Serbian Defense Minister Milos Vucevic is expected to become the new prime minister. More than three months after the parliamentary election won by his Progressive Party (SNS), President Aleksandar Vucic has tasked his close party friend Vucevic with forming a government. Vucic announced this on Instagram. Vucevic is set to replace the current head of government, Ana Brnabic.

Observers expect a smooth election for Vucevic because his party has a comfortable majority in parliament. The 49-year-old lawyer has been Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister since 2022. In May 2023, he was also elected president of the Progress Party (SNS), replacing Vucic at the top of the party. However, no one in Serbia doubts that Vucic remains the informal and sole center of power in the country – although formally as head of state he has more protocol-related powers. He has been determining the country’s fortunes in changing roles since 2012.

Critics accuse Vucic of an authoritarian style of government. According to them, he abuses the government apparatus, police and secret services in order to economically ruin political competitors and publicly defame them.

In the early parliamentary election on December 17, 2023, the SNS received around 47 percent of the votes. The liberal opposition alliance “Serbia Against Violence” became the second strongest force with around 23 percent of the vote. The election was accompanied by allegations of fraud from the opposition. The OSCE also complained that the circumstances of the vote were not fair.

Serbia has been negotiating to join the EU since 2014, but the talks have been slow. At the same time, Vucic maintains good relations with Russia and China.