February 6, 2020 Print

Bosnia’s two autonomous entities continue to forge a path that will lead to economic growth for the country, and a recent Economic Freedom Audit (EFA) conducted by Association Multi is providing real solutions that will strengthen opportunities for international trade and future economic liberty.  

Atlas Network and Fraser Institute collaborated with Association Multi, which is based in Tuzla, on the most recent audit. EFAs are designed to convey the advantages of free markets to policy reformers, using data and local knowledge to craft recommendations for policy changes that will help improve the country’s ranking in the Fraser Institute’s annual Economic Freedom of the World Index.

The audit brought together more than 120 politicians, academics, business leaders, and NGO staff, who determined that the biggest barriers to greater economic growth are excessive government spending, the absence of the rule of law, and the myriad of business regulations. The audit also concluded that the processes for conducting international trade through institutions like CEFTA, the EU, and WTO should be strengthened.

“These priorities need to be addressed,” explained Association Multi Director Admir Čavalić. “Bosnia and Herzegovina lacks the capacity and luxury to finance such a large state administration without improving the competitiveness of its economy.” 

Association Multi worked with the British Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina to develop pro-market reforms into Reform Agenda 2, a comprehensive socio-economic proposal that is designed to create a more unified and competitive economy. The embassy, along with a delegation from the European Union, are key stakeholders in working with the Bosnia and Herzegovina federal government and the Government of the Republic of Srpska to create a reform framework. Reform Agenda 2 is divided into four areas: (1) sustainable and accelerated economic growth, (2) reform of public enterprises; (3) health sector reform; and (4) education and labor market reform and digital transformation.

British Ambassador Matt Fields incorporated the recommendations in Association Multi’s audit in hopes of creating new economic opportunities for every Bosnian citizen. With Association’s Multi’s help, Reform Agenda 2 will reinvigorate the economic landscape of Bosnia and ensure the government will be a better steward of every taxpayer dollar.

Atlas Network has supported Economic Freedom Audits in partnership with the Fraser Institute in Bosnia, Greece, Serbia, Argentina, Turkey, Ukraine, Venezuela, Uruguay, Sri Lanka, Oman, Panama, Jordan, Egypt, Côte d’Ivoire, Morocco, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tunisia, Malaysia, Lebanon, Brazil, Namibia, Ghana, Ecuador, and Nepal.