Deputy Prime Minister Bozidar Djelic said on Tuesday that if Serbia wants to switch to a new development model that is based on exports it has to attract billions of euros a year for the export production.
In a conference “Serbia on the path to European standards of business,” Djelic said that foreign investors who want to invest in our country are primarily interested in three topics: construction, taxes and antitrust policies.
Djelic said that Serbia will have better future if it provides just punishment and equal rules for all market participants.
He said that the laws on public property and restitution are necessary to complete the legal framework for investment in our country.
It is necessary to conduct serious fiscal decentralisation and competition among local governments, but not to the detriment of investors, he said.
Serbia has made progress in the issuance of building permits, said the Deputy Prime Minister and stressed that the process is now much shorter than before.
When it comes to taxes, Djelic said that Serbia has attractive direct taxes, but there is still a problem of tax levies and fees that are not covered by tax laws.
Antitrust policy should also be improved through the new law on competition and the possibility that the council impose penalties without the involvement of magistrates, which is also in line with European standards, said Djelic.
He recalled that the Serbian government two weeks ago adopted a financial plan of the Competition Commission, which will provide its further strengthening.
Deputy Head of EU Delegation in Serbia Adriano Martins said that it is important for Serbia to adopt European standards in all areas of operations and thus make business environment more competitive and predictable, which increases the trust of companies.
Martins stressed the importance of implementing the new model of economic development in Serbia, and continuing regulatory reform and improvement of justice.
The EU is a key partner of Serbia, he stressed, adding that in recent months trade exchange between Serbia and the EU increased, as well as exports from Serbia, which is encouraging.
He pointed out that it is important to implement the restitution process and stated that the deadline for Serbia’s advancement in many areas is approaching, but stressed that the speed should not be more important than quality and that only proper introduction of European standards will improve the competitive market.