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Parliamentary questions
PDF 41kWORD 18k
2 October 2019
Question for written answer E-003068-19
to the Commission
Rule 138
Mara Bizzotto (ID) , Anna Bonfrisco (ID)

 Subject:  Safe City project in Serbia — China penetrating into Europe

The Safe City project is being rolled out in Serbia in the cities of Belgrade, Novi Sad and Smederevo by Chinese high-tech industries (Huawei and HIKVision) required under the Chinese National Security Act to relay all data in their possession to Beijing’s intelligence service.

The details of the project (as in other cases where Belgrade has in practice outsourced its own security and law enforcement system to Chinese police technology and services) are labelled ‘confidential’ and cannot be disclosed by Serbia’s Minister for Internal Affairs.

The project is based on facial recognition technology and has been strongly criticised owing to the threat it poses to fundamental rights, with potential repercussions in the field of civil rights and political freedoms.

Considering that Serbia is a candidate for accession to the EU (from which it is receiving billions in pre-accession funding) and that chapters 23 and 24 (fundamental and security — security) are viewed as key to the negotiations, and given that the EU intends to develop even more restrictive legislation on facial recognition technology so as to bring this into line with the GDPR, can the Commission state:
1. Whether it knows the details of the Safe City project?
2. Whether it will raise this issue urgently with the Serbian Government and ascertain whether EU funding is being used for the project?
3. Whether this project is not a case of dangerous Chinese interference in Europe’s politics, economy, freedom and security, and incompatible with Serbian accession to the EU?
Original language of question: IT 
Last updated: 18 October 2019Legal notice