BELGRADE – Prosperity and higher living standards for all citizens are the objectives of the new government, Serbian Prime Minister designate Aleksandar Vucic said Tuesday, announcing salary increases in the public sector.

“The last time I addressed MPs I was told we would have salaries that would be half of what they had been in the previous period. Today we have higher salaries than we had then – primarily thanks to a rise of salaries in the private sector,” Vucic said, presenting the new government’s programme in the parliament.

In the public sector, the police force and defence and military personnel as well as the social welfare, health care and education sectors can expect further salary increases, which will not be small, Vucic said.

The goal is to increase growth by boosting spending, rather than just by boosting exports and investments, he said.

He said 124,000 jobs were created from 2014 to 2016 with an average of more than one factory opened each month, the national currency stabilised and inflation kept at low levels.

Economic, regional and political stability is a condition for new foreign and domestic investments, and stability is also bringing good international reputation and respect for the country because it is able to manage on its own and because it is a sovereign, trusted country that is a dependable partner to its friends, Vucic said.

The previous government achieved stability and the new one will work even harder to achieve prosperity and progress, he said.