Belgrade, May 23rd, 2019.

The Agriculture and Rural Development Sector Working Group meeting was held on 23rd May 2019, in the Palace of Serbia premises, with the aim to enable discussion on the identified priorities and measures for the agriculture and rural development sector. Applying the partnership principle the Ministry for European Integration and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management organised the Sector Working Group meeting in order to present and instigate discussion with the donor community on the content and main features of the ARD Situation analysis and priorities and measures identified within the comprehensive process of development the new multi-annual planning document for the 2019-2025 period.

The preparation of the Document is initiated by the Ministry for European Integration (MEI), together with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management and other sector relevant institutions. The document aims to contribute to more effective planning of public policies within Agriculture and Rural Development sector, that underpin the economic development and help Serbia to comply with the economic and political criteria for EU accession. It is a national policy-driven document guiding the allocation of external funding towards the implementation of national strategic reforms. The major focus in development of the document was to draft the sector Situation Analysis containing a comprehensive sector overview and assess the current situation in the sector, to provide evidence-based rationale for the choices made in setting the course for international development assistance to support national reforms.

During the meeting the MEI explained the purpose, scope and the process of development of the new multi-annual planning document up to 2025, including the presentation of the state of play related to the international assistance coordination mechanism and proposal for improvements and future functioning of the SWG mechanism. The leading sector institution concentrated on presentation of the current state of play in the sector, main challenges and needs and elaborated on the identified ARD sector priorities and measures which shall mainstream the international assistance investments in the sector up to 2025.

The following donor representatives attended the SWG meeting: Embassy of Japan, EU Delegation in Serbia, World Bank, Embassy of Spain, GIZ, USA Embassy, UN FAO, UN, German Embassy, Embassy of the Netherlands, Embassy of Sweden, Embassy of the Republic of Korea, UN Women.