OECD Reviews of Labour Market and Social Policies: Serbia 2008

A Labour Market in Transition

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To catch up with more advanced economies, Serbia urgently needs to improve the functioning of its labour market. This report reviews labour market trends and the principle challenges to  labour market policy, making a series of recommendations.

Despite many reforms, new business growth until now has been far too slow to compensate for job losses elsewhere. Recent reforms of labour law should be followed up by further efforts to improve the climate for business and productive work. Labour regulations must be flexible, but they should also be enforced more consistently. For all this to happen, it is essential that an effective social dialogue can take place and that it encompasses expanding and declining segments of the labour market.


Executive Summary

Serbia has achieved high rates of economic growth since 2000, and its transition to a competitive market economy is well underway. But precious time was lost in the 1990s, with the result that GDP per capita is now among the lowest in Europe. The country suffers from a large labour surplus, and the restructuring of the economy is still in a phase when many jobs are bound to disappear at the same time as new ones are created.


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