Switzerland and Serbia have been long-standing partners since 1991 and with Swiss financial support totaling 400 million EUR, Switzerland is among the most important of bilateral donors. In the coming years too, Serbia will continue to be a priority country for Swiss Cooperation in Eastern Europe. The Cooperation Office is part of the Embassy of Switzerland and the Cooperation Program is jointly implemented by various Swiss federal institutions:
- The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), a division of the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), a division of the Swiss Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research
The State Secretariat for Migration (SEM), a division of the Swiss Federal Department for Justice and Police
The Swiss Cooperation Strategy for Serbia 2018 – 2021 with a total budget of approximately 95 million EUR is rooted in a spirit of partnership and mutual accountability. Building on Switzerland’s long-term presence in the country and earlier accomplishments, its overall goal is to contribute to building efficient and effective democratic institutions and processes and to encourage inclusive and sustainable growth by supporting Serbia’s reforms on the road to European integration for the benefit of all citizens.
The Strategy focuses on three domains of intervention:
Economic Development and Employment
Sustainable Energy and Resilient Cities.
Switzerland is the leading donor in the Sector Working Group Human Resources and Social Development. In 2009, Serbia and Switzerland signed a Migration Partnership to strengthen capacities to deal with the challenges of migration. Financial support for the period 2016-2019 amounts to 2 million EUR.
Switzerland’s cooperation is guided by the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation aiming to secure ownership for joint endeavors among the national partners to achieve well-coordinated and efficient cooperation with other donor agencies.
As of summer 2020, Mr. Richard Kohli is the Director of the Swiss Cooperation Office in Serbia, while his Deputy is Mr. Derek George.