EU Scheme for young professionals in Western Balkans, Belgrade event

BELGRADE – On Thursday 16 March 2017 at the EU Info Centre in Belgrade a farewell cocktail will be organized as the project EU Scheme for young professionals in the Western Balkans is coming to the end.

The farewell cocktail will be an opportunity to hear from participants about their experience on the project. The participants will be greeted by Oskar Benedikt, deputy Head of EU Delegation to Serbia and Ksenija Milenkovic, director of the Serbian European Integration Office.

The pilot programme “EU Scheme for young professionals in the Western Balkans“ was established as a follow-up to the Summit on the Western Balkans (WB) held in Paris in June 2016, which reconfirmed the European perspective of the WB countries. Public administration reform and good governance were once again put at the top of the Union’s accession agenda and the project therefore focused on these specific subjects.

After a thorough application and screening process by the European Commission and the national authorities, 30 young public servants were chosen to participate in the project. After attending an initial capacity-building training course at the School of Public Affairs at Sciences Po in Paris in October last year, they were divided into six groups focusing on different topics.

Martin Noveski, Muhamed Latifi, Helios Reveli, Dijana Dedić and Danilo Smolović were assigned to the Serbia group, focussing on the topic of ‘Budgetary procedures towards efficiency’. Their programme included a series of meetings with the Ministry of Finance and other relevant institutions as well as time for group work. They were located in the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia as well as the Serbian European Integration Office, which created the two-week programme.

During the same time, five representatives of the Serbian institutions also conducted their assignments in the other countries of the Western Balkans.

The next steps for the project participants, who come from ministries of finance, European integration, or prime ministers’ offices, will be to write a group paper which they will present at a conference in May.

The project is funded by the European Commission and implemented by the British Council.