The biggest problem in communicating economic issues in Serbia is the lack of trained economic journalists and limited freedom of the media, and the basic precondition for economic progress is the rule of law.
These are the conclusions of the “Economic topics in Serbia’s EU integration process” online workshop within the “Prepare to Participate” project conducted by the European Policy Centre (CEP), the National Alliance for Local Economic Development (NALED), and the Center for Contemporary Politics through the European Western Balkans portal.
The director and editor-in-chief of Nova Ekonomija, Biljana Stepanović, pointed out that Serbia’s lack of trained economic journalists affects the reporting of economic issues in the country.
“Economic journalism in Serbia is ‘handicapped’. There are not enough trained economic journalists. You cannot write about budget transparency if you do understand the procedures and mechanisms for how budgets are adopted well,” Stepanović pointed out.
She added that how the “mainstream” media reports on economic topics is very important.
“In economic topics, the power of manipulation is much greater. It is much easier to report on political topics because everyone thinks they understand politics, but with economics, you have to explain everything to citizens from the beginning” said the editor of Nova Ekonomija.
She emphasised that in reporting on economic topics it is important to focus on what directly concerns citizens.
When it comes to economic chapters and Serbia’s progress on the road to the European Union, Stepanović pointed out that tackling the issue of rule of law is necessary for further progress in these areas.
Within this workshop, Dušan Protić (CEP), as the coordinator of the working groups of the National Convention on the European Union (NCEU) for Chapters 1, 3 and 28, Jelena Rančić (NALED), the coordinator of the NCEU working group for Chapter 16 and Slobodan Krstović (NALED), the coordinator of the NCEU working group for Chapter 8, presented current topics in the areas covered by these chapters concerning the internal market and competition and inclusive growth to the workshop’s participants.
News and photos are taken from the European Western Balkans website.