Serbia Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022

Basic information about the territory

Serbia Basic Information

Subchapters:

  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

Serbia is a parliamentary republic. Legislative power is exercised by the unicameral National Assembly, whose 250 deputies are elected in direct elections based on the proportional system for four-year terms.

Presidential, parliamentary and local elections were held in Serbia on April 3, 2022. The first meeting of the new parliament will probably take place at the end of May 2022, after which there is a deadline of 90 days according to the constitution for the appointment of a new government. The composition of the new government will be incorporated into the STI after its appointment.

The head of state is the directly elected president for a five-year term. In the last elections in April 2017, the old-fashioned president Aleksandar Vučić won again, and he remains by far the most popular Serbian politician thanks to real economic results and the support of the vast majority of the media.

In the previous parliamentary elections (June 21, 2020), the Serbian Progressive Party/SNS won (60.65% of votes, 188 mandates). On 5 October 2020, the President and Chairman of the SNS, Aleksandar Vučić, commissioned Ana Brnabić to form a government. Its 23-member government, in which, in addition to CIS ministers, representatives of the Socialist Party of Serbia/SPS and the Serbian Patriotic Union/SPAS also sat, won the confidence of the parliament on 28 October 2020. Among the government’s priorities, the former Prime Minister included the fight against the covid-19 pandemic, ensuring the vital interests of Serbs in Kosovo, the fight against organized crime, preserving the country’s independence and its independent decision-making, accelerating reforms on the way to the EU and strengthening the economy. The concrete goals of the new government include the construction of the subway, railways and highways, investments in clinical centers (Belgrade, Niš, Vranje) and hospitals (Leskovac, Prokuplje) as well as in defense. Check computerminus to learn more about Serbia political system.

Composition of the Serbian government (resulting from the 2020 elections): Prime Minister – Ana Brnabić (SNS), First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development – Branko Ružić (SPS), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management – Branislav Nedimović (SNS), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Mining and Energy – Zorana Mihajlović (SNS), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense – Nebojša Stefanović (SNS), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Culture and Information – Maja Gojković (SNS), Minister of Finance – Siniša Mali (SNS), Minister of Economy – Andjelka Atanasković (SNS), Minister of Environment – Irena Vujović (SNS), Minister of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure – Tomislav Momirović (non-party), Minister of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications – Tatjana Matić (SDPS),Minister of Justice – Maja Popović (non-party), Minister of State Administration and Local Self-Government – ​​Marija Obradović (SNS), Minister of Human Rights and Social Dialogue – Gordana Čomić (DS until May 2020, currently non-party), Minister of the Interior – Aleksandar Vulin ( Socialist Movement), Minister of Foreign Affairs – Nikola Selaković (SNS), Minister for European Integration – Jadranka Joksimović (SNS), Minister of Health – Zlatibor Lončar (SNS), Minister of Labour, Employment and Veterans and Social Affairs – Darija Kisić-Tepavčević (SNS ), Minister of Demography and Family Care – Radomir Ratko Dmitrović (SPAS – Serbian Patriotic Union), Minister of Youth and Sports – Vanja Udovičić (SNS), Minister of Rural Care – Milan Krkobabić (PUPS), Minister without portfolio, responsible for innovation and technological development – Nenad Popović (SNP – Serbian People’s Party),minister without portfolio, responsible for the development of underdeveloped municipalities – Novica Tončev (SPS).

Foreign policy of the country

Serbia’s official strategic goal is to join the European Union. Serbian foreign policy is characterized by pragmatism driven by economic interests and tries to make the most of the balance between West and East. In addition to Brussels, Moscow, Beijing and Washington are identified as the other basic azimuths of Serbian foreign policy, and the emphasis is also placed on good relations with neighboring countries. At the same time, the highest priority is considered to be “the defense of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Serbia”, which in practice means a campaign for the recognition of Kosovo and against its membership in international organizations. Check relationshipsplus for Serbia defense and foreign policy.

The process of bringing Serbia closer to EU membership was started in April 2008 with the signing of the Stabilization and Association Agreement, which entered into force on 09/01/2013 (the delay occurred mainly as a result of Belgrade’s demand for full cooperation with the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia/ICTY). In December 2009, Serbia submitted an application for EU membership, received candidate status in March 2012, and accession talks began in January 2014. Out of a total of 35 negotiation chapters, 18 have been opened so far, of which 2 have been provisionally closed.

Serbia declared “military neutrality” in a parliamentary resolution at the end of 2007, but this is not part of the constitution and was officially confirmed for the first time in the National Security Strategy approved by the government and parliament only in December 2019. However, the basic line of military neutrality does not prevent Serbia from cooperating in the military and security field with NATO (Individual Partnership Action Plan/IPAP) and with Russia and other member states of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (observer status).

Population

According to the current data of the Statistical Office of Serbia, the total population is 6,871,547. In the period January – December 2021, 62,062 newborns were born, or 0.6% more than in 2020. The number of deaths in 2021 was 135,901, or 18.2 % more than in 2020.

The population density is about 90 inhabitants per square kilometer. The average life expectancy is 73 years for men, 78 for women. 65% of the population is of working age (15-64 years). There are approximately 2.225 million people officially employed, the majority of whom work in the private sector, with approximately 30% of workers in the state sector. The annual population increase is negative and reached -5.4‰. The share of young people is low (14.3%) with a tendency to further decrease, while the share of seniors is constantly growing. According to the medium-term projection, in 2041 the total number of inhabitants would be 6,522,206, with an average age of 4 years (0-15 years 11.7%, over 65 years 33.9%).

As for the national composition, Serbs make up 83.32% of the population, followed by Hungarians (3.53%), Roma (2.05%), Bosniaks (2.02%), Croats (0.80%), Slovaks (0.73%), Montenegrins (0.54%). A total of 21 national minorities are officially registered in Serbia, including the Czech expatriate community. The religion of the population is distributed as follows: Orthodox 84.6%, Catholics 5%, Muslims 3%, atheists 1.1%, Protestants 0.9%, others 5.4%.