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DAILY SURVEY 08.06.2017.
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SERBIA

DACIC: BERLIN PLUS PLAN MUST NOT BECOME EXCUSE TO LEAVE US IN EU'S WAITING ROOM

BELGRADE, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - Serbian acting prime minister and foreign minister Ivica Dacic has said that Germany's plan for the West Balkans, Berlin Plus, must not become a political excuse for the EU to keep Serbia "in its waiting-room." Dacic told the June 7 issue of the Novosti daily that the announcements from Berlin are commendable, but that the plan "must not become a new mirage for us." "Without a clear outlook but also without subtantive economic benefit, it's unlikely that countries in the region will remain on the European path and preserve stability. The accession process is complex and long, and mostly hinges on politics, but it is clear to everyone that without a stable Balkans there can be no stable or safe Europe," said Dacic. German Foreign Minister Siegmar Gabriel earlier presented the new plan for the West Balkans, the Berlin Plus agenda, as an additional encouragement to the Berlin Process, for the purpose of turning the region in an attractive investment zone and bring the local population a visibly better life.

DACIC EXPRESSES CONDOLENCES TO IRAN AND MYANMAR

BELGRADE, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - The acting prime minister and foreign minister of Serbia, Ivica Dacic, on June 7 expressed condolences to Iran because of terrorist attacks and to Myanmar because of the crash of a military airplane. Dacic sent the telegram of condolences to the vice-president of Iran, Eshaq Jahangiri, because of the terrorist attacks in the parliament building and in the mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini, stated the Foreign Ministry. Dacic condemned those and all other acts of terrorism, the only purpose of which is "killing people, causing chaos and an attack on the values of modern world civilization" and stated that, on behalf of the Serbian government, he conveyed "the unreserved readiness to make the maximum contribution to eradicating this biggest evil of our time, in cooperation with you and all others who, like us, condemn such barbaric acts."
Dacic also expressed condolences to the state counsellor and foreign minister of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, because of the crash of the military plane with more than 100 passengers and crew on board.

U.S. COMPANY AMETEK OPENS BUSINESS CAMPUS IN SUBOTICA

SUBOTICA, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - The U.S. manufacturer of micro-motors Ametek opened a "business campus" in Subotica on June 7, where 500 people will be employed. The opening of the business center on an area of 10,000 square meters was attended by Serbian president Aleksandar Vucic, Minister for Commerce Goran Knezevic, U.S. Ambassador Kyle Scott, and the heads of the government and assembly of Vojvodina, Igor Mirovic and Istvan Pastor. Vucic said the Serbian government had not given Ametek any subsidies and that he was grateful that this company was cooperating with a large number of suppliers in Serbia. In Vucic's words, there are 5,490 people working in the industrial zone in Subotica, where Ametek's new investment is located. Ametek has been operating in Subotica since 2012, when the factory was opened by the German company Dunkermotoren, which is a member of this group. The new Ametek factory in the city was opened in 2015 and it produces motors for small home appliances. Ametek, with its head office in Philadelphia, has an annual turnover of around five billion dollars and employs more than 40,000 people.

ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION CONFERENCE IN BELGRADE

BELGRADE, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - A conference entitled "State of the Planet Information Day - Overview and Prospects", organized by the Serbian Ministry for Agriculture and Environment Protection and the Embassy of Morocco, started in Belgrade on June 7. Parliament Speaker Maja Gojkovic stated during her speech at the opening that the attitude toward nature in Serbia had to be more responsible and that concrete measures were needed for that, the statement reads. Gojkovic said the role of the Serbian parliament was important because it adopts laws, cares for their quality and supervises their enforcement, and ratifies international agreements, like the recently ratified Doha Amendment and the Paris Agreement. She added that Serbia had yet to open Chapter 27 in the EU membership negotiations, about environment protection. Gojkovic recollected that South East Europe was facing an increasing danger from floods, drought, extreme temperatures, earthquakes, landslides and storms. Other participants in the gathering are the state secretary of the Ministry for Agriculture and Environment Protection, Stana Bozovic, the ambassadors of Morocco and France and the officials of the EU Delegation in Serbia.

MIHAJLOVIC: BELGRADE, BUDAPEST WILL BE CONNECTED TO GREEK PORTS

BUDAPEST, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Zorana Mihajlovic said in Budapest, on June 7 that Serbia, Hungary and China had agreed to begin talks with other states, especially Macedonia and Greece, as soon as possible, for the purpose of modernizing the full length of the railway to the Port of Piraeus, near Athens. "We will begin negotiations on how to make the practical link between the Belgrade-Budapest project and the Port of Piraeus in Greece, because the essence of the entire project is a corridor to connect us, that is, to allow Serbia, first of all, better transit from Greece to Europe itself. Therefore it isn't enough just to have that railway modernized, we must have railroads toward the south," Mihajlovic stated after the meeting of Chinese, Hungarian and Serbian officials on reconstructing the Belgrade-Budapest railway. The next trilateral meeting will take place in Beijing in January, she announced, and in the meantime, steps will be taken to start the reconstruction of the Belgrade-Budapest railway and toward preparing for the southern section, to Greece. Mihajlovic stressed that Serbia would virtually be ready this summer to begin work on modernizing the railway to allow speeds of 200 kilometers per hour. Mihajlovic said work on the Stara Pazova-Novi Sad stretch, financed from a Russian loan, would begin in June, while work on the Belgrade-Stara Pazova stretch should start in November. The financing deal for the latter was inked during a recent visit by a Serbian delegation to Beijing. "We're working on it and expect to sign the commercial contract for the third section, to the Hungarian border, in November, and then we'll be able to say that Serbia is completely ready with its designs and technical documentation," said Mihajlovic, who is also Serbia's minister of construction, transport and infrastructure.

MEMORANDUM ON BUILDING OBRENOVAC-NEW BELGRADE DISTANCE HEATING SYSTEM

BELGRADE, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - Representatives of the Serbian Energy Ministry, the City of Belgrade and the Nikola Tesla thermal power plant, and the Power Construction Corporation of China on June 7 signed a memorandum of understanding on the project to build the Obrenovac-New Belgrade district heating system. Serbian Energy Minister Aleksandar Antic said using hot water from the Nikola Tesla plant to heat New Belgrade would save EUR43 million in gas imports for the Belgrade Heating Plants. Belgrade Mayor Sinisa Mali said the tentative value of the project was EUR200 million, and that it was environmentally and economically profitable. "Since EUR43 million will be saved on gas yearly, the project will have paid for itself in five to six years," said Mali, specifying that the project would be funded by China and that the work would be done by the Power Construction Corporation, though it may use domestic contractors. Chinese Ambassador to Serbian Li Manchang said the construction of the district heating system was the first of several projects arranged by Aleksandar Vucic during his May visit to China as prime minister.

SERBIA GETTING EUR95.1 MILLION FROM EU IN FIRST PART OF IPA DEAL

BELGRADE, 7 June 2017 (Beta) - Serbia and the EU on June 7 signed the first part of the financial IPA deal for 2016 for Serbia, granting Serbia EUR95.1 million from the EU, of the total value of the deal of EUR166.4 million, the EU Info Center in Belgrade announced. The first portion of the agreement was signed by Jadranka Joksimovic, Serbia's minister in charge of EU integration, and EU Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn, and the EU Delegation to Serbia will now disburse the funds on Serbia's behalf. The instrument for pre-accession assistance is a focused mechanism created by the EU to provide help to West Balkan countries and Turkey during the process of accession. EUR48.7 million of the 95.1 million will go toward encouraging competition in Serbia, 35.8 million toward helping Serbia's EU integration, five million will go to the justice system and 5.6 million will be injected into other sectors, the press release reads. Before the end of the year, other parts of the IPA 2016 financial deal for Serbia, worth EUR71.3 million, will also have been signed. Of this amount, 28 million will go to coordinated and efficient border management, 27.4 million to reforming education, while 15.9 million is the part of the financial package whose implementation will be managed by Serbia, the EU Info Center's release said.

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