Serbia is Macedonia’s sincere friend, President of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić said during a meeting with the head of the Macedonian government Zoran Zaev in Belgrade on November 21.
In a conversation with Zaev, Vučić stressed that Serbia chose the path of military neutrality, while Macedonia opted for NATO membership, so it is necessary that the countries respect each other's choice. According to Vucic, Belgrade and Skopje should have a common goal which is peace and stability in the region, the press service of the Serbian president reports. This can contribute to development of transport infrastructure in the region, improve economic cooperation and trade turnover, Vučić believes.
In turn, Prime Minister of Macedonia Zoran Zaev noted that the two states should use all the opportunities to make mutual trade turnover reach one billion euros. To this end, he proposed simplification of customs procedures making customs documents issued in one country valid in the other. Also, Zaev suggested discussing the possibility of joint work of construction companies in the markets of third countries.
Prior to the meeting with Vucic, Zaev also held talks with the Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and discussed projects for further cooperation, as the head of the Serbian government said after the meeting.
At a joint press conference following the meeting, Zaev responded to journalists' questions about resolving the diplomatic scandal that took place a few months ago between Serbia and Macedonia. He said that the parties came to an agreement, and "we withdrew our man, Serbia did the same. That is the way friends do things."
EADaily recalls that in August 2017 Belgrade urgently withdrew all the staff of its embassy in Macedonia for consultations. The Serbian president told reporters then that the government received reliable information about intensive intelligence activities conducted in Macedonia against Serbia.