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Economics

Serbia Tackles the Plunging Population Plaguing the Balkans

  • Labor minister creates team to help halt outflow of workers
  • Nation of 7 million lost 5 percent of its population in decade
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Zoran Djordjevic has a challenge: to halt a hemorrhaging of workers that’s seen his country lose more than 5 percent of its population in the last decade.

As Serbia’s labor minister, Djordjevic is facing the same hurdles as every country in the Balkans -- relatively low wages, high unemployment and better-paid jobs beckoning just a short distance away in the European Union. He’s hired a team of economists and statisticians, led by an migration expert, to tackle one of the biggest economic and demographic problems in Europe.