Sunday, 23 April 2017. PDF Print E-mail
Days of Friendship between Slovenia and Serbia – Remarks by Minister Dacic
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Minister Dacic attended the event Days of Slovenian-Serbian Friendship"Your Excellency, the Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia, Mr. Gasparic,

Dear President of the Idrija Club,

Dear guests,

Ladies and gentlemen,

I was pleased to receive an invitation to support today's event, together with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia Karl Erjavec, in the capacity as honorary sponsor. The event is organized within the Days of Friendship between Serbia and Slovenia, by the Belgrade/Danube Rotary Club, Serbia and Idrija Club, Slovenia.

As Serbian Foreign Minister, I have the duty to work to foster close and all-round relations between the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Slovenia. At the same time, I would like to emphasize that today's event gives me special pleasure, having in mind that my distinguished colleague, Mr. Erjavec and I share the bonds of personal friendship, which, I believe, has contributed to the increasingly successful, close and diversified cooperation between our two countries.

On the occasion of my recent official visit to Ljubljana, that took place on 22 February 2017, a very positive development trend of cooperation between our two countries has been cemented. At the same time, the overall relations between Serbia and Slovenia have reached a level that may serve as a role-model for successful good-neighbourly cooperation, which is not very common in our region where the political elites are, unfortunately, often held hostage to the bad part of our common past. The countries of the region can and must look to the future together, which is a fact that the current developments are repeatedly reminding us of – let me but recall the migrant crisis, or the latest developments related to the Agrokor Group.

The mainstay of the relations existing between Serbia and Slovenia is the now already regular practice of holding joint Government sessions. The third session was held in Belgrade between 23 and 24 October last year, with the accompanying Business Forum, which brought together around 120 entrepreneurs from the two countries. This practice has turned out to be very successful. In addition to contributing to the maintenance of the high-level political dialogue, the meetings have also been an excellent opportunity for us to jointly reflect not only on what has been done so far, but also on the agreements concerning concrete projects, in order to set in motion the untapped potential for cooperation both in the sector of the economy, and in other areas.

Serbia perceives Slovenia as an important trading partner and a significant investor. The constant growth of trade exchange (which last year almost reached EUR 1 billion), and our mutual commitment to expand cooperation in this area (through joint performance in third markets, stepping up cooperation in areas of tourism, agriculture, etc.), are giving us reasons to be very satisfied. Serbia is the major investment destination for economic entities from Slovenia, and the positive trend of a growing number of investments made by Serbian companies in Slovenia is particularly encouraging.

Considering the positive sentiments between our two peoples and the current level of relations between the two countries, there is room for establishing non-institutional forms of cooperation, and this event testifies to the fact.

I would like in particular to support the "green mobility" concept, presented within the Days of Friendship between Serbia and Slovenia, which also includes the establishment of the Green Mobility Centre for Innovation. The Centre, aimed at the implementation of creative and eco-friendly solutions for ultra-fast electric car chargers along the motorway within the "Green Balcanica" project, is supposed to interconnect several countries of Central and South-East Europe, starting from Munich and Salzburg, to Ljubljana, Zagreb, Belgrade and Skopje. I am confident that this project, initiated by Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar and the EU Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc, will be something more than one in a series of projects launched with a similar intent. I believe that the project will accelerate Serbia's EU integration process, not only symbolically, but also in reality.

Distinguished guests, dear friends,

Along with the expressions of sincere gratitude to everyone who actively contributed to this event's organization, I would like to use this opportunity to extend my cordial congratulations to the Wind Orchestra of the Idrija Miners, which is celebrating its 325th establishment anniversary – this fact makes it the oldest wind orchestra in Europe".