks are not just about making agreements, but, even more importantly, about their implementation and true benefit to the people on both sides, Cooper stated. This implementation is also key to each side's progress towards the EU, he noted.
Two vehicles with members of a Serbian government delegation were stoned in Pristina on Wednesday. The delegation was in Kosovo to work on the implementation of the agreements reached in the talks between Belgrade and Pristina. One member of the delegation was injured lightly in the incident.