At the sitting held on 19 November 2021, the members of the Committee on the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region were presented the work of the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region in 2021 and plans for 2022 by acting head of the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region Arnaud Gouillon.
Gouillon said that important work has been completed this year - digitalisation of the Directorate’s public call for grants to civil society organisations, which has significantly improved operation, saving both time and money. Gouillon pointed out that 64% of the Directorate’s budget goes to subsidise civil society organisations for projects and events, which confirms the importance of digitalisation of the public call.
The acting head of the Directorate informed the Committee members in more detail about the projects, activities, events and campaigns conducted in 2021, saying the Directorate had approved 202 projects to civil society organisations, which is twice less than the previous year, with the intention of reducing the number, but increasing the quality and amount of money allocated for projects.
Gouillon stressed that new schools of the Serbian language in the diaspora have been opened this year, while some of the existing ones have opened new classes, increasing the number of Serbian children in the diaspora who learn Serbian by 20%.
Committee Chairman Milimir Vujadinovic commended the work of the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region this year, stressing that the Directorate has actively cooperated with competent institutions and civil society organisations that implement projects in the Diaspora and the region. He said that the Committee has tried to contribute to the work of the Directorate, within its competencies.
The Committee members also discussed the Republic of Serbia 2022 Budget Bill, Section 17, Chapter 17.2 - in the part relating to the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region, submitted by the Government.
The proposed budget for the Directorate was presented by the acting assistant head of the Directorate Nikolina Milatovic Popovic, who said that 164 million 275 thousand RSD are planned to be allocated through two programme activities: to protect the rights and interests of members of the diaspora and Serbs in the region and to preserve the national and cultural identity of the diaspora and Serbs in the region.
The Committee members decided to propose to the competent Committee on Finance, State Budget and Control of Public Spending to accept the Republic of Serbia 2022 Budget Bill, Section 17, Chapter 17.2 - in the part relating to the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region.
The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairman Milimir Vujadinovic and attended by the following Committee members and deputy members: Sanja Lakic, Slobodan Alavanja, Miodrag Linta, Milan Ilic, Goran Milic, Aleksandar Cotric, Milos Terzic, Radovan Tvrdisic, Mladen Boskovic, Justina Pupin Koscal, Haji Milorad Stosic and Prof. Dr Ljubisa Stojmirovic.