The Prime Minister of Serbia, Mr Aleksandar Vučić and H. E. Mr Christer Asp the Ambassador of Swedento Serbia,met today in the Prime Minister’s officeto discuss the four new agreements of Swedish environmental support to Serbia.
The four agreements amount to approximately 9.5 million euros and will be implemented by the Serbian Ministry of Agriculture and Environment during the coming four years.
“These projects will help to pave the way for the EU negotiations on environment issues, but equally important, they will contribute to the quality of life for the citizens of Serbia” said the Swedish ambassador.
The cooperation between Serbia and Sweden in this area is key for the EU accession process. Most importantly, it provides better services within waste water and solid waste to people in Serbia. It also helps making Serbia a cleaner place that can better attract foreign investment and tourism.
Sweden and Serbia have a long history of cooperation within the environmental sector. Over time Serbia and Sweden have become truly strategic partners within this field with a cooperation that is closely linked to Serbia’s preparations for EU-approximation. Including other ongoing support in this sector, Swedish disbursements for the coming years are estimated to be around 3 million EUR on an annual basis.
Environmental issues are an important part of the EU accession process and the Swedish support to Serbia focuses on some of the most central issues of that process, such as infrastructure for waste management and water treatment. Sweden is one of the biggest donors in the environmental sector, and support is given to both ministries and state institutions. The Swedish Chemicals Agency and Swedish Environmental Protection Agency participate in the implementation of Swedish support to the environmental sector.
The four agreements that are to be signed:
- Support within the Environmental Accession Programme (ENVAP) that will facilitate Serbia’s continued preparations for EU negotiations.
- Support to the environmental infrastructure programme (EISP) through which Sweden is supporting Serbia’s strategic investment planning in the environmental sector, the facilitation of local project preparations and policy development. This includes capacity building of the Ministry’s department responsible for the Green Fund and policies for facilitating private sector participation in environmental infrastructure development.
- Support to a new project preparation facility (PEID), managed by the Ministry, for developing technical documentation and permits for environmental infrastructure projects enabling them to be financed by European Commission or other funding sources.
- Support to the Ministry’s chemicals management department for meeting legislative requirements for EU accession.