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Serbia may overestimate gains from Macron visit

Monday, July 29, 2019

Subject

Franco-Serbian relations.

Significance

During a two-day state visit on July 15-16, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic was effusive in his welcome for French President Emmanuel Macron. Macron reciprocated with warm gestures, happy to lap up the attention showered on him and scoop up deals for French business.

Impacts

  • Greater French and European involvement in the medium term could benefit efforts to jump-start Belgrade-Prishtina negotiations.
  • French participation in big infrastructure projects could give French government and business a bigger stake in Serbia.
  • Macron is likely to be persuaded not to close the enlargement door completely in the medium term.
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