Selaković: Better regional cooperation is a good response to growing challenges

04. Oct 2021.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikola Selaković, at the panel "Power Shifts in Southern Europe", within the 21st Belgrade Economic Forum, said that he was convinced that the future is in regional integration and multilateral cooperation.

He believes that the "Open Balkans" initiative, initiated by the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, can lead to a positive change in the situation in the region.

The projection, he says, is that this initiative, i.e., the realization of the free movement of people, goods, capital and services, can lead to the growth of gross domestic product in the entire region.

"This is not an alternative to our European integration, but only an indicator of our good will that we do not want to waste time until the EU experiences internal consolidation and shows much greater political readiness to deal with enlargement and accept us who remain as a kind of an island", says Minister Selaković.

"The regional cooperation that we achieve at our regional level, accompanied by the Berlin Process, is one of the answers (to the challenges), and the EU and European integration are proof of that. We cannot do much alone, but together, jointly, we can do a lot more", says the head of Serbian diplomacy.

For him, the change in the balance of power in southern Europe has one important aspect, and that is the demographic aspect.

"Those that are the most present, have the strongest perspective in the future. On the other hand, the change in the balance of power is related to economic changes and economic progress. Economies are changing rapidly and those prejudices that we had about each other in the past, are proving to be wrong today, because the world is changing faster and faster", Selaković said.

For him, southern Europe is not only the area of ​​the Balkans, but also the Mediterranean basin, and he states that everyone has had enough of listening about economic recession, and that no one talks about the demographic recession, although demography is "what both creates the economy and writes history", said Minister Selaković.

"I do not want to deal with history, I want to deal with what we can have an impact on, and we can have an impact on the future, we cannot have an impact on the past", Minister Selaković emphasized.