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In Republika Srpska, the majority Serb constitutional entity of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the average monthly net salary of just around $500 covers less than half of local consumers’ basic needs, as calculated by the Union of Syndicates of Republika Srpska.
Popular Bosnian news site Vijesti.ba reports that the Union’s calculations show that the consumer basket, a standard commodity bundle used to used to track inflation in a specific market, stood at around $1130 in mid-2017, while the average net salary barely covers 45% of those basic monthly expenses, including essential food and hygiene items.
Bosnia-Herzegovina’s overall GDP stands at just over $40 billion, with a real GDP growth rate of just around 3% in 2016 and similar growth expected in 2017.
Although the country is still plagued by an unstable economy fostering grey zone businesses and off-the-record employment, Bosnia’s official unemployment rate has hovered at over 40% for years now and about a fifth of the population is currently living below the poverty line.
In July 2017, the average amount that households in Republika Srpska spent on food items was $420 – a whopping 83% of the average net salary.