The Foreign Investors Council yesterday presented the White Book 2018 to the highest Government officials and stakeholder community, according to which the top 4 performers remain the same as last year, namely, construction land and development, protection of users of financial services, transport and tobacco industry regulations.
Out of 8 priority topics of the FIC-Government White Book Task Force, only real estate and inspection control made notable progress. Digitalization, bankruptcy, and foreign exchange regulations mark moderate progress, while key areas like tax, labor, and food safety lack progress.
In her introductory speech, FIC President Yana Mikhailova noted that in-between two White Books Serbia continued steady but moderate progress in reforms.
– After the positive trends we recorded last year, we expect Serbia to continue a healthy growth – Mikhailova said.
Serbia, she said, is well positioned as an attractive destination for investments, as confirmed by the fact that it attracts new investments, including a large share of investors from the region, each year. The FIC, she said, has noticed Serbia's moderate progress, which has remained roughly on the same level, as 33% of the last year's recommendations were fulfilled, whereas this year, 34% of the recommendations were fulfilled.
– The result has remained the same as last year – Mikhailova said.
She did say, however, that the goals had been bigger and that the fulfillment of 50% of the recommendations from the White Book had been expected.
– The three key FIC expectations from the Government are to achieve sustainable fiscal consolidation and continue structural reforms, improve law implementation, especially in tax area strengthening tax administration and provide more transparency in public consultations – Mikhailova says.
She pointed out that the FIC would continue driving the Serbian economy.
– We will continue implementing new technologies, investing in human resources and including local enterprises in value-chains. We are dedicated to a long-term growth of the Serbian economy – she emphasized.
She said that the White Book gave concrete recommendations for the improvement of the business climate and that a large number of companies had taken part in the preparation of the report, looking to contribute to the improvement of the business climate.
She said that the FIC would continue being a good and reliable partner of the government in boosting the Serbian economy, but added that the Task Force had not achieved the desired goals.
– We are in dialogue with our partner, the government, and we have decided together to reactivate the Task Force – Mikhailova says.