EU membership negotiations chapters to be opened Dec. 14
EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn said in the Serbian national assembly on Thursday that Serbia's first EU membership negotiating chapters will be opened on Monday.Source: B92, Beta
He pointed out they will be chapters 32 and 35.
Hahn, who is in charge of EU's neighborhood policy and enlargement negotiations, told Serbian deputies the opening of the first chapters in the negotiations between Serbia and the EU would be "the beginning of the essential part of the EU accession process that is becoming an achievable goal for Serbia."
He said that Serbia achieved "great success on the road to the EU, especially in the implementation of reforms, the dialogue with Kosovo and cooperation with its neighbors in the region."
Hahn said that December 14 would be "the beginning of the process" and that it is now necessary to confirm the commitments taken and the continuation of reforms, especially in the area of justice, rule of law, fight against corruption, freedom of expression - "which is from the EU point of view inviolable".
Hahn added that "progress in normalization of relations with Kosovo is crucial for further progress of Serbia in the European integration process."
"Before end of 2019"
Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said on Thursday that the opening of chapters in Serbia's EU accession talks on December 14 would be an important date, and thanked Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn for helping along the road, adding that Serbia would like to complete its job before the end of 2019.
Vucic said that he had talked with Hahn about Serbia's pending obligations and the opening of chapters on December 14.
“We have worked a lot to achieve this, and much is yet to be done,” Vucic said at a joint news conference with Hahn, thanking the Commissioner on support for Serbia along its EU path.
It is Serbia's objective to complete the tough reforms before the end of 2019, and then it would be up to the EU to decide on our membership, Vucic said.