How the EU is working with Serbia to cope with migration: facts and figures on EU support


Since September 2015, the EU has allocated EUR 40 million to support Serbia in managing flows of refugees and migrants. This non-refundable assistance is mostly provided via our partners, including the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Policy, the Serbian Commissariat for Refugees and Migrants, the Serbian Red Cross, and partners such as UNHCR, IOM, UNICEF, as well as international and local NGos.

The Head of the EU Delegation, Ambassador Michael Davenport, stated: “Serbia has been recognised as making an important contribution to tackling the migration crisis in a responsible and humane way. The EU is supporting the Serbian authorities at all levels to mitigate the impact on local communities. The EU Delegation and Serbian authorities are working together to identify priority needs and put EUR 40 million to good use. In coming months and years Serbia will benefit from additional substantial funding in the areas of migration and border management.”

Areas of EU support and amounts:

Accommodation: more than EUR 10.7 million for of the construction or rehabilitation works in Preševo, Šid, Adaševci, Subotica, Principovac, Krnjača, Bosilegrad, Pirot and Dimitrovgrad and Bujanovac, planned works in Šid, Padinska Skela, other existing and new reception/asylum centres; equipment, mobile response points, supplies and furniture. The EU is also paying for electricity, heating, water, waste and sanitation, garbage disposal and cleaning: more than EUR 460,000 this year and almost EUR 2 million next year.

Protection: more than EUR 9.4 million for the salaries of 273 Serbian staff − coordinators, translators, administrative support staff and maintenance personnel − in Subotica, Šid, Preševo, Negotin, Dimitrovgrad, Zaječar, Krnačja, Banja Koviljaca, Tutin, Sjenica and in Belgrade. We also funded meals and accommodation of staff from competent authorities when in the field; children friendly spaces, provision of information, individual case management and family reunions, support to accompanied and unaccompanied minors.

Border protection: EUR 7.5 million for equipment, information technology infrastructure, better border management, the deployment of guest officers from EU Member States in support of the Serbian border police, modernisation of border crossings. (Note: In addition, since 2001, the EU has supported the border police and border security in Serbia with about EUR 80 million, chiefly for the modernisation of border crossings.)

Food and Non Food Items: EUR 3.8 million: food, water, hygiene kits, summer and winter clothes.

Transport and logistics: more than EUR 2.6 million for passenger and off road vehicles, passenger vans, buses, utility vehicles, cargo and delivery vans; fuel and maintenance of vehicles of the Serbian authorities; and also uniforms for police officers in the asylum/reception centres.

Health care: almost EUR 1.2 million for two mobile clinics, related medical and translation staff, drugs and medical supplies, access to primary health care in reception centres, in border areas and in Belgrade city park.

Management, administrative, computers, travel, communication: almost EUR 2 million.

Support to the reform of national asylum system: EUR 1 million. 

Assisted voluntary returns of migrants to countries of origin: EUR 0.75 million.

In addition, several EU Member States have provided much needed bilateral assistance to Serbia, responding to the request of the Serbian authorities under the Union’s Civil Protection Mechanism. Serbia has also benefited from substantial EU assistance under a regional programme dedicated to migration management with a budget of EUR 8 million.


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