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20 May 2021 Minister Selakovic presented the new e-Consulate service

A new service of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs "e-Consulate" was presented in Belgrade today, intendend for foreign citizens who apply for a visa and aspire to come to Serbia to work.                     

On that occasion, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia Nikola Selakovic said that this service was one of the indicators of good development of our country, which, ,as he pointed out, was becoming a magnet for serious foreign companies, which brought a large number of workers from other countries to work in Serbia.                   

"Not to be pretentious, but completely realistic, this service represents a turning point in the functioning of our system. E-Consulate and digitalization of the procedure for issuing work visas for foreign citizens who want to work in Serbia, is the first electronic service offered by the Foreign Ministry, and I can promise you that this is indeed our first, but by no means the last e-sevice", Selakovic emphasized.                    

The Head of Serbian diplomacy pointed out that "e-Consulate" reflected the modernization of an extremely important segment of the activities of diplomatic and consular missions of Serbia, and that we were actually talking about something that was essential for the further development processes of our country.                  

The Minister recalled that, when the President of the Republic visited the construction site of the Moravian Corridor, he was told that some construction works were delayed because Bechtel company was not issued work visas on time.      

"The moment we saw that and heard the President, I alerted the services in the Ministry. We were suprised, as we knew that the issuance of visas in Turkey had a good dynamic, and then we determined that it was actually workers from Bangladesh who applied for a visa through our Embassy in India, where we have a problem with staff shortage", the Minister explained.                    

As he added, this is a demanding and laborious task, each of our employees had to receive the documentation on paper, check it, then request additional information, and only then forward it.        

"Today, this has been fantastically perfected for our consular officers, all that documentation is submitted in electronic form. We used to have two filters to check the documentation, now we actually have threee. And the work is significantly more efficient", Selakovic pointed out.                   

As he emphasized, this is a service which was promised less than four months ago and it becomes aviailable on Monday, in 95 diplomatic and consular missions of Serbia, i.e. in all our embassies and consulates general.      

The biggest result of that endeavor, the Minister pointed out, apart from the advantage it would bring in the future work, was the fact that it was not a project of one state body, but a joint endeavor of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, IT and eGovernment Office, General Secretariat of the Government, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Labor, Employment, Veterans and Social Affairs, Natinal Employment Service.                     

"We did an extgremely good job in record time. This is to the pride our Ministry, to the pride of the entire state. I am convincend that in the period ahead, we will further modernize our affairs and make Serbia one of the few countries that has such mechanisms and such state-of-the-art provision of consular services", Selakovic said.                       

Speaking about the"e-Consulate" portal itself, the Minister explained that there is a cartoon of Nikola Tesla and the building of the old railway station with one crane, which actually symbolizes a historical fact - that Tesla was in Belgrade in the year when it was built.                     

"Today it is the place behind which the Belgrade of the future is rising, and what we managed to do together is an indicator of something that is the future of Serbia, the development of artificial intelligence, IT and creating conditions for more people to live and arrive here in Serbia in the future seeking good life and employment", concluded the Minister.                       

The Director of the Office for IT and eGovernment, Mihailo Jovanovic, said that this was the first time that e-service were focused on foreign citizens, which was the case with our citizens so far.             

In the period from 1 January 2019 to 17 May this year, the most applications for Serbian visas were submitted at the Embassy in Beijing, 6,766 applications, then in New Delhi - 2,973, Shanghai 2,115, Tokyo 1,798, and Cairo 1,756.                   

In that period, 1,270 requests were submitted in Algiers, 1,095 in Jakarta, and 1,077 in Beirut.                      

In terms of their nationality, Serbian D visa for employment is most requested by citizens of China - 9,516 applications, followed by India 1,955, and Ukraine - 673.


8 May 2021 Vucic: We consider Europe our home

President Vucic said tonight that the visionary idea of Robert Schuman brought a true victory of the new trust after the Second World War and faith in the unification of differences in peace and solidarity, with the message that Serbia has that faith, as well as hope that it will become a country that will be gladly regarded in the European family of nations.         

Congratulating everyone in Serbia and the EU on Europe Day, Vucic reminded that 9 May was also the day when the great victory of freedom is celebrated, which was won with huge sacrifices.                     

"While the horror of war were still fresh in memory and Europe was healing the wounds of World War II, it also had peple like Robert Schuman who understood that future can only be created based on the reconciliation of nations and their unity", Vucic said at the reception on the occasion of Europe Day.                      

He pointed out that the European peoples dared to see the recent adversaries as future allies.   

"Schuman's visionary idea that peace will be preserved, if the creative forces are commensurate with the dangers that threaten, that Europe will emerge from specific achievements, has brought a tru victory of newly found trust and faith in uniting differences in peace and solidarity", Vucic said.                

He said tghat Serbia, although it did not always look like that, had that faith, as well as the hope that our concrete achievements, on the long and not easy parth to EU membership, would be adequately valued.                      

"And that with your help, support and criticism, Serbia will become a country that you will be happy to see in the European community of nations. I believe that with our support, help and criticism, we would also contribute to the EU becoming an even better place to live", Vucic said.                            

Full membership of the EU, with a compromise solution to the issue of Kosovo and Metohija, is a way to achieve the goal and make Serbia orderly and successful, which would mean that we are on a good, European parth, the President of Serbia said.                        

Vucic said that we still had to make a lot of efforts in reforms, not because someone is asking us to do that, but because we know that it brings us and the country a benefit.                        

He also pointed out that the reforms in the rule of law were exceptionally important, which were now being approached with much more responsibility.                

"In our country, there is a race in who will say that they are more in favour of Europe, while saying under the table that they are the least for Europe. Europe does not belong only to those who would like to use European money, it does not belong to those in the government who say that they are on the European path because they believe that they are in that way preventing the opposition from coming to power, not to those who think this is the only way to get hold of power. It belongs to all of us, but we cannot take from Europe only what we like without acceptingwhat we do not like", he explained.                          

I know, he added, how difficult it is to us in Serbia to hear criticism concerning Kosovo as well as in the field of th rule of law.                         

"I saw for myself that we are the ones who did not pay enough attention and apply a dedicated approach to the burning problems in that area. I believe that with greater zeal we will be able to change the attitude of the citizens of Serbia and gain greater respect from the EU for what we are doing", he pointed out.                        

President Vucic also pointed out that the EU was undoubtedly the largest donor, investor, and by far the most important trade partner of Serbia, and recalled that about two-thirds of all trade and even more service activities were EU related and that these were facts, whether someone liked it or not.                     

He pointed out that seven years ago when he became the Prime Minister, three times fewer people were employed in cmpanies that came from EU countries than today.                                

"Despite all the problems, it shows how much we managed to do together and make good results, to provide people with life, security at work, to show that we can take care of them more", Vucic said, noting the great EU assistance in the field of education.              

He said that during the recent visit to the EU, which he assessed as the best one so far, Serbia received additional support for infrastructure projects, primarily for modernization, i.e. essentially the construction of a new Belgrade-Nis-Presevo railway.              

He said that this was confirmed in the letter of the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, pointing out that this was the best letter he had ever received from Brussels.                  

"I am grateful to Von der Leyen for pointing out that this is a game-changer in our relations. It is a turning point because that support exceeds everything we have done together when you look at the scale, strength and significance of that project", he said.                       

He said that Serbia and its citizens considere Europe as their home and that is why we wanted to give our best contribution to peace through regional connectivity, the Berlin Conference and mini-Schengen.                 

"Encouraged by the message of European officials, I hope that I will be able to host them sooon so that we can discuss the further acceleration of our European path", Vucic concluded.                    

Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Serbia Sem Fabrizi hosted a reception tonight on the occasion of marking 9 May, Europe Day. In addition to Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, the reception in the Belgrade City Assembly was attended by Serbian Parlament Speaker Ivica Dacic, Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic, Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic, European Integration Minister Jadranka Joksimovic, representative of the diplomatic corps and public figures.             

Europe Day was estabished in memory of the beginning of the creation of the European Union (EU) and the Day of Victory over Fascism in the Second World War. The reception is held in memory of 9 May 1950, when the Schuman Declaration was wigned, which laid the foundations of the European Union, a project that brought the longest period without war on the Old Continent. 

 

Source: Tanjug

Photo: Tanjug


8 May 2021 Selakovic congratulates Josep Borrell on Europe Day

Minister of foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia Nikola Selakovic extended a congratulatory message on the occasion of 9 May, Europe Day, to High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell, expressing confidence that the idea of uniting in diversity, in peace and solidarity, would continue to be the guiding idea of the European Union.                

"I am deeply convinced that the Republic of Serbia, through a policy of peace and good-neighborly cooperation, can contribute to the European Union becoming an even better place to live, with the sincere belief that our achieveements on the path to membership in the European family of nations will be adequately valued", reads the congatulatory message by Minister Selakovic, adding that the European perspective gave a strong impetus for our country to comprehensively implement political, economic and social feforms with the aim of becoming a full member of the European Union in the foreseeable future.                      

The Serbian Foreign Minister underlined that Serbia historically, culturally and in terms of values, belonged to the circle of countries united under the flag of the European Union and expressed hope that not only our country, but also our neighbours in the Western Balkans, would have the opportunity in the near future to become a part of what is without a doubt the most successful peace, democratic and economic project in the history of our common continent.                            

Selakovic also took the opportunity to extend gratitude on behalf of Serbia to the European Union for its assistance in the fight against the infectious Covid-19, emphasizing that our country highly appreciated the expressed solidarity and support in the difficult times of the pandemic outbreak and expressing confidence that the period ahead would see us contribute by  joint forces to identifying  solutions for overcoming the economic consequences of the corona virus pandemic.


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