Serbia expects to attract 2.5 billion euro of new investments in the nearest future since it is listed by the World Bank as one of the 12 most successful countries in implementing economic reforms and investment laws.
The news from Washington is a boost to Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica’s minority government, which has been in power for the past 18 months and is struggling with unemployment rate of over 25 per cent, 12 billion dollar foreign debt and seven billion dollar trade deficit.
“Serbia has never been in a better position to become an ‘economic tiger’ in the region” Paridovic asserted. “The World Bank report is a proof that foreign investors have become aware of this fact and we expect their presence in much greater numbers, with ambitious projects”, he added.
Serbia has a population of eight million, not including the southern Kosovo province, which has been under United Nations control since 1999. The average per capita investment rate in the Balkans currently stands at 159 euro, but Serbia has a long road to cross to reach neighboring Croatia with 2003 per capita investments at 440 euro.
The Italian embassy in Belgrade meanwhile announced that in the past year exports from Italy to Serbia increased by 42 per cent and that Italy has become the main consumer of Serbian goods among European Union countries, the AKI reports.