Serbia’s first female prime minister Ana Brnabic on Wednesday presented her cabinet to parliament and pledged to take steps to get the country closer to European Union membership.
The prime minister-designate is expected to get the approval of more than 150 deputies of the ruling coalition in the 250-seat parliament.
In her one-hour speech, Brnabic also presented her programme in which she pledged to reform education and push for digitalisation of the state administration to help Serbia join the EU.
Brnabic was picked by President Aleksandar Vucic, who stepped down as prime minister to take the more ceremonial role after he won the April election in a landslide.
"EU membership remains our main direction," Brnabic said.
She said her government would work on strengthening relations with Moscow, continuing a delicate balancing act between the West and Russia.
Brnabic, who had been minister in charge of state administration in Vucic's cabinet, named Nenad Popovic, a well known businessman with strong links to Russia, as one of her deputies. Dusan Vujovic will remain finance minister.
She added that her government would focus on achieving average economic growth of 3.5 percent a year and would tackle environmental issues, including power production from renewables and waste control – both key elements in the Balkan state's plans to join the EU.
"I count on the support of the president, Vucic," Brnabic, who is not affiliated with any party, said.
She also made history by being the country's first openly gay head of government.