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Press Office

Athens, 2 February 2023

Two-day official visit by Serbian parliamentary delegation to Athens

The two-day official visit by the Serbian delegation to Athens has concluded. MPs Beroljub Arsic, Tijana Davidovac and Ana Beloica, accompanied by their country’s Ambassador to Athens, Dusan Spasojevic, met with the Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias and members of the National Defence and Foreign Affairs and the Production and Trade Committees.

During their meeting with the Tourism Minister, it was recognised that it’s important to accelerate the procedures to settle operational issues of the Hellenic Tourism Organisation in Belgrade, with a similar arrangement regarding the Serbian Tourism Office in Athens. Furthermore, the Serbian side emphasised the issue of the financial burdening on Serbian visitors to Greece due to the lack of access to roaming services, which, according to estimates by the Serbian side, amounts to an annual loss of 300.000 to 400.00 tourists from Serbia to Greece. 

The importance of systematic promotion of winter tourism in both countries was also emphasised. The Serbian side expressed its intention to add, as of next April, regular flights to 4 new Greek destinations. In light of this, the Chairman of the Greece-Serbia Parliamentary Friendship Group Christos Boukoros proposed to consider including an additional destination in mainland Greece, indicating the city of Volos. 

In the meeting with members of the Standing Committee on National Defence and Foreign Affairs, chaired by its Secretary Anastasios Chatzivasileiou, the latter confirmed the long-standing Greek support for the integration of the Western Balkans into the EU and referred to the acceleration of the procedures in this direction, following the Memorandum of Cooperation of 2010. The need for Serbia to align itself with the sanctions against Russia was also raised. 

The discussion that followed between the members of the Committee Anastasios Chatzivasileiou, Georgios Tsipras, Georgios Fragidis and the three-member Serbian delegation focused mainly on the following: 

a. Serbia’s clear support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity,

b. the pending issue regarding Kosovo and the importance attached to the normalisation of relations between Belgrade and Pristina,

c. to promote the convening of the 4th High-Level Cooperation Council which is expected to enhance interconnectivity between the two countries via the creation of new rail routes and air links, to facilitate commercial/investment initiatives and to prove beneficial to cooperation in the fields of justice, culture and education.

At the meeting with the members of the Standing Committee on Production and Trade Vasileios Giogakas (Deputy Chair), Charalambos Mamoulakis and Georgios Moulkiotis (members), highlighted were, among other things, the possibilities to strengthen economic bilateral relations in energy, the environment, infrastructures, transport, as well the Committee’s assistance, on a parliamentary basis, to the relevant ministries. 

In addition, the will was highlighted to reactivate the Cooperation Committee of the Hellenic Parliament and the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, which resulted from the Memorandum of Cooperation, signed by the Presidents of the two legislative bodies in 2017. 

At the same time, the Greek parliamentarians explained that the alleviation of the difficulties of our people is better served through the strengthening of strategic partnerships in conjunction with targeted actions. In this context, the Serbian parliamentarians emphasised the importance of the Permanent Partnership as a pillar for economic growth and urged the Greek side to indicate, when meeting with economic actors, Serbia’s attractive economic environment for investments. 

The country’s Ambassador to Athens Dusan Spasojevic, pointed out, as of great importance to both sides, the Agreement on infrastructures between the President of Serbia and the Greek Prime Minister and noted that at the upcoming International Tourism Fair in Belgrade, two Greek regions will be highlighted as particularly preferred destinations for Serbian visitors. 




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