The director of the European Affairs Fund of Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, Aleksandar Simurdic welcomed delegation of French Institute in Serbia, which was led by the Director of French Institute, Stanislas Piere.
Director Piere emphasized the importance of cross-border cooperation, that the Republic of Serbia realizes through various programs and projects with Hungary, Croatia and Romania as EU members, which is an important aspect in the progress of European integration of our country. The meeting also emphasized the long-term potential of Novi Sad as the European Capital of Culture for 2022, in the implementation of numerous projects and events in the field of culture that will leave a significant mark in this area in the coming months and years. Two important projects were presented, which will be implemented by the French Institute and the Embassy of France in Serbia in cooperation with the Fund in the coming period. The first project “Studying in France -a job in Serbia” aims to motivate students of the Faculty of Agriculture in Novi Sad to study in France through master programs, which would be scholarships by the French government, providing them with certain jobs in relevant companies in Serbia after their return. The second project, that is called “Eco-Municipality”, aims to encourage sustainable urban development of municipalities in Serbia through various categories: waste and water management, connecting cities and municipalities and energy efficiency. By participating in this project, cities and municipalities from Serbia will have the opportunity to present their projects within the above categories and realize the opportunity to improve their environment through various types of support from the French Government.
During the meeting, the Director of the Fund presented the current activities of the Fund with a special focus on supporting local governments, which aim to make a planned contribution to better use of local capacities to absorb funds through external sources of funding. Systemic approach to the local, includes the most important project of the Fund in the previous period – mapping the state and potential of cities and municipalities in Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, planned strengthening of administrative and institutional capacities for more efficient administration in the service of citizens, as well as preparation and implementation of projects financed from external sources, as well as its integral program work. Great progress in the development of the IT sector and the academic community has also been recognized, with a focus on Novi Sad as the university and science and technology center of the region.
The above-mentioned topics were recognized as points of mutual future cooperation, which will provide the Fund with significant support in the implementation of planned goals, and when it comes to promoting local and regional development of AP Vojvodina.