EUROPEAN BANK FOR RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT APPOINTED ME AS MEMBER OF THE ADVISORY GROUP
"TRANSITION TO TRANSITION"
Upon the invitation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), I became a member of the High Level Advisory Group, named „Transition to transition”. This group consists of eight leading European reformers, such as Radoslav Šikorski, the Polish foreign minister, Jan Fischer, former Czech Prime Minister, Ivan Miklos, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of the Slovak Republic and Kemal Dervis, former Turkish Minister of Finance. The main goal of the group is to help new Arab governments in Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia and Egypt in their democratic and economic reforms.
It is my great honor to be a member of this group and I hope that my experience gained in previous years, not only in Serbia but also in Poland and Russia, will help the work of the group. On February 27th I will visit Casablanca, upon the invitation of the EBRD, in order to meet with their new government. I will use this opportunity also to promote Serbia and the Serbian industry.
17 January, 2012
While I was in Pirot, first I had a meeting with the Mayor of Pirot Vladan Vasić. We discussed the current situation in Pirot, important projects, the ability to bring in natural gas to this municipality, as well as the construction of Corridor X highway.
After meeting with the mayor, I met with the management of ,,Tigar” company, in order to announce that the first tranche of a loan from the APEX IV credit line will be 2.7 million euros with a maturity of eight years at an annual interest rate of 5.5 percent. This loan will allow the ambitious plan to increase production and exports by 80 percent tobecome a reality. Till the end of the first quarter of this year, “Tigar” will receive from the EIB an additional 4 million euros. This way, the program of support for exporters and small and medium enterprises through favorable loans from the European Investment Bank, which I initiated before leaving the Government, will be operational.
In Pirot, I also had a meeting with the representatives of the largest companies in the Pirot District (Bela Palanka, Dimitrovgrad, Pirot, Babušnica). We discussed their experiences and problems in the market, especially related to export. I also visited the Handicraft Society for making rugs and souvenirs “Ladies Heart” and ordered two kilims. I am very pleased with the fact that the geographical origin of this product is protected. I am sure that the Pirot kilim can become a part of Serbian souvenirs, and the same goes for cheese from Pirot, whose origin is still not protected.
SERBIA IS AN ASSOCIATED MEMBER OF CERN
Serbia has becomean associate member ofthe European Organization forNuclear Research(CERN), on January 10,this year. Agreement between the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) and the Republic of Serbia concerning the granting of the status of associate membership as the pre-stage to membership at CERNwas signed bySerbian PresidentBorisTadić, on behalf of the Republic of Serbia, andthe DirectorGeneral ofCERN prof Rolf-Dieter Heuer, who invited me to thesigning ceremony.
Associate membership in CERN is very important for our country, because it will allow Serbia to increase its scientific participation in the largest research endeavor in history. Besides science, this new status will enable Serbia to benefit from CERN’s educational programs and Serbian industry will be able to participate, in equal terms, in all tenders published by this international organization.
Serbia’s accession to CERN was initiated on March 4th, 2009 when I, as the Minister of Science and Technological Development, sent a letter of intent to the Director General.
Over the next few months I will travel around Serbia. In the past, because of the nature of my work, I was more involved in activities abroad. Now, I will travel to meet the citizens more closely and to see their specific problems in order to formulate concrete measures for improvement of the current situation and a better future for Serbia. The experience I gained in previous years confirms that it is necessary to find a way for a more straightforward application of the principles of accountability and meritocracy in our country. These two values, accountability and meritocracy, are crucial for distinguishing successful from unsuccessful states. Serbia deserves to be a successful one.