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macrohistory & world report

Republic of Montenegro

Map of Montenegro

Montenegro with its capital Podgorica and neighboring states. For a photo of the coastal town of Budva click here.

World Factbook as of November 2014: "Montenegro's economy is slowly transitioning to a market system, but the state sector remains large and additional institutional changes are needed. The economy relies heavily on foreign tourism and the export of refined metals. Unprofitable state-owned enterprises, especially the Podgorica Aluminum Kombine, the country's largest exporter, weigh heavily on public finances. During the MILOSEVIC era, Montenegro severed its economy from Serbia, maintained its own central bank, adopted the Deutsche Mark, then shifted to the euro - rather than the Yugoslav dinar - as official currency, collected customs tariffs, and managed its own budget. The 2006 dissolution of the loose political union between Serbia and Montenegro led to separate memberships in several international financial institutions, such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. In January 2007, Montenegro joined the World Bank and IMF. Montenegro became the 156th member of World Trade Organization in December 2011. The European Council (EC) granted candidate country status to Montenegro at the December 2010 session. Montenegro began negotiations to join the EC in June, 2012, having met the conditions set down by the European Council, which called on Montenegro to take steps to fight corruption and organized crime. Unemployment and disparities in regional development, especially in the north, remain key political and economic problems. The global financial crisis had a significant negative impact on the economy, due to a credit crunch, a decline in the real estate sector, and a fall in aluminum exports. The Government of Montenegro increased value added tax (VAT) from 17% in 2012 to 19% in 2013 and raised income tax rates from 9% to 15% for those earning over €480 a month. In 2013, the government also retrenched by freezing pensions and limiting salary increases for public enterprises and members of the parliament."

Economic growth rate
2011: 1.8%
2010: 1.1%

Labor force in agriculture
2011: 6.3%

Unemployment rate
2011: 11.5%

Public debt
2011: 45% of GDP

Income Distribution – GINI index
Ranks 139rd among 140 countries (lower rank number is less equal). Second only to Sweden.

Government

People

Living in an urban area
2010: 61%

Ethnic groups
2003 census: Montenegrin 43%, Serbian 32%, Bosniak 8%, Albanian 5%, other (Muslims, Croats, Roma (Gypsy)) 12%

Religions
2003 census: Orthodox 74.2%, Muslim 17.7%, Catholic 3.5%, other 0.6%, unspecified 3%, atheist 1%

Geography

Located in southeastern Europe, between the Adriatic Sea and Serbia. 14,026 square kilometers. Slightly smaller than Connecticut. Borders Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia. Coastline on the Adriatic Sea: Has rugged high limestone mountains and plateaus, 2,522 meters at the highest point.

President elected by popular for a five-year term and eligible for a second term. The legislature is unicameral with 81 members elected for four-year terms.

Capital: Podgorica

Recent History

With the dissolution of Yugoslavia, Montenegro federates with Serbia, first as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and, after 2003, in a looser union of Serbia and Montenegro.

May 2006: Montenegro invokes its right under the Constitutional Charter of Serbia and Montenegro to hold a referendum on independence from the state union. The vote for severing ties with Serbia exceeded 55% - the threshold set by the EU - allowing Montenegro to formally declare its independence on 3 June 2006.

In January 2007, Montenegro joined the World Bank and IMF. Montenegro is pursuing its own membership in the World Trade Organization and signed a Stabilization and Association agreement with the European Union in October 2007.

October 22, 2007: Montenegro's new constitution proclaimed..

December 2010: The European Council grants Montenegro candidate status.


SOURCES:
The World Factbook

Copyright © 2009-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.