Belgrade, March 06, 2012
SERBIA – ECONOMY, FINANCE
TADIC: SMALL AND MEDIUM COMPANIES HOLD KEY TO EMPLOYMENT
BELGRADE, March 05 (Tanjug) - Serbian President Boris Tadic visited the Art Ival chocolate factory in Belgrade on Monday and stated that all the people in Serbia with courage and initiative should start a business because it is the only way to fight unemployment.
Small and medium companies are of huge significance to the country and represent the heart of its economic system, he said. Government will soon start a project with a wide range, aiming to get people, their talents and courage involved, he remarked.
According to Tadic, Serbia is a productive nation, and not one focused on services.
That is a good thing, but Serbia has lost 10 years, and its industry has become obsolete and unable to compete, he added.
So it is important to expand knowledge and apply it to people and production, he concluded.
TADIC: CRISIS TO END LATE 2012 OR EARLY 2013
BELGRADE, March 05 (Tanjug) - Serbian President Boris Tadic stated Monday that according to current assessments the economic crisis could end late in 2012 or early in 2013.
"No crisis lasted forever, this one too shall pass, and according to certain assessments the end of it could be expected late in 2012 or early in 2013," Tadic said, adding that Serbia has nonetheless succeeded to prevent its economy from sinking.
Tadic recalled that all economic parameters in the first quarter of 2011 were good, and that Serbia recoded a major growth, adding that therefore the 2012 growth was assessed to reach four percent. "The current circumstances are not favorable for a strong growth, but the capacities should be safeguarded for the day when the world will go out of crisis," Tadic concluded.
CVETKOVIC: SAVING IS GOVERNMENT'S PRIORITY
KOPAONIK, March 06 (Tanjug) - Serbian Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic stated Tuesday that the government has to stick to the saving measures bearing in mind the circumstances in which the Serbian economy operates.
"The government has to stick to the saving measures, and projected budget deficit, bearing in mind that its revision cannot be made as we are approaching the elections," Cvetkovic said at the Kopaonik Business Forum, adding that all suggestions by the forum are welcome in creating the government's economic policy.
Cvetkovic underlined that the 2012 economic growth projections have been reduced, setting the new prognosis between zero and 0.5 percent, which will condition a budget revision. The 19th annual Business Forum, expected to offer possible solutions to a number of difficulties the Serbian economy is faced with in the times of the global crisis, opened on Mt. Kopaonik on Tuesday.
Opening the meeting, President of the Serbian Association of Economist Aleksandar Vlahovic said that the aim is to help creators of the economic policy through a constructive discussion to find the best and most efficient optimal solutions for the Serbian economy.
He pointed out that the public expenditure, a lack of public investments, uncompetitive economy, and an inefficient public administration are the key problems of the country's economy.
Vlahovic stressed that the EU candidate status Serbia has obtained is a big chance which will provide large inflow of investments, but also a chance to reform our economy and the public sector successfully prior to becoming the fullfledged member of the Union.
President of the Serbian Association of Corporate Directors Toplica Spasojevic said that the past three years were difficult, adding that 2012 will not be any better.
Therefore, we have to regulate the economic environment ourselves, modeled on the EU, as well as carry out the complete reform, boost agriculture, infrastructure, and energy, reduce unemployment rate and launch a new investment cycle, Spasojevic said.
We also have to encourage entrepreneurship and make it possible for young people who left the country to come back to Serbia, since this is the only way for things to improve here, he noted.
The meeting, held from March 6 to 8, is to gather over 500 participants, including economic experts, representatives of economy and banks, ambassadors of Serbia's most important trade partners, and main economists of certain political parties.
As announced, an address will be delivered by National Bank of Serbia Governor Dejan Soskic, while Deputy Prime Minister Verica Kalanovic and Minister of Trade and Agriculture Dusan Petrovic have confirmed their attendance.
WORLD PREMIERE OF SERBIAN CAR IN GENEVA
BELGRADE, March 06 (Tanjug) - SerboItalian car Fiat 500L will have its world premiere at the 82nd International Motor Show in Geneva on Tuesday.
The officials of the Italian Fiat and the Serbian state leadership will address the press at the presentation of the new Fiat 500L, which will be produced only in Kragujevac (central Serbia).
Serbian President Boris Tadic will today visit Fiat's exhibition space at the International Motor Show in Geneva. The president will also meet with CEO of FiatChrysler Sergio Marchionne, Tadic's press service has released in a statement. The world premiere of FIAT 500L will also be attended by Serbian Minister of Economy Nebojsa Ciric.
The FiatChrysler published the first official video of the new model on Monday. Back in early February, the company released the first photos, and announced that the starting price will be around EUR 16,000. It was also confirmed that FIAT 500 L will be produced in two gasoline versions and one with diesel engine.
AMBASSADOR SAYS JAPAN WILL CONTINUE TO ASSIST SERBIA
BELGRADE, March 05 (Beta) - Japanese Ambassador to Serbia Toshio Tsunozaki said in Kraljevo, on March 5, that Japan will continue to assist Serbia.
The ambassador toured Kraljevo's Dimitrije Tucovic school, which received a EUR62,272 donation for new windows, ceilings and floors from the Japanese government's Serbian Education Improvement Project.
To date, 136 projects have been executed to provide for the basic needs of Serbia's population, and education is one of the main areas of focus in Serbia for the government of Japan, Tsunozaki said, adding that his country will continue to support that sector's basic needs despite the difficult situation in Japan after a devastating earthquake.
Japanese assistance funneled through basic population needs projects since 1999 totals roughly EUR7.6 million, while the overall aid sent to Serbia from Japan in the same period is over EUR200 million.
HENKEL OPENS NEW FACTORY IN INDJIJA
BELGRADE, March 05 (Tanjug) - German company Henkel will build another factory in Indjija, which will be a regional centre for the production of facade mortar for the entire Balkans, and the construction should start early next year, Henkel Serbia executive director Jovan Sarenac announced on Monday.
Between 15 and 20 million euros will be invested in the first stage of the construction, Sarenac told reporters at the Media Centre, where a conference marking World Energy Efficiency Day was held.
The new plant will provide 50 new jobs, he explained, adding that they were currently conducting preliminary negotiations with the local authorities in Indjija and Serbia Investment and Export Promotion Agency.
The production line will be fully automatic, equipped with he latest in technology, and able to produce around 50,000 tonnes, he said.
It is going to be one of the largest factories in the region, Sarenac added.
GORENJE OPENS NEW FACTORY IN ZAJECAR
ZAJECAR, March 05 (Tanjug) - The Slovenian company Gorenje opened on March 5 a washing machine factory in Zajecar that will employ 300 workers and in which EUR2.9 million was invested.
The opening of the factory was attended by Deputy Prime Minister Verica Kalanovic, who said that this was the largest investment in industry in eastern Serbia and added that the government had to support projects such as Gorenje's investment because they encouraged the arrival of other investors.
Gorenje also manufactures in factories in Valjevo and Stara Pazova, meaning that the company will employ more than 1,500 workers in total in Serbia and investment will amount to more than EUR60 million.
The Slovenian firm recently began expanding production in Valjevo, where it is building a new factory floor, investing an additional EUR20 million and planning to employ 400 new workers.
SERBIA – EU CANDIDACY - REACTIONS
CAMERON: IF SERBIA GOES ON LIKE THIS, TALKS SOON
BELGRADE, March 06 (Tanjug) - There more work to be done, but if Serbia continues on its present path, there is no reason why it shouldn't be possible to start EU accession negotiations before too long, British Prime Minister David Cameron has stated.
He said during Monday's address at a session of the House of Commons dedicated to Serbia that Britain has always been a strong supporter of the EU enlargement from Eastern Europe to the countries of the Western Balkans, and this policy has clearly demonstrated success in embedding support for democracy and human rights across the continent.
According to the official website of the British prime minister, Cameron said that he was particularly pleased that the Council granted Serbia candidate status, and underlined the important role of Serbian President Boris Tadic.
I have no doubt this decision would not have been possible without the courageous leadership of President Tadic. It was he who secured the arrest of Ratko Mladic closing one of the darkest chapters in Serbian history. And it was he who took the brave decision to engage in a dialogue with Kosovo, Cameron stated.
NATO SEC. GEN. WELCOMES SERBIA'S CANDIDATE STATUS
BRUSSELS, March 05 (Tanjug) - NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen welcomed Monday Serbia's EU candidate status, and expressed expectation that the entire West Balkan region will be integrated into the European Union.
I welcome the agreements reached in the BelgradePristina dialogue and Serbia's candidate status, Rasmussen told journalists in Brussels ahead of the NATO summit in Chicago.
This is good both for Serbia and the entire West Balkan region, Rasmussen underlined, adding that the candidate status is at the same time a result of the reforms, which have been carried out up to now, as well as an incentive for future democratic changes.
The secretary general said that he wants to see Serbia and all other countries of the West Balkans integrated into the EuroAtlantic family.