In 2020, 70 per cent of companies in Serbia had lower revenue than the previous year, about 1/4 maintained the same level of revenue and only 4 per cent of companies saw growth, according to a survey by the Union of Employers of Serbia on the impact of the pandemic on business.
These data, it says, come from a survey conducted by the Union of Employers of Serbia, with the support of the International Labour Organisation.
The survey, conducted in late 2020 and early 2021 among more than 400 companies, confirmed that the crisis caused by the COVID-19 virus and the measures to prevent the spread of the pandemic did not spare any economic sector, but that there is a significant difference in the position of some industries.
In the hospitality sector, 1/3 of the companies surveyed reported a drop in revenues of more than 80%, while among low-tech companies, 83% reported a drop in revenues.
The most frequently used support measure, according to the results of this research, is the minimum wage for employees and to a lesser extent loans from the Development Fund or the Guarantee System.
More than half of the companies, about 55%, covered the lack of financial resources by using their own financial reserves, the loan moratorium was used by 1/3 of the companies, while loans from banks or the Development Fund/Guarantee System were used by 17% each. On the other hand, 17% of economic entities did not have any problems with finances.
“It is encouraging to see that almost 70% of business owners have said that they will not reduce the number of employees. Redundancies are likely for 15% of respondents, but this should be compensated for by the 16% of companies that believe they will create new jobs in the future. Of the large companies, 1/3 of them believe in such an optimistic scenario,” the research shows.
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