A favourable macroeconomic environment will be noticeable in the Central and Eastern Europe countries which will record a growth of over 3.5% in 2018, for the ninth consecutive year. Also, these countries will experience a credit growth, especially Serbia and Croatia.
These are just some of the conclusions from the annual EBRD Assembly.
“After the past growth slowdown in Serbia, a strong momentum is expected in 2018 and next year. All macroeconomic indicators are above expectations. Imports are growing slightly faster than exports, but this because Serbia is importing equipment to facilitate investments which is good”, says Artur Radziwill is EBRD’s Director for Country Economics and Policy.
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Radziwill also points out that the investments, especially those made by the private sector, the completion of reforms and the integration with the European Union market are crucial for the sustainable growth of the Serbian economy.
The EBRD’s growth forecast for Serbia is somewhat more conservative, because the growth can be affected by, for instance, bad weather.
The forecast made by UniCredit Bank is somewhat bolder. According to the bank, the Bulgarian economy will grow most – 4.3%, Turkey 4%, Serbia 3.1%, and Croatia 2.8%, while the South-East European average is 2.6% and Eurozone’s 2.1%.
Last year, Russia and Greece came out of the recession, and this year they are expected to record pretty high growth rates.
Matteo Ferrazzi, Commercial Planning Manager at UniCredit Bank, says that the Serbian IT sector is leading in reducing the external deficit.
“On the other hand, Serbia has the leading experts in blockchain technology and you also have an extraordinary growth in the use of digital technologies and banking. Serbian population is young, because over 55 % of our clients actively use these types of services”, Ferrazzi ads.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is the largest investor in the Western Balkans, as it also invests in the private sector.
Although the EBRD operates on three continents, there is a growing interest in the Western Balkans, so the bank’s assembly is going to be held in Sarajevo next year.
(Vecernje Novosti, 13.05.2018)
This post is also available in: Italiano