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More than 4,000 people leave Serbia every month. 75 percent don't plan on returning

Our workforce, brains and youth are leaving

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4,250 people leave Serbia every month and about 51,000 annually, according to the European statistical office Eurostat.

At the same time, 228,000 young people have left the Western Balkans, which is about 20 percent of the workforce. Official data from our country, however, says that from 2002 to 2011, 150,000 citizens of Serbia went abroad.

A survey conducted by the cabinet of the Minister for Demography and Population Policy Slavica Djukic-Dejanovic shows that three quarters of those who left don't plan to return.

"The census that will be conducted in 2021 will give more accurate data on the brain drain, but I don't think it will be better than the previous ones," says the minister.

The experiences of the countries in our region who have joined the EU show that the outflow of working-age population in recent years has been very high. The IMF says that workforce reductions can only be prevented in two ways - by improving workers' rights and increasing wages.

Minister Djukic-Dejanovic thinks that those young people who don't plan to return to Serbia should be taken into consideration - whose knowledge, experience, skills, contacts and financial resources may also
become Serbia's development potential.

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