The European Union’s outgoing chief diplomat in Serbia, Sem Fabrizi, said he expected the EU to open new clusters in accession negotiations with Belgrade before the end of the year.
Fabrizi told the state-run TV station that “the EU saw a positive message at the conference in June. Providing reforms resume, Serbia should open new clusters by the end of the year. That’s a possibility, and that’s what focus should be on.”
Speaking about criticism related to the rule of law, media freedom and the fight against organised crime and corruption in Serbia, Fabrizi reiterated those were priority areas.
“It’s the most difficult to make progress in these areas that takes time. The new methodology (in the accession talks) will expedite the entire process and make it easier to follow progress through clusters,” Fabrizi said.
He added Serbia’s progress in the second half of 2021 and the first of 2022 would be concrete.
Brussels did not open any chapter in negotiations with Belgrade in a year and a half. Fabrizi sees the coronavirus pandemic and the implementation of the new methodology as the reasons for that.
He added the dialogue with Pristina on the normalisation of relations was a critical element for Serbia’s EU membership and said Brussels was doing everything in its power for the talks between Serbia and Kosovo to succeed.
“The last round of the dialogue was probably the most difficult of all. The two sides must be committed to the dialogue, and it is a crucial element for regional stability,” Fabrizi said.
This post is also available in: Italiano