November 30, 2018

2nd Intergovernmental Summit between the Republic of Cyprus and the Republic of Serbia

Cyprus - Serbia, Joint Communiqué

1. The 2nd Intergovernmental Summit between the Republic of Cyprus and the Republic of Serbia took place in Nicosia, on 30 November 2018, and was held in an atmosphere of friendship and mutual understanding that traditionally characterize the Cyprus-Serbian relationship. 

 

2. During the Summit the entire spectrum of bilateral relations was reviewed. The two sides noted the excellent level of bilateral relations that are based on deeply rooted historical as well as cultural bonds. At the same time, they reaffirmed the importance of further enhancing the long-standing close cooperation between the two countries.

3. In the framework of the Summit, five Memoranda of Understanding were concluded, on Cooperation and Bilateral Political Consultations, in the field of European Integration, on Diaspora Affairs, in the field of Education and on Sport Cooperation.   

 4. Both sides recognized the benefits of holding regular high-level bilateral consultations and cooperating more closely at different levels of their bilateral relations, as well as on international issues of common concern. That includes closer cooperation at the multilateral level in all international fora, including the UN, and particularly on issues of national importance to the two sides. It was, therefore, agreed to maintain the momentum of exchanging high-level political visits in the future. In this context, a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation and Bilateral Political Consultations was signed. 

5. Moreover, both countries reaffirmed the friendly relations, mutual understanding and close cooperation between the Cypriot and Serbian Diaspora communities around the world. The Cypriot side noted the existence of a very vibrant Serbian community in Cyprus, which constitutes a substantive component of the Cypriot society.

   

6. While taking into consideration the great potential for strengthening the bilateral relations, the two sides examined also ways of expanding and deepening the mutually beneficial cooperation in other areas of common interest. In this regard, and as a follow-up to the Summit, the two sides decided to hold a business forum in Cyprus in the near future with the aim of creating new opportunities for economic cooperation. The forum will be held with the active support of the Cyprus-Serbian Business Association, as well as the Chambers of Commerce of the two countries.

7. In addition, the two sides examined the possibility of enhancing their cooperation within the framework of a trilateral partnership, along with Greece, encompassing a number of areas of common interest, with a view to contributing to the promotion of peace, stability and security in the Balkan Peninsula and the Eastern Mediterranean region.

8. In order to further strengthen mutual understanding, the two sides have also decided to extend their cooperation by further developing links with the media, think-tanks, NGOs and civil society, in an effort to foster and promote people-to-people contacts.

 

9. The Republic of Cyprus reconfirmed its unwavering respect to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Serbia in line with UN SC Resolution 1244 (1999), that provides for UNMIK presence in Kosovo and Metohija, while supporting the efforts made by the Government of Serbia in arriving at a mutually acceptable and sustainable solution for Kosovo and Metohija within the EU facilitated dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina.

 

10. The Republic of Cyprus confirmed its firm support on Serbia’s European perspective in accordance of the relevant EU Council Conclusions of June 2018. The Cypriot side commended Serbia on the great progress it has achieved and, within the framework of the Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation in the field of European Integration, extended an offer to share its expertise in Serbia’s process of European integration and the accession negotiations process, leading up to a future membership of the EU.  

 

11. The Republic of Serbia reaffirmed its full respect to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Cyprus and reiterated its unwavering support to the efforts of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus to reach a comprehensive, just and viable solution to the Cyprus problem based on the relevant UNSC Resolutions, International and EU Law. To this end, the termination of the anachronistic security arrangements and the departure of foreign forces remain a sine qua non for the Republic of Cyprus to be able to function as a normal sovereign State, member of the UN and the EU, free of foreign dependencies. In this context, the Serbian side stressed that it supports theresumption of negotiations from where they had left off in Crans-Montana on the basis of the UN Secretary General’s framework. The Republic of Cyprus expressed its great gratitude for the Republic of Serbia’s participation in the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus. 

12. Both sides stressed that the discovery and exploitation of significant hydrocarbon fields in the Eastern Mediterranean is of vital importance for the stability of the region and for Europe’s energy security. In this respect, the Republic of Serbia expressed her support to the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus to explore and exploit its natural resources in accordance with International Law, as reflected in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

13. The 3nd Intergovernmental Summit between Cyprus and Serbia will be held in Serbia in 2019.