National Convention on the European Union (NCEU)
Platform for participation and monitoring the negotiation process with the EU
National Convention on the EU is a permanent body for thematically structured debate on Serbian accession into the European Union, between representatives of the governmental bodies, political parties, NGOs, experts, syndicates, private sector and representatives of professional organizations.
The model was taken from Slovakia, where it has been successfully implemented since 2001. Adapted to the European integration process environment in Serbia, the NCEU has monitored the process of negotiation about Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA), as well as all other issues related to the Serbian accession to the EU.
With the onset of Serbia’s EU accession negotiations there is a possibility for the NCEU to be established as a platform particularly adjusted to the new phase in the relations between Serbia and the European Union. The platform should provide:
Regular consultations between Serbian governmental institutions and bodies and the interested public (civil society, local self governments and the representatives of the economy in the different phases of the accession process
Definitions of recommendations and opinions about Serbian negotiation positions as well as monitoring if Serbia successfully manages to meet the conditions and benchmarks in various sectors as described in negotiation chapters
Transparent and open dialogue during the analytical overview (screening), drafting negotiations position, the very process of negotiations as well as during the monitoring process of reform enforcement and obligations set by the negotiations
Higher quality of informing the public about the accession process, negotiations and the consequences (obligations for different stakeholders, the economy, citizens…)
NCEU was established primarily as body with the aim to facilitate cooperation between the National Assembly and the Civil society during the process of the EU accession negotiations. The cooperation is established in accordance to the good strategic cooperation between the highest Serbian legislative body and chosen representatives of civil society, which was enforced by the Resolutions of National Assembly from 2004 and 2013.
In accordance with the obligation of consulting civil society when drafting strategic and legal documents required by the Serbian government, NCEU will be a suitable platform for the cooperation and consultations with the government and its bodies in charge of the EU accession negotiations (the negotiating team, negotiating working groups). The principle of cooperation between governmental bodies and the civil society is based on the Declaration by the Committee of Ministers on the Code of Good Practice for Citizen Participation in the Decision-Making Process. In accordance with this declaration, Serbian government establishes its cooperation with the civil society upon the following principles: active participation of the civil society in all phases of adoption of legal provisions, mutual trust, openness and responsibility, efficiency and effectiveness, cost-effectivenes and timely informing.