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Crises Give Birth To New Solutions

Even though we have continuity of government, there’s no doubt that the set of measures the government will have to opt for will differ to the measures from the start of fiscal consolidation and the struggle against the consequences of the pandemic. This special edition presents a treasure trove of proposals for ways to utilise available resources effectively and wisely, preserve much-needed economic growth and create space for the society’s green transition

Afteranextendedperiod, theGovernment of the Republic of Serbia decided to seek a new agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), prior to which it concluded a financial agreement worth a billion dollars with the United Arab Emirates, which will reportedly be used to settle old loan obligations and purchase gas and electricity. These two items of news already clearly demonstrate that we are returning to old topics – in an attempt to forestall the coming consequences of the spreading global crisis, which is this time spurred by the crisis in Ukraine, inflation and expected reductions in economic activity at the global level.

The continuation of fiscal consolidation, implementation of structural reforms with an emphasis on the privatisation and corporatisation of public enterprises, and the control of the budget deficit, which, among other things, await the new Government, will unfold under conditions of rising prices and inflationary pressures, possible energy supply crises and significant, deep-rooted problems that arise from the labour force’s relatively low level of productivity. Much is stated in this publication about the necessary next steps if Serbia intends to preserve its macroeconomic stability and economic growth, primarily in interviews with representatives of international financial institutions.

Crises are times in which dialogue, exchanges of experiences and expertise, as well as the identifying of new solutions, gain paramount importance. There is no doubt that the Government of the Republic of Serbia has at its disposal the resources that are available to business associations. The Foreign Investors Council, with a presence and activity in Serbia dating back two decades, has proven itself to be a reliable partner, but also a driving force in the development of a predictable, competitive and sustainable environment for doing business, promoting Serbia as an excellent place to invest

Potential new aid packages – for both the economy and the population – will no doubt not be as lavish or broad in scope as was the case during the COVID-19 pandemic, because reserves have fallen significantly in the meantime. And even if the situation differed, a question would still arise as to the ultimate efficacy of the results of nonselective measures.

Crises are times in which dialogue, exchanges of experiences and expertise, as well as the identifying of new solutions, gain paramount importance. There is no doubt that the Government of the Republic of Serbia has at its disposal the resources available to business associations. The Foreign Investors Council, with a presence and activity in Serbia dating back two decades, has proven itself to be a reliable partner, but also a driving force in the development of a predictable, competitive and sustainable environment for doing business, promoting Serbia as an excellent place to invest. As a unified voice of investors who have to date invested huge funds in Serbia and created around 100,000 jobs, the FIC remains consistent in its quest to find new opportunities to contribute to Serbia’s overall socioeconomic progress. The Council’s White Book represents one such document, which continuously monitors the advances of the business climate in various areas, but also represents a roadmap for further change.

All times, even those that are most difficult, bring some positive changes. Accordingly, COVID-19 served to significantly accelerate digitalisation and today represents the motor for the transformation and growth of many companies, as is also discussed in this edition. There is also reason to believe that the current crisis could lead to another positive shift, in terms of the green transition.

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