Town and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness CampaignTown and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in “Europe, It Is You” Awareness Campaign
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Towns and Municipalities from South and South West Serbia in the “Europe, That Is You” Campaign

22 March 2013, Topola

Representatives of the Delegation of the European Union to Serbia, the Office of the Serbian Government and the European Partnership with Municipalities Programme - EU PROGRES informed mayors and presidents of municipalities in South and South West Serbia that the level of donations to be granted in the coming period depended on their capabilities, and that it was necessary therefore to upgrade the capacities of the administrations to offer the best response to EU integration challenges.

Mayors and presidents of municipalities from 25 towns and municipalities in South and South West Serbia, from the districts of Pčinja, Jablanica, Toplica, Zlatibor and Raška, gathered during a working lunch, on the occasion of launching the “Europe, That is You“ campaign, and showed their willingness to support the action aimed at bringing Europe closer to the local communities they represent.

Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Adriano Martins reiterated that the EU was determined to lend strong support to Serbia on its path of European integration and that the forthcoming period would be marked by intensified cooperation on initiatives coming from undeveloped or underdeveloped regions.

“The EU funds are available for all projects based on the development of your communities, inter-municipal cooperation and strengthening of cross-border initiatives. We will perform this task together, and all EU institutions that have their representatives in Serbia will be at your disposal. However, you are the owners of these projects and initiatives,“ said Martins.

EU PROGRES Programme Manager Graeme Tyndall made a reference to the results achieved so far by his team, together with local authorities, in implementing dozens of projects and pointed out that South and South West Serbia had enough capacity to meet challenges that would be posed by the next phase of the EU integration process.

“If we managed to help you initiate some significant projects in your local communities over the past three years, our mission has been fulfilled. However, the essential point is depolitization of development. It does not really matter which President initiated a project, the important thing is that the project works for the benefit of all residents in a community and that its completion has been successful,“ said Tyndall.

Director of the Serbian European Integration Office Milan Pajević talked about the importance of cooperation between local self-governments and the Republic of Serbia’s institutions. He explained the role of this institution in the system for distributing the donors' funds, and expressed readiness together with his team to help local authorities in accessing European funds in the best possible manner.

“It is important that we understand each other well and that we know what our objectives are. I believe this campaign will help us achieve that. The European Union support is already visible in local communities and we will make every effort to maintain this situation in the coming period,“ said Pajević.

The working lunch proceeded with addresses by representatives of towns and municipalities, who extensively commented on the hitherto cooperation with the EU, the Serbian European Integration Office and the EU PROGRES Programme. The general conclusion was that projects funded by the European Union, the Government of Switzerland and the Serbian Government, through the Partnership with Municipalities Programme - EU PROGRES, have brought results that have instilled new energy in citizens of the local communities, improved their living conditions and empowered local authorities to work on the development of these towns and municipalities with even more enthusiasm and resolve.

“You have helped us to obtain resources for improving the quality of lives of our residents and in that manner you have made our job easier,“ said Jovan Čorbić, President of Raška Municipality.

“There are no good mayors among us. Our job is to set up a good team, the team that knows how to prepare development projects. And then, we can say that we are successful in what we are doing,“ added Šemsudin Kučević, President of Tutin Municipality.

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Please be informed that the European Partnership with Municipalities Programme – EU PROGRES was completed on 31 March 2014. If you would like to learn about the activities and results of the European PROGRES, which is a continuation of development support of the European Union and Government of Switzerland to the South East and South West Serbia, please visit www.europeanprogres.org