Gastarbeiting

July 25, 2006 at 11:52 pm 3 comments

Unemployment in Serbia is somewhere around 30%. Of course, many people work without paying taxes, yet most complain there is no work. I won’t try to persuade anyone that any work is better than no work, but still…

Recently, I visited Rudnik, a mountain in central Serbia, which is rich in natural resources. Few years before the World War II, a German miner started a business of digging the stuff out and after the war all the resources were nationalized. Although there are many mines around, the mountain is still rather beautiful.

As pretty as the nature is, some other things simply took me out of my time. For example, a store in the village uses a Slovenian scale for measuring vegetables, fruits and other purchases. It’s surprising that the scale is not a product of the new Slovenian dominance in Serbia (the country is one of the biggest investors recently), but rather a 1979 one.

There is virtually no tourism on the mountain, except for a small motel or two, and perhaps a thousand souls are living there. As it is a mountain, it can’t be a farming place, and except for a second league football team (Rudar), there is no healthy economy, or anything else for that matter, going on for them.

Still, there are mines. The problem is, no miners. I have no idea how the inhabitants of the mountain make their ends meet, but local mine authorities were forced to employ workers from Macedonia, after unsuccessfully trying to advertise job openings in Serbia. The employer pays their rent, expenses, salary and frequent trips back home.

Is it really possible that Serbs are so much better off than Macedonians to be able to afford to be picky about their jobs?

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Entry filed under: Economy, Serbia.

Ignorance Amoebian Script

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Anonymous  |  July 29, 2006 at 10:13 pm

    Perhaps the Serbs there have relatives abroad who send them money.

    Reply
  • 2. Cp6uja  |  August 7, 2006 at 12:29 pm

    wait a minute, you – a foreign parasite – are crying about serbian nonworkers??? is this serious??? who´s paying you for your nonsense??? some kind of so-called ngo???

    Reply
  • 3. Global Voices Online » Serbia: Macedonian Gastarbeiters  |  September 9, 2008 at 11:12 pm

    […] of the Serbian Mess writes about Macedonian miners working at Serbian mines. Posted by Veronica Khokhlova  Print […]

    Reply

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