Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic said on Friday that the Serbian government will set up a development bank by September or October this year as an instrument for implementation of development policies of the state and added that this institution will support the export of goods and services.
Cvetkovic said at the “Eurobank EFG Serbian Expo 2011” that this development institution will be very much different from other commercial banks and will be the state’s instrument for implementing its development policies, noting that this bank will be a non-profit institution.
Other financial institutions that already exist in Serbia, such as the Agency for Export Insurance and Financing and the Development Fund, could be integrated into the Development Bank or their current activities could be reduced.
The regulations of the National Bank of Serbia (NBS) on the adequacy of capital will apply to this bank, the Prime Minister said.
As an illustrative example of how the Development Bank may support export of services, Cvetkovic said that it can provide guarantees to construction companies in Serbia to take advance payment for work contracted abroad.
He said that Serbia’s goal is to achieve long-term export growth of 10% and to double its current level of gross domestic product by 2020.
To accomplish this goal there is a good starting point, said Cvetkovic noting that we need to do more, including infrastructure development, modernisation of the labour market and public sector reform.
Cvetkovic said that the development of road and railway infrastructure remains a priority of the government of Serbia in the future, adding that this is the basis for new investment and developing export-oriented production, which will lead to job creation and higher living standards.
The Serbian government together with NBS will continue to pursue a stable and predictable fiscal and monetary policy to ensure macroeconomic policy, said the Prime Minister.
Our solid macroeconomic policy is backed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) with which we successfully terminated the arrangement in April, said Cvetkovic and announced that in the next few months Serbia will get a new deal with this financial institution as a precaution.
The Prime Minister recalled that last year Serbia achieved export growth of 24%, while imports grew with a rate of less than 10%, so the export / import ratio was slightly below 60%.
In 2011 we have similar trends, and the Serbian government will continue with its economic reforms to ensure that it is long-term and sustainable, he said.
Speaking about the benefits of investing in Serbia, Cvetkovic said that Serbia has solid human, material and natural resources and a favourable geostrategic location, and the government is committed to the process of European integration and has accomplished a series of reforms in political and economic system.
Cvetkovic said that the working group in charge of activities related to the sale of shares owned by the Republic of Serbia in Telekom Srbija will make an announcement on 28 March, which is the deadline for the analysis of the bids that arrived in the tender.
Source Serbian Government.