"You do not have to pay taxes and contributions now, the state will pay"
Finance Minister Sinisa Mali said that a package of economic measures to help the economy in coronavirus epidemic will be 50 percent of the Serbian state budgetSource: Tanjug
Yesterday's press conference presented an economic program to help the economy with 5.1 billion euros, and, according to the minister, it is aid amounting to 11 percent of Serbia's gross domestic product.
The measures, Mali told RTS, have two goals, preserving jobs and supporting small and medium-sized enterprises.
He states that the minimum wage will be paid to 900.000 entrepreneurs, tailors, physicians, taxi drivers.
"We will, if you have no income, pay three minimum wages starting May 1, which is about 90.000 dinars of aid for each of them. All businesses that want to be part of the program must not lay off more than 10 percent of employees they had on March 15", the finance minister points out.
According to him, one of the biggest demands of entrepreneurs was for the state to exempt them from paying taxes and contributions.
"You do not have to pay taxes and contributions now, the state will pay. If you do not have enough funds to pay for the net salaries, the state will pay the minimum wages", Mali points out.
He explains that the state will deposit the money into a new, dedicated company account, but directly to workers' accounts.
"Non-payment of taxes and contributions means that we will have 161 billion dinars less money in the budget. We will have to replace it, but the whole package is made so that the biggest burden of the crisis will be borne by the state. You will receive money from us so that we can get out of the crisis with the least possible consequences", the minister points out.
When it came to helping the citizens with the aid of 100 euros, Mali said the citizens would get the money on their accounts a few weeks after the state of emergency was lifted.
"You see how strong our state is, we are stable now. Let's raise our optimism and go through the crisis together, but also show the strength of our country. That money will be spent, in order to be spent, someone has to produce, you will turn your economy around”, Mali points out.
Talking about the health of the President of Serbia, who is not feeling well, Mali said that Vucic's fatigue and exhaustion have caught up with him.
"You know he has health problems, he has not been able to present an economic program. He lives for the economy, he heads the Crisis Coordination Body, but he has not been able to come. These are his measures. Without him, these measures would not have been possible. I hope that he will recover quickly”, the minister said.
He reiterated that the president would address the citizens in the next 48 hours.