Country Profiles: Serbia
Capital and largest cityBelgrade
Area77, 474 sq km
Population7,269,703 (2007 est.)
Standard Serbian is based on the Shtokavian dialect, and is mutually intelligible with Croatian and Bosnian. Its alphabet is a variety of the Cyrillic alphabet, and for many Western European speakers, it makes up (with Croatian, Montenegrin and Bosnian) just one language - Serbo-Croatian.
After the break-up of Yugoslavia, Serbia became an independent country in 2006 and is a member of OSCE, the UN, the Council of Europe. It is a potential member of the EU. Its GDP is approximately $80 billion, and so is referred to by the World Bank as an upper-middle income country. After the ousting of Milosovic in 2000, the country has undergone significant economic growth, leading it to be referred to as a tiger economy. With favourable economic agreements with both the East and West, Serbia hopes to become an export-oriented economy. Its workforce is split roughly equally between the service, industry and agriculture sectors, with tourism being a chief source of income, as well as industries including sugar, machinery, transport and communication technology, which make up its chief exports. Serbia is the world's main frozen fruit exporter, and grows roughly a third of the world's raspberries.
Serbia is often seen as a bridge between east and west, and is proud of its boast of the oldest airline carriers, founded in 1927. The country has 3 international airports, as well as rail links, and many European routes pass through the country. The Danube River runs through Serbia, and connects the country to the North Sea. 89% of households have telephones while 33% use the internet - a fact which places Serbia ahead of other European countries.
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