Serbian government delegation wraps up Davos visit

A Serbian government delegation, including Ministers Bozidar Djelic, Aleksandar Vlahovic and Goran Pitic, and led by Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic, met with International Monetary Fund Deputy Managing Director Anne Krueger at the World Economic Forum.

„I believe that we managed to explain to her (Ms Krueger) that our economy has the capacity to grow with the available financial assistance. But we have funds in the country that cannot enter the economy because of the strict financial conditions,“ said Djindjic.

„We want our economy to loosen up a little and get loans,“ said Djindjic. „We want our economy not to be conditioned by strict mechanisms and we wish to reduce the risk factor attributed to our country.“

This year, says Prime Minister Djindjic, Serbia will see increased activity in business and the economy.

„We succeeded in reaching a macroeconomic level and we showed the world that we are not a nation that demands more than it earns; that we do not go into debt to solve our every-day problems; and that we do not bow to protests and pressure to raise wages and increase spending,“ said the Prime Minister.

Minister of Finance and Economy Bozidar Djelic said that the Serbian government not only aims to achieve stabilisation, but that it wants to dedicate itself to further economic growth and increasing living standards.

„At first sight, stabilisation and discipline are incompatible with the growth and increase of living standards. However, in the long run, they are compatible and therefore we are searching for the right recipe for maintaining the stability of public finances,“ said Djelic.

Djelic said that the atmosphere at the Davos summit was rather pessimistic due to the Iraqi crisis. He said that Serbia wants to stay out of crises and that it has sufficient reserves of oil and petrol. Djelic added that the Serbian government will act in line with trends in the world’s oil market.

At the 33rd summit, which closes tomorrow, Serbian government representatives met with a number of international politicians and business leaders, including US Secretary of State Colin Powell, US Congressman Jim Colby and the new President of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

On Friday, Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic and ministers Djelic, Vlahovic and Pitic presented to representatives of the world’s leading companies Serbia’s economic reforms and the economy’s attractiveness to foreign investors.

Also on Friday, Prime Minister Djindjic and leaders of other Southeastern Europe and European Union countries participated in a panel discussion entitled „New Europe“ which looked at the future of EU enlargement and changes that the European continent as a whole will face in future.

The Davos summit, whose theme this year is „Building Trust“, is dedicated to the overview of the world’s economy. There are some 2,150 important political and business figures from 99 countries attending the summit.