President Boris Tadic has hailed it as “crucially important for ordinary people”… Serbia has been set on the path towards eventual membership of the European Union. And yet this was a simple initialling, of a key first agreement that lays out the reforms needed.
Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn put his initials on the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA), on behalf of the EU. Serbia’s chief EU negotiator, Deputy Prime Minister Bozidar Djelic, also took part in the brief ceremony in Brussels.
He highlighted related moves: “The Serbian Parliament has ratified the agreement of visa facilitation and readmissions. Those are two complementary sides of our ‘other’ pact with the European Union, so as to insure that our citizens can more and more travel without impediments in the European continent.”
EU officials deny any link between Serbia’s membership drive and resolving the fate of Kosovo, yet they hope the SAA initialling will boost pro-EU feeling in Belgrade.