Living in Serbia
Expatriation in Serbia is a series of adjustments. It is a heady combination of excitement and disappointment, but with a positive outlook, it always turns out to be worth it.
In Serbia, do not let the seemingly laid-back ambiance fool you. Serbia is an economy on the rise. Considered an upper-middle economy by the World Bank, the country has an estimated GDP purchasing power parity of 80.602 billion USD for 2010.
The major economic movers and employment sources are telecommunications accounting for 38.7% of Serbia's growth, construction contributing about 11.8%, and transaction about 11.4%. Average working hours in Serbia is 40 hours with the average monthly salary somewhere around 338 Euros. The employee has the right to additional compensation based on overtime work on public holidays, night, and rotating shifts. The average income of an employee is just about sufficient to the cost of living in Serbia. An employee's compensation during sick leaves is at 65% of the salary, and 100% for annual leaves, public holidays, and paid leaves.
The Serbian labor force is a key economic growth driver. Its combination of highly-skilled and competent pool of people, which includes expatriates living in Serbia, and the low-cost skill-set, makes the country an attractive option for many investors. Business etiquette in Serbia is not far from how it is in Western countries. Office attire should be stylishly conservative, making suits and tie for men while blazers and dresses for women are an ideal ensemble.
Serbs are also very family-oriented. If given an opportunity, talking to a Serbian colleague about family would help him warm up to you easier. Make sure always to establish eye contact when in a conversation with your Serbian office mate, as this shows for them your sincerity.