Estonia will continue to support Serbia’s endeavors for integration in the European Union, Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić said on Tuesday.
There is also full agreement between Belgrade and Talinn regarding EU integration of the entire Western Balkans, Jeremić said during his visit to Estonia.
Political differences in Western Balkans must not hinder the strategic commitment of the region’s countries to EU integration, it was noted during the talks.
Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet met with Jeremić and stated that Serbia was getting good results in its bid to join the European Union, thanks to implementing key reforms and cooperation with the Hague Tribunal, Beta news agency reports.
“Estonia is a supporter of the European Union’s open-door policy so that nations that share common values and principles with our member states can be included in the union,” Paet said, as quoted in a press release from the Estonian Foreign Ministry.
Paet said Estonia recognized Serbia’s steps toward the EU and fully supported its efforts at reform. He also stressed the importance of the EU’s decision to lift visas for the citizens of Serbia, Montenegro and Macedonia.
According to him, the EU’s December decision to begin to apply its interim trade agreement with Serbia was also important in that country’s European integration process.
Speaking about economic relations between the two countries, Paet stated that, though Estonia had closer economic ties with Serbia than with other West Balkan countries, there was great potential to advance the relations further.
“Estonian entrepreneurs are interested in, for example, cooperation with Serbia in the energy sector,” Paet stated, adding that “Estonia and Serbia could develop energy-related cooperation in the oil shale industry.”
“We hope that business contacts will be further inspired when the agreement for the avoidance of double taxation between Estonia and Serbia comes into effect,” the Estonian minister said.
According to the announcement from the Estonian ministry, Paet and Jeremić also discussed the situation in the West Balkans.