Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic stated on Sunday, September 18, that the public debt of Serbia in the eight months of 2016 had been reduced by EUR 610 million and was 71.9% of the gross domestic product (GDP), and that the economic growth of Serbia would be the greatest one in that part of the Balkans in 2016.
Vucic said in his interview for RTS that it had been planned for the share of the public debt in the GDP in 2016 to be 78-79%. As he explained, the public debt was reduced by the return of EUR 410 million, and by EUR 200 million based on the shift in the exchange rates of the dollar and the euro.
According to Vucic, Serbia's budget surplus is currently RSD 35 billion, and the country's economic growth in six months is 2.9%.
– Serbia will have the greatest economic growth in this part of the Balkans. For the first time, we have a surplus in the trade with all the countries of the former Yugoslavia, excluding Slovenia. The export is larger the the import by 4.5% – Vucic pointed out.
He said that he expected that the average salary in 2017 would be EUR 450, and that it would amount to EUR 500 in 2018.
The prime minister emphasized that Serbia was able to compete economically with other countries, because it would have an economic growth of at least 3% in the years to come, as well as large foreign investments, above all from China and the European countries.
– The growth 3% a year amounts to around EUR 1.1 billion of newly created value, which is the amount of debt we can incur without increasing the percentage of the public debt in the GDP. We can also raise salaries and pensions – Vucic said in his interview for RTS.
He reminded that the minimum wage had been increased by 7.43%, which means that those with lowest salaries would have them increased by at least 8%.
Vucic said that he expected a growth in the number of tourists by 10% in the next year, which would be aided by a publication on the country's tourist potentials, which would be available in bookstores around the world. He also said that all 46,000 vouchers for the stimulation of local tourism had been distributed in 2016.