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Serbia's Transport sector made a positive shift in 2011 as it has achieved a growth both in passenger and ton kilometers. This was reflected in growth of revenues of the leading companies in the sector by 9.6%, measured in euros. Serbian Railways was the sector’s leader by revenue, but when it comes to profit state monopolists - Flying Control and Nikola Tesla Airport (Belgrade’s airport) ran the show. It is also important stressing that the PTT (state postal company) has continued to be profitable and increased revenues, with full control over its debts even after being made separate from Telecom Serbia.
Serbian Railways recorded an increase in operating income by 7.4% and a surprisingly high profit of €125 million. However, this was not a result of the sudden improvement of business performance but the government’s decisions to write off some old debts to foreign creditors in amount of around 20 billion RSD. This was a step in long-term efforts to restructure and modernize Serbian Railways. Accordingly, in May 2011 Railways became a joint stock company with a plan to set up a holding company to manage the infrastructure, freight transport, passenger transport, and partly to manage the property. This was supposed to create a clearer picture of the needs for further loans (net debt at the time amounted to more than €500 million despite the government’s write-off), as well as for financing unprofitable lines and excessive number of workers. Zeleznice have continued to inform the public about the US$800 million loan, completion of Prokop train station and modernization of the fleet by the support from international financial institutions. What is, perhaps, most important is that the EBRD (besides lending) an active role in financing and finding consultants engaged in a gradual "settling" companies.
Jat Airways (recently changed the name to Air Serbia and entered a strategic partnership with Etihad) has continued its struggle to reorganize and privatize, while negative EBITDA margin, losses and net debt were becoming more and more severe. Burden of redundant staff, outdated fleet, open skies policy and a tough competition with regional peers have deteriorated its ability to attract strategic partner and stand on their own feet. Adverse external circumstances and unfavorable trends for the entire industry have also, despite considerable efforts of the Government, contributed to the failure in finding a strategic partner for Jat.
The city transport company - GSP Beograd has introduced many significant improvements to its business - business incomes rose by 18% (measured in euros), losses were reduced, and the new modern electronic ticketing system Bus-plus was introduced and was yet to yield benefits in years to come. Still, there is a lot of room for further improvements, especially given that its Novi Sad peer - JGSP Novi Sad has, at first glance, a healthier business. Unlike city transportation companies, regional coach carriers such as Lasta and Nis Ekspres had a much healthier businesses and were expected to further consolidate.
When it comes to companies engaged in transport of goods (Milsped Transportsped and Pro Logistic RPC), despite the crisis, they have achieved a significant growth in operating income, as well as a return on capital ratio exceeding 10%. It is this segment of the market where you can expect the arrival of strong international competitors, which will expand the scope of services, possibly through the development of intermodal transport.
Investments intoSerbia's infrastructure are necessary for further development of this sector, especially into modernization of railway infrastructure and establishment of clearly defined rules for access to the railway infrastructure, construction of Corridor X and XI, as well as the development of Corridor VII and more. Also, no less important is the restructuring and privatization of state-owned enterprises which should increase the efficiency of sector. Better days are yet to come for this sector. SIEPA
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Povezane vesti na srpskom
Συναφείς Ειδήσεις στα Ελληνικά