Maybe it’s a stick and carrot game, but Serbia did receive a significant carrot Wednesday, Feb. 15, with grants from the European Union (EU) in the form of an energy package valued at EUR 165 mln, which will primarily be geared toward households and small-medium businesses.
“[…] I witnessed today [Serbia Minister of European Integration] Tanja Miscevic signing EUR 165 mln in budget support to fight the energy crisis in [energy],” said Emmanuel Giafret, head of the EU Delegation in a “tweet.”
“With this aid, announced by President [of the EU Commission Ursula] von der Leyen in October, vulnerable households & SMEs in Serbia will pay less for energy,” he added.
The aid announcement came as positive news, considering constant back and forth with both Kosovo and the EU over Kosovo recognition and Serbia’s thus far unwillingness to sanction Russia.
The ceremony took place at the Serbia’s Elektromreza Srbije National Dispatch Center with the agreement signed by Miscevic and and Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Plamena Halaceva.
Giaufret meanwhile noted that the agreement demonstrated EU support of Serbia and its citizens, according to BalkanEnergyNews.com.
This agreement is part of a larger package, valued at EUR 500 mln, stated the news site, which also noted that Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic highlighted a wider aid plan for the Western Balkans valued at EUR 1 bln.
Photo of EU Commission Ursula von der Leyen by Ursula_von_der_leyen.jpg: Michael von Aichbergerderivative work: 9002redrum, CC BY 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.