Neighbourhood and Enlargement Commissioner Olivér Várhelyi (pictured), together with Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, have participated in the virtual signing ceremony of a €70.2 million assistance programme by Serbian Minister of European integration Jadranka Joksimović and EU Head of Delegation to Serbia Sem Fabrizi.
This programme is the first envelope of the EU’s Instrument for Pre-Accession (IPA) 2020. It will support alignment to the EU acquis, socio-economic development and employment, and social policies for the most vulnerable people. In particular, €30m will be devoted to the economic recovery with grant support provided to micro enterprises, start-ups and business support organisations in the less developed regions of Serbia; therefore increasing employment, innovation and economic development at local level.
In the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis, special focus will also be put on strengthening the capacities for surveillance and response to communicable diseases. The signing ceremony was followed by a press point by the Commissioner and the President (available on EbS).