Mr Ljajić: We have to speed up our work on new technology application

Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister of Trade, Tourism, and Telecommunications Rasim Ljajić has said today that all the countries in the region have to speed up their work on developing and applying new technologies in the economy in order to catch up with the modern world.

“We all in the region love bragging about our potentials, that we are rich in some resources, but actually, we are rich only in people”, says Mr Ljajić at the Information Technology Fair in Zenica.

Minister has stressed that the region lags behind the modern world which is in the fourth industrial revolution, which is nothing else but a technological revolution, for more than three decades.

“In some sectors we lag behind more and in some less, but when talking about the use of modern technologies in production and the level of technological development, that is 30 years of lagging behind. We cannot catch up with that if we walk slowly, but we have to run instead, in order to catch up with those who are in front of us”, Mr Ljajić has explained.

He has stated that a big share of high-technology in the export in the region is around 4.5 per cent, while the share of export of new technologies in Hungary around 19 per cent, or Czechia with 23 per cent.

For the further development of the IT sector, and generally the use of new technologies in the region, it is necessary, as he said, to develop the broadband infrastructure, more precisely, to develop fast internet which is possible through construction of optical networks and 5G technology.

“Construction of optical network and introduction of 5G technology is absolutely the priority number one if we talk about the upgrading of what we already have as a resource, which is actually people”, says Mr Ljajić.

The second precondition, according to his words, is the retraining of the staff who used to work on traditional jobs.
He pointed out that the previous experience has demonstrated that the introduction of new technologies brings to a loss of jobs in the short run, but that when observed in the long run, it increases the number of employees.

He has said that technological changes which replaced the routine jobs in the period 1999-2000 have brought to 11 million new jobs.

“That’s a chance which indicates the importance of retraining we all want to avoid, especially those who used to have jobs for an indefinite period of time, dealt with traditional jobs, but simple studying, modernisation, development and acquisition of new skills is the imperative if we think of increasing our productivity and competitiveness on the international market”, Minister underlined.

The human factor, as he has explained, will be a dominant link in the new technologies as well, adding that there are abundant examples illustrating that.

“In tourism we cannot digitalised the hospitality of people, wholeheartedness, friendliness”, he underlined, stating as an example the drop of sale in electronic books in the world, while the sale of printed books is rising, pointing out also the rising sale of vinyl records.

He has also pointed out the need that the IT sector in the future is used more in the development of domestic economy, so that the entrepreneurs, thanks to the cutting edge processes, could increase their efficiency, and thus become more competitive.