At the initiative of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce (SCC) and the industry sector, the Serbian Government adopted a Regulation on the criteria for determining activities that affect the environment according to the amount of pollution, which for the first time promotes the model "pay how much pollution" in Serbia, which means that the calculation compensation is made according to the actual amount of polluted emissions, and not as a percentage of realized revenues. It is estimated that savings for the economy will amount to about two billion dinars annually.
"This regulation is useful both for companies, and for citizens and the community. Introduces the most important principles for company business, predictability, waste reduction, care for the local community. Everyone gets the regulation because the money will be centralized and used for the quality of life in the local community. Companies and future investors will be able to accurately calculate their financial commitment and invest more in green technologies, "said Sinisa Mitrovic, head of the Circular Economy Service of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce.
The high fees for the protection and improvement of the environment, which were prescribed by local governments in their municipality, under the Law on Fees for the Use of Public Goods, was one of the key problems encountered by business entities. Environmental Protection and Enhancement Fees were calculated at the rate of up to 0.4% of annual revenues, which represented a significant expense in the company's operations.
In order to solve this problem, the Chamber was addressed by members from the industry sector, with the aim of finding a new model for calculating an adequate amount of compensation. An internal team formed on the initiative of the SCC proposed that the calculation of compensation be based exclusively on the actual amount of polluted pollution, in accordance with the "polluter pays" principle, in order to reduce the harmful effects on the environment and to send the initiative to the Ministry of Environmental Protection.
At its session on April 18, 2019, the Government of Serbia adopted the Decree on the criteria for determining activities that affect the environment according to the amount of pollution, ie the degree of negative impact on the environment caused by activities, fees, conditions for exemption from payment of compensation or its reduction, as well as criteria that are of importance for the environmental impact of natural persons, in which all the key requirements contained in the initiative of the SCC are respected.
Businessmen expect that this constructive and timely solution will improve the implementation of the Law on Fees for the Use of Public Goods, and the operations of companies will be more successful and more competitive.