Support in property tax reform for 40 municipalities and towns

Minister of State Administration and Local Self-Government, Branko Ruzic, Minister of Finance, Dusan Vujovic, and the Ambassador of Switzerland to Serbia, H.E. Philippe Guex have signed a memorandum of understanding, officially launching the project “Property Tax Reform”.

Through this project, about 40 local self-governments throughout Serbia will have the opportunity to update their real estate databases, and thus increase the coverage of property tax collection. A million franc prize fund provided by the Government of Switzerland will be divided among the five of the most successful of them.

Minister of State Administration and Local Self-Government, Branko Ruzic said that this project, which will be implemented with the support of our friends from Switzerland, is very important for the introduction of order in local self-governments.

“Many local self-governments have financial issues, their budgets are in deficit, they are indebted. One way to overcome these difficulties is to increase their own revenues by better tax collection. It is precisely through this project that 40 municipalities and towns will get the opportunity to reorganize their records on taxpayers, which will enable better collection of revenues,” said Ruzic.

The project will last for four years, and even now it is certain that the towns and municipalities will invest the money in infrastructure projects, which will be beneficial for all residents of those local self-governments.

“The Property Tax Reform Project is part of our new strategy of cooperation with Serbia, which will be implemented from 2018 to 2021. We have allocated 91 million euros for this period. With this, our support to Serbia, over the past 30 years of our presence here, will exceed 300 million euros”said Philippe Guex, the Ambassador of Switzerland to Serbia.

In the pilot phase of this project, involving nine municipalities from Eastern Serbia, in the period from 2013 to 2016, the percentage of increase in property tax collection was, on average, 197 percent, while the tax rates did not change.