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Belgrade, Serbia, 21/11/2017

High Collection Periods and Debt Largest Problems in the Economy

Sixth periodic analysis of Business Support Network in October and November 2017, on the sample of 424 businesses and entrepreneurs in 25 cities and municipalities in Serbia showed that there is no improvement in collection periods and that the debt of businesses is still increasing.

Average collection periods locked at 140 days

Companies included in the survey (88 entrepreneurs, 234 small, 57 medium-sized and 45 large companies) on average still wait full 139 days to receive their collectables. In addition, annually a total of 7.6% of receivables remains uncollectible, due to debtor bankruptcy or blockage. Largest increase in collection periods is seen in production of food products (increase of 23 days).

Average debt of Serbian companies still growing

In 2017, risk of bankruptcy of Serbian companies is still extremely high, and highest among the entrepreneurs, micro and small enterprises.

Some changes occurred in the structure of debts. Banks are no longer the institutions who are owed the most – they have been surpassed by debts for parafiscal demands. Interestingly, a percentage of companies burdened by high debt for taxes, custom duties and excises has seen a noticeable reduction. This suggests that the state has been more efficient in taxation, however, that has influenced slower income through parafiscal demands (primarily collected by municipal governments) and suppliers.