Serbia ranks 69th out of 180 countries in the Heritage Foundation’s 2019 index of economic freedom, moving up 11 positions from the previous year.
Serbia’s overall economic freedom score is 63.9 – up by 1.4 points, the Foundation said on its website.
Serbia has achieved “a large increase in fiscal health and improvements in scores for business freedom and government spending surpassing drops in trade freedom and judicial effectiveness.”
“With strong economic growth and significant fiscal consolidation, the government plans further incremental reforms to improve the business environment. Progress to reform public administration and privatise state-run companies in the electricity, communications, and natural gas sectors will be slower.”
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“Deeper institutional reforms are also needed to modernise tax administration, tackle bureaucracy, reduce corruption, and strengthen the judicial system,” it said.
Of the countries in the region, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Montenegro are worse ranked than Serbia, in the 83rd, 86th and 92nd place respectively, and better ranked were Slovenia (58th), Albania (52nd), Bulgaria (37th) and Macedonia (33rd).
Among 44 countries in the European region, Serbia came in 34th place, and its overall score is below the regional average, but above the world average.
The top ranked countries in this year’s economic freedom index are Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, Switzerland and Australia, with the worst rated are Zimbabwe, the Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea.
(Vecernje Novosti, 30.01.2019)
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