Forum for International Relations of the European Movement in Serbia and European Movement in Serbia on October 17, 2007. organised public debate on the topic „Creating of the Foreign Policy in Serbia: institucional and non-institucional factors“. 

Formulating foreign policy and determine its basic guidelines represents a special challenge for the political elites of countries in transition. This is primarily related to a deep and multi-divided society in which there is a basic consensus on foreign policy priorities. The aim of the debate was to give the answers to certain questions that the public often ask: What institutional and non-institutional factors influence the formulation of foreign policy of Serbia? The importance of party elites to determine the foreign policy priorities of Serbia? What is the relationship of Serbia towards some key factors of modern international relations – the European Union, NATO, the Russian Federation and the United States?

Introductory Speeches were given by:

  • Živorad Kovačević, President, European Movement in Serbia,
  • Jovan Teokarević, docent at the Faculty of Political Science
  • Dušan Lazić, Member of the Forum for International Relations
  • Pavle Janković, Director of the ISAC Fund

Moderator: Ivo Visković, President,  Forum for International Relations

Starting points for discussion were:

Process of creation of Foreign Policy of Republic of Serbia – characteristics and problems

  • How is institutional formulated the foreign policy of Republic of Serbia (the relationship of competence between President, Government and National Assembly)?
  • The influence of Political Parties and the Political Elite on formulating of the foreign policy priorites in Serbia,
  • Non-institucional factors which influence creation of the foreign policy of Serbia  — public opinion, experts, CSOs, media, business,etc.
  • The influence of the army forces and security sector on creation of the formulation on foreign policy priorities in Republic of Serbia
  • Divided Serbian Society (basic dividing lines – authoritarian-democratic, pro-traditional, ethno-national-civic, etc.) and influence on creation of foreign policy,
  • Multietnic character of Serbia and determining foreign policy goals.

What are the priority goals of Serbian foreign policy and whether there is a consensus on that

  • Serbia Acession to EU: Between optimism and eurosceptism,
  • Kosovo and Serbian foreign policy,
  • NATO membership – yes or no?
  • Serbia and United States of America: Are we going towards a new exacerbation of relations?
  • Relations between Russia and Serbia,
  • resolution of inter-state relations between countries of the Western Balkans and Serbia’s attitude towards multilateral cooperation initiatives in the region (the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe / Regional Cooperation Council, Cooperation Process in Southeastern Europe and the Central European Initiative),
  • foreign policy dimension of the economic interests of Serbia and
  • Energy Security and Serbian foreign policy.