Since Merkel herself has already said that ‘Serbia has to cooperate with Kosovo reasonably’ not requesting recognition at the moment, Merkel’s visit is expected to end in a very positive tone with new possibilities for German investments.
The fact that the Chancellor Merkel is coming to Serbia and Croatia at the moment of serious problems with debt crisis gives special gravity to her visit. Well informed ‘Blic’ sources from Berlin claim that the most important message that Merkel wants to convey is that Germany is not against further EU enlargement.
The main topics on agenda of her meetings with Serbia President Boris Tadic and Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic shall be getting of the candidate status, normalization of relations with Kosovo and new German investments in Serbia especially in the energy sector.
‘Peace and stability are of key importance for Germany when this region is concerned since German contingent is the largest in the KFOR. Good neighboring relations are important for the same reason and Merkel is expected to launch this topic both in Zagreb and Belgrade. I also expect that she supports everything that Tadic is doing together with Josipovic and also with Bosnia/Herzegovina leaders. I am also expecting that she shall warn Croatian Prime Minister Jadranka Kosor because of her statements over sentenced Croatian generals’, Ognjen Pribicevic, former Serbia ambassador in Berlin says.
Professor Predrag Simic, former diplomat and expert in international politics says for ‘Blic’ that Merkel is coming to Serbia and Croatia because ‘they are key countries of the region’. According to his words Merkel shall praise Zagreb and request finalization in tackling corruption.
‘In Belgrade, however, there shall be some bitter pills to swallow. Merkel shall support Serbia in getting the candidate status but it is not very likely that she shall give any hope regarding getting of the date for beginning of negotiations with the EU. Her most difficult request shall be the one concerning Kosovo.
She shall request that Serbian institutions leave the north so that it is integrated with the rest of Kosovo as per Ahtisaari’s or Ahtisaari Plus plan. She shall not request recognition of Kosovo since that shall be left for some later phase’, Simic says for ‘Blic’.