The curfew relaxed as of Tuesday 21, flights as of May 1

In an interview for the Pink TV, the Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic indicated the first dates for the country’s exit from the semi-quarantine state.

From tomorrow, April 21, the curfew will be shortened by one hour and it will last from 6 pm to 5 am. In addition, all artisan shops will reopen.

“We expect that, as of April 27, other businesses, shops (except those located in shopping malls) to open too, but if the contagion trend worsens, we reserve the right to change the dates. Even personal care facilities (hairdressers, beauty salons, gyms) may reopen on April 27, providing they exercise special precaution, such as having a limited number of customers on the premises and the staff using masks,” said Vucic.

Restaurants and bars will re-open between May 4 and 11, again with strict physical distance measure in place and restrictions regarding the number of guests. Shopping centres, spas and inter-municipal public transport will reopen during the same period.

Further relaxation of the curfew is planned from May 3.

Within a maximum of ten days, a factory in Ruma will start producing 96,000 masks per day, while Galenika has already started production of 372,000 chloroquine tablets, the supposed therapy for the Covid-19 infection. In Crvenka, 15,000 tons of rubbing alcohol per day will be produced.

THE ECONOMIC CONSEQUENCES

According to the International Monetary Fund, Serbia will record a 3% drop in Gross Domestic Product in 2020, followed by a 7.5% growth in 2021. Vucic underlined that, according to those projections Serbia, should have the best economic performance out of all European countries in 2020.

“I know there are neighbouring countries hoping for an economically weak Serbia, but Serbia’s performance will be very good and we will continue to attract investments if we continue to be disciplined,” he went on to say.

The one-off payment of 100 euro to all Serbian citizens over the age of 18 will take place between May 11 and 12. Vucic said that that was the so-called financial “helicopter” measure also implemented by Donald Trump and Shinzo Abe in the United States and Japan respectively.

“Japan gave 850 euro to each of its citizens. We certainly do not have such resources, but I do not understand why the same measure in Serbia is proclaimed scandalous and populistic despite our budget able to cover it,” Vucic said.  

On the other hand, 145,570 enterprises and businesses have qualified for subsidies and tax relief measures.

As for holidays, it will not be possible to ban people from going on a holiday abroad, but incentives will be given to people who decide to vacation in Serbia, including holiday vouchers to pensioners and unemployed people. “From May 1, Belgrade airport will reopen for international flights to a limited extent, subject to the necessary consent of the healthcare experts,” the president added.

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The Chamber of Commerce of Serbia (SCC) will today recommend to the Ministry of State Administration and Local Self-Government and the Government of Serbia that the opening hours of shops should be extended to 5 pm, said Zarko Malinovic, secretary of the Chamber of Commerce Association.

Malinovic told Prva TV that the goal is to extend the opening hours of retail outlets, reduce queues in front of shops, but also to reduce the pressure on retailers.

He added that the supply chain is functioning well and that there is enough food in the shops and the stock.

Malinovic pointed out that consumer behaviour was the same as last year’s Easter and added that foods such as flour and salt recorded a fall in demand last week.

Malinovic also said that the reopening of green outdoor markets would make it much easier for a number of producers who could not adapt to selling their product on the e-market.

(TV Pink, Politika, 20.04.2020)

http://www.politika.rs/scc/clanak/452636/Preporuka-Privredne-komore-da-od-danas-prodavnice-rade-do-17-casova

This post is also available in: Italiano

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