The Serbian Finance Ministry said on Friday that the European Union Economic and Financial Affairs Council said that Serbia is achieving excellent economic results.
The Council session was attended by Finance Minister Sinisa Mali. The meeting was part of a dialogue on economic management between the EU, Western Balkan countries and Turkey to step up the coordination of their economic policies.
A ministry statement said that the meeting concluded that the EU supports Serbia‘s efforts to strengthen its institutional frameworks and speed up structural reforms.
Mali is quoted as saying that Serbia has successfully consolidated its public finances and established a firm foundation for growth. The minister said that Serbia has become the most attractive investment destination in the region with 3.5 billion in foreign direct investments last year. Mali said that reforms are being planned to improve the business environment along with structural reforms, including the reform of the Tax Authority.
“We want our economy to tax income, that is profit, not labour and that is also one of the biggest demands by foreign investors,” Mali said. The minister said the focus this year is on investments into innovations with some 100 million Euros allocate for that purpose.
The ministry statement said that Council concluded that Serbia’s economic growth should be based on export growth, private spending and investments and that monetary policy was implemented well with inflation pressure under control. The Council also said that capital spending has to increase to support long-term growth along with a reform of the public sector salary system and stricter fiscal rules. The Council noted that the banking sector is stable and liquid with a significant drop in non-performing loans, the statement said.