The IMF Mission confirmed during its visit to Serbia that the country’s growth in 2019 would amount to at least 3.5%, Finance Minister Sinisa Mali stated today.
Noting that the visit ended the next day, Mali emphasized that it was very important that they had confirmed the state’s prognosis when it comes to the economic growth.
The minister reminded that the country had an economic growth of 4.3% in the past period.
– This year, it will be at least 3.5%, which is very important for banks’ plans. Both the IMF and the World Bank project that Serbia will be the fastest growing economy in the region until 2023 – Minister Mali said.
He added that the living standard would grow significantly, as the prognosis of the IMF and the World Bank is that the GDP per capita, which was around USD 7,200 in 2018, will be around USD 10,400 in 2023, an increase by 44%.
Mali says that the biggest task for the state is to secure an attractive market and that, after the fiscal consolidation and further maintenance of macroeconomic stability, three priorities will be crucial, namely, to raise salaries and pensions, that is, personal consumption, to increase capital investments, as well as the continuation of reducing the taxation of salaries.
When it comes to investments, Mali said that they were record setting in 2019, as over RSD 220 billion should be used from the budget. He added that over 250 billion would be planned for 2020, which is an additional impulse for the growth of Serbia’s economy.
– We will continue reducing the taxation of salaries. Last year, we removed the compensations for unemployment paid by employers of 0.75%. This year, I expect a further reduction of at least one percentage point for 2020 – Mali said and added that this would make the market even better and more attractive.
He emphasized that a strong banking sector was the foundation of the real growth of Serbia’s economy.