Coat of Arms
President Tomislav Nikolić
»88,361 km2 (113th)
»$90.746 billion (78th)
» Per capita -$12,605 (excluding Kosovo) (83rd)
»$42.648 billion (86th)
» Per capita -$5,924 (excluding Kosovo) (88th)
»Serbian dinar (RSD)
Serbia is a sovereign state situated at the crossroads between Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Pannonian Plain and the central Balkans.
Serbia is landlocked and borders Hungary to the north; Romania and Bulgaria to the east; Macedonia to the south; and Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro to the west; it also claims a border with Albania through the disputed territory of Kosovo.
The capital of Serbia, Belgrade, is one of the largest cities in Southeast Europe.
The industry is the economy sector which was hardest hit by the UN sanctions and trade embargo and NATO bombing during the 1990s and transition to market economy during the 2000s.
The industrial output saw dramatic downsizing: in 2013 it is expected to be only a half of that of 1989. Main industrial sectors include: automotive, mining, non-ferrous metals, food processing, electronics, pharmaceuticals, clothes.
Automotive industry (with FIAT as a fore bearer) is dominated by cluster located in Kragujevac and its vicinity and contributes to country’s exports with about $2 billion.
Serbia’s mining industry is comparatively strong: country is world’s 18th largest producer of coal (7th in the Europe) extracted from large deposits in Kolubara and Kostolac basins; it is also world’s 23rd largest (3rd in Europe) producer of copper which is extracted by RTB Bor, a large domestic copper mining company; significant gold extraction is developed around Majdanpek.
Food industry is well known both regionally and internationally and is one of the strong points of the economy.
Some of the international brand-names established production in Serbia: PepsiCo and Nestlein food-processing sector; Coca-Cola (Belgrade), Heineken (Novi Sad) and Carlsberg (Bačka Palanka) in beverage industry; Nordzucker in sugar industry.
Clothing and textile industry has seen a surge in recent years with significant greenfield investments by foreign companies: Benneton in Niš, Geox in Vranje, Calzedonia in Sombor, Falke in Leskovac and others.
Serbia’s electronics industry had its peak in the 1980s and the industry today is only a third of what it was back then, but has witnessed a something of revival in last decade with investments of companies such as Siemens (wind turbines) in Subotica, Panasonic (lighting devices) in Svilajnac, and Gorenje (electrical home appliances) in Valjevo.
The pharmaceutical industry in Serbia comprises 20 manufacturers of generic drugs, of which Hemofarm in Vršac and Galenika in Belgrade, account for 80% of production volume. Domestic production meets over 60% of the local demand.
Top 5 Products imported by Serbia
- Refined Petroleum (5.8%),
- Petroleum Gas (5.1%),
- Crude Petroleum (4.3%),
- Packaged Medicaments (3.4%),
- Cars (2.5%)
Top 5 Import origins of Serbia
- Germany (11%),
- Russia (9.5%),
- Italy (8.6%),
- China (6.5%),
- Hungary (5.7%)
Serbia is not a mass-tourism destination but nevertheless has diverse range of touristic products.
In 2013, total of 2,192,435 tourists were recorded in accommodations, of which 921,768 were foreign while the average length of a tourist stay was 3.6 days (2.3 days for foreign tourists).
Foreign exchange earnings for the same year were estimated at $1.053 billion while total income from tourism is estimated at $2.5 billion.
Tourism is mainly focused on the mountains and spas of the country, which are mostly visited by domestic tourists, as well as Belgrade which is preferred choice of foreign tourists.
The most famous mountain resorts are Kopaonik, Stara Planina, and Zlatibor. There are also many spas in Serbia, the biggest of which is Vrnjačka Banja, Soko Banja, and Banja Koviljača.
City break and conference tourism is developed in Belgrade (which was visited by 517,401 foreign tourists in 2013, more than a half of all international visits to the country) and to a lesser degree Novi Sad.
Other touristic products that Serbia offer are natural wonders like Đavolja varoš, Christian pilgrimage to the many Orthodox monasteries across the country and the river cruising along the Danube.
There are several internationally popular music festivals held in Serbia, such as EXIT (with 25–30,000 foreign visitors coming from 60 different countries) and the Guča trumpet festival.
- Serbia’s many sights include stunning castles, Medieval monasteries, lovely traditional villages and bustling cities with baroque parks and art-deco architecture.
- Its capital, Belgrade, is a lively and upcoming European city with the Sava and Danube rivers running right trough it. Certainly not a boring city, it has a plethora of interesting destinations, old and new.. Stroll through Prince Michael Street, the cities main pedestrian street, or stop by for a drink in one of Skadarlija ‘s many restaurants.
- There are a lot of old buildings on all four banks, including the huge Kalemegdan Fortress, that has been built, modeled and remodeled by the Celts, Romans, Byzantines, Serbs, Austrians and Turks in a time span of over 2000 years.
- Once an important military fortification, it now serves as a central park of Belgrade with beautiful views facing the north-west. Within the fort is a zoo, a military museum, a couple churches rich in history, galleries, parks, sports fields, etc.
- It has a multitude of various towers and ports, and two long walking/biking paths along both rivers.
- Other Belgrade sights include the modern Temple of Saint Sava, the National Museum, and the Old Court palace.
- The river island Ada Ciganlija has an artificial lake and an 8 km long gravel beach and is a close option if one doesn’t want to bathe in pools. Should one want the contrary, Tasmajdan park is, along with the famous church of St. Mark, filled with pools and even houses a waterpolo team.
- It’s a lively place with lots of sports and entertainment, cafes and restaurants, some of which are opened the whole year round. Zemun, now part of the Belgrade urban area, developed under Hungarian and later Habsburg influence for most of its history and is a pleasant area with a distinct feeling dissimilar to Belgrade itself. It offers plenty of entertainment and restaurants on its Zemun quay, on the bank of the Danube.
- Novi Sad is another delightful city, with the Petrovaradin Fortress (one of the greatest and best preserved XVIII century fortresses in Europe) as it’s main sight. The city also has a number of lovely parks that just ask for a long afternoon stroll or picnic. Sremski Karlovci near Novi Sad has a rich history, numerous monuments, museums, churches, galleries and famous wine cellars. Town of Novi Pazar, your last stop before Kosovo, has a distinct Turkish heritage and a bunch of great monasteries in the surrounding area.
- Mokra Gora is a village reconstructed in a traditional style in the popular mountain region of Zlatibor.
- The village of Sirogojno is in the same region, with a nice open air museum and lots of traditional crafts on display. Very nearby is the traditional village of Drvengrad, also known as Mećavnik, which the Serbian film director Emir Kusturica built for his film Life Is a Miracle.
- After you see the villages, Zlatibor offers some great ski resorts, hiking trails and landscapes. Or hop on the Šargan Eight, a narrow-gauge heritage railway running from Mokra Gora to Šargan Vitasi station (Zlatibor and Tara mountains).
- When it comes to the number of bridges and tunnels, and the rise of 18 per thousand, Sargan Eight is unique in Europe and a ride on the 8-shaped track is a popular pass time for tourists.