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"Between East and West Serbia plays center"

04. April 2011. | 09:43

Source: Pioneer-Investors.com

Russia equally needs Serbia to project its power and energy interests to S.E. Europe. The visit of the still very powerful V.Putin is definitively a success for the Serbian Strategy and its central position between East and West .

In a joint news conference with Putin at the Palace of Serbia, Tadic highlighted the importance of the relations of two countries. The Serbian President added that the two countries have raised the level of cooperation to a very high level and share the highest degree of consensus on international issues.

President Tadic stressed that the strategic orientation of Serbia is to be a member of the EU, adding that Serbia also has a strategic interest to cooperate with Russia, including the energy sector. I see no possibility for the EU to solve its energy needs without the partnership with Russia, Tadic said and voiced assurance that Serbia will also be part of that arrangement.

The support on the sensitive Kosovo case, the granting of a $200 million loan, the construction of South Stream gas pipeline, investments of Gazprom in Naftna Industrija Srbije (NIS) and in the Pancevo refinery are important areas of common interest and cooperation. In counterpart the Russian PM said he expects Serbian construction companies to take part in the preparation of the Olympic Winter Games to be held in Sochi in 2014 and the Football World Cup in 2018.

Putin said that Russia is not concerned about Serbia's European integration and reminded the specific interest shown by Serbian officials on the construction of the Serbian part of South Stream gas pipeline a great opportunity for Serbia.He recalled that the Russian company Gaspromneft, since it privatised NIS, invested $250 million in this company, and plans to invest another $500 million this year. In addition he mentioned that EUR 800 million of the loan that Russia approved to Serbia will be used to finalize specific projects, especially the modernization of railways.

Belgrade strategy seems twofold. On the one hand he strengthens his valuable relations with Russia that assures a privileged position on the energy networks of S. E.

Europe and a powerful political ally. On the other side it carefully assures its European future through its compliance with European standards. Dialogue with Kosovo is being held in a very reasonable framework and its relations with Russia is another powerful asset in its negotiation with western countries.

With B.Dzelic convincing the Europeans and Defence Minister Sutanovac reassuring the Americans as to ultimate Serbian objectives the Prime Minister and President Tadic can confidently negotiate with V. Putin the centuries-long friendship between the Russian and Serbian people.

Russia equally needs Serbia to project its power and energy interests to S.E. Europe. The visit of the still very powerful V.Putin is definitively a success for the Serbian Strategy and its central position between East and West .


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04. April - 10. April 2011.