Serbia creates » Srbija stvara | 21 ANA I L I Ć, SEN I OR ADV I SOR TO T HE SE R B I AN PR I ME M I N I ST E R We present a modern, dynamic and creative Serbia to theworld Renowned British magazine The Economist proclaimed “an unexpected technological boom in Serbia”, while the BBC declared Belgrade one of the world's five most creative cities American newspaper The New York Post considers Belgrade a paradise for digital nomads andNewYorkersworking remotely. How did this turnaround come about? According to Ana Ilić, senior advisor to the Serbian Prime Minister for the creative industries and tourism, it is a result of the development of the technological and creative industries in Serbia, as well as a proactive engagement in the digital revolution. “The impressive results of the development of the creative industries in Serbia over the last six years – with a GDP share of as much as 7.4%, sector growth of 60 per cent, total export growth of 51 per cent and constant growth in the number of employees, most of whom are highly educated, young and, in more than 45 per cent of cases, women – serve as proof of Serbia‘s huge progress and potential in this area, but also as an indicator that the Prime Minister of the Republic of Serbia was correct in deciding to set the development of the creative industries and digitalisation as a strategic goal of her Government. That‘s also why the Serbia Creates national platform was established, as an interdepartmental umbrella body that‘s responsible for promoting Serbia internationally, and doing so precisely through the potential that exists in the field of the creative industries, innovations and the knowledge-based economy. This platform acts as a national brand that asserts the values of the modern Serbia - creativity, innovation, knowhow and talent in all areas of the economy and society.” We have left behind quite a difficult and challenging year. To what extant has the pandemic impacted on the development of this sector? “The effects of the pandemic caused a slight slowdown in the creative sector and, as expected, didn‘t hit all activities equally. However, the total values realised still remain above the periodprior to the crisis andmore than three per cent growth was achieved. This raises hope in a bright and creative future for Serbia, especially during a year when the United Nations is commemorating the Year of Creative Economies globally.” The Serbia Creates Platform has, through numerous projects, contributed to the development of the creative industries in Serbia. What‘s planned next? “Among themultitude of projects that we‘re working on, I would certainly single out preparations for Serbia‘s appearance at the upcoming Dubai Expo 2020, as well as the rebranding of Serbia‘s tourist offer, which we are working on in cooperation with the Ministry of Tourism and the National TourismOrganisation of Serbia. These are opportunities and projects that we are using to attempt to deal proactively with the negative effects of the pandemic and to extract the best for Serbia. The idea is to be prepared for the opening up of countries and to offer a modern, dynamic and inspiring Serbia that‘s packed with creative and talented people; a country where talented people stay and return to, and where talented people from all over the world come to live and work.The idea is to finally present ourselves in the proper light.” The impressive results in the development of the creative industries in Serbia over the last six years serve as proof of Serbia's huge progress and potential in this area