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Finance minister of the year 2007: Mladjan Dinkic

Serbia’s minister of the economy and former finance minister is uncompromising – and his approach has been crucial to the revival of his country’s economic fortunes.

Mladjan Dinkic

"You must stand firm in the face of opposition. To be a good politician you have to be able to sacrifice some popularity. In a transition economy you cannot expect to be loved by everybody"
Mladjan Dinkic

Hitting the right notes in Serbia

A keen musician, Mladjan Dinkic knows all about the value of a good composition. And as a finance minister too. Certainly in 2006 the Serbian economy was clearly in tune, boasting robust GDP growth, record foreign direct investment, high-profile privatizations, rising exports, falling inflation and a surging stock market.

In the annual prize fight for Euromoney’s finance minister of the year award, few contenders can claim to have held all three of the most important belts in the fiscal universe – central bank governor, minister of finance and minister of economy. Dinkic can. What’s more, over the course of seven years he can justifiably claim to have worn all three with distinction.

For a man who spent the best part of the 1990s in the sedate world of academia – much of it lecturing at various economic institutes in Europe and the US – following the fall of president Slobodan Milosevic in October 2000 Dinkic adapted remarkably well to the rough and tumble of Serbian politics and has proved himself to be not only a savvy operator but also someone who is not afraid of slugging it out with opponents in pursuit of his unapologetically reformist agenda.

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