Strengthening Rule of Law in Serbia

Project description

Title: Strengthening Rule of Law
Commissioned by: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Co-funded by: European Union (EU)
Country: Serbia
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Justice
Overall term: 2020 to 2025


Membership in the European Union (EU) is a declared goal of the Serbian Government. To move membership forward, Serbia has been incorporating the body of common rights and obligations known as the EU acquis. Serbia's perspective of achieving EU accession is closely linked to Chapter 23 “Justice and Fundamental Rights”. Without progress in the implementation of Chapter 23 (and strengthening rule of law), there can be no substantial progress in the EU accession process.

In recent years, the Serbian Government has been progressing slowly in implementing this chapter. Due to an apparently high number of administrative complaints and insufficiently trained staff, a backlog in case processing has arisen. At the same time the absence of regular publications means a lack of transparency in Serbia’s case law. The legal system faces limitations in both its application and enforcement in areas like procedural law or fundamental rights. There is still no proven track record in corruption cases. The project addresses these challenges as part of the Good Governance Programme.


Progress has been achieved in the Serbian Government’s Action Plan to implement Chapter 23 “Justice and Fundamental Rights” of the EU accession negotiations.


While the project’s main partner is the Ministry of Justice, its approach extends to all citizens in Serbia, supporting them in asserting their rights more effectively. This is especially relevant for vulnerable sections of the population, for whom equitable and accessible institutional protection is of vital importance.

The project focuses its support on three areas:
(1) the judiciary
(2) the fight against corruption and
(3) the protection of fundamental rights.

This focus on justice and fundamental rights supports Serbia on its road to EU membership. And from the global perspective, it contributes to SDG16 of Agenda 2030 for Peace, Justice, Strong Institutions and 5 for Gender Equality.

Last update: August 2022