According to EUROSTAT data, in 2010 the welfare of Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens was the second-lowest among all EU member states and candidate/potential candidate countries.
On 13 December 2011 EUROSTAT published the second revision of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita and Actual Individual Consumption (AIC) for the EU member states, as well as for candidate and potential candidate countries. These indicators are useful for comparison of real welfare levels across countries, as Purchasing Power Standard excludes price differences between the countries. According to the published data, on average, a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina produces less then one third of goods and services compared to the EU average, and he/she consumes about 37% of goods and services of that consumed by an average EU citizen. On average, all Western Balkans countries citizens with exception of Croatia produce less than Bulgarian and Romanian citizens – however, an average citizen of Serbia and Montenegro consumes more than an average Bulgarian citizen.
The European Union, recognizing that this is an important issue, and in an attempt to assist BiH to overcome this large discrepancy in welfare, together with the BiH authorities, has designed support that specifically aims at improvement in welfare levels. Almost one third of the 2011 – 2013 assistance that will be channelled through the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) is allocated to economic and social development support programmes to contribute to economic growth and social inclusion of BiH citizens, and to bring the country closer to becoming a functioning market economy, able to cope with competitive pressure and market forces of the single European market.
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