The Government of the Republic of Srpska adopted today during its 127th session the Information Note on statistical data for the processing industry in the Republic of Srpska in the first quarter of 2017. Overall industrial production (which includes the ore and stone extraction, processing industry and electricity, gas and steam production and supply and air-conditioning) in January to March 2017 is by 4.5% higher when compared to the same period of 2016 whereas the processing industry recorded a 5.3% increase.
According to data of the Republic Institute for Statistics, in the reporting period the processing industry exported 15.4% more goods than in the same period in 2016 whereas the import was 9.6% higher. Thus, the export-import coverage ratio in the first three months of 2017 was 77.52% and that is by 3.89 % more when compared to 2016.
At the same time the number of people employed in the processing industry in the period of January through March 2017 has gone up by 3.9% in comparison to the same period of 2016.
The Government approved the Draft Law on Gas. The reasons for enactment of the new Law on Gas are related to the necessity to regulate the matter in more precise and more comprehensive way in order to improve and raise the standard of services and competitiveness on the internal market of natural gas. Bearing in mind the obligations that originate from the Agreement on Energy Community and the Stabilization and Association Agreement, the Law is also aligned with relevant Directives of the European Union and regulates the organization and functioning of the natural gas sector, conditions for regular, stable and quality supply of natural gas, access to the market and the way of performing the activity of transportation, distribution, storage and supply of natural gas on the territory of the Republic of Srpska.
The Government adopted the Draft Law Amending the Law on Communal Activities. The Amendments to the Law had been prepared in order to overcome certain problems which had been spotted in the course of implementation of the Law on Communal Activities and which refer to the work of certain utility companies particularly those which deal with generation and distribution of heating.
The Government adopted the verbal information of the Minister of Trade and Tourism about the situation in the 'Goods Reserves of Republic of Srpska' company. The Government passed the conclusion that all entity institutions and administrative units should review the possibility of rehiring the employees of the RS Goods Reserves Company and to coordinate those activities with the Ministry of Trade and Tourism which had been tasked to regularly report to the Government.
The Government considered the Information on the Initiative of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH to form the "National Committee for Facilitation of Trade". The Government of the Republic of Srpska does not accept the Proposal with regard to establishment of the National Committee for Facilitation of Trade which the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH submitted through its Letter No. 04-3-05-2352-6/15 of 19 May 2017 since it was not previously agreed upon with the relevant institutions of the Republic of Srpska.
The Government of the Republic of Srpska maintains that any agreement on the formation and title of the body from this Conclusion must be achieved by respecting constitutional competences of all levels of government in BiH which must reach consensus with regard to the scope of its work, institutions and its representatives which would participate in it and the way of presiding and running it. The Ministry of Economic Relations and Regional Cooperation has been tasked to inform the BiH Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations and the Office of the BiH Council of Ministers Chairman accordingly.
The Government acknowledged the Information Note on the "Water and Sanitation Project" which is being implemented in 26 municipalities across the Republic of Srpska and which primary aim is to improve the level and standards of water supply and sanitation systems in those municipalities and thus improve the quality of life if its citizens.
Over the past period 71 million BAM had been invested through this project which in the assessment of the European Investment Bank had been rated as the best managed project of this kind in the region. Out of 71 million placed so far, 44 million have been provided through the EIB loan and the remaining 27 million have been secured through the grants of the EU and the Swedish Development Agency (SIDA).
The Government accepted the Information Note on the requests for financial assistance and the Proposal of the Plan on Distribution of Funds to Association of Common Interest in 2017 and issued the consent to the Ministry of Administration and Local Self-Government for the plan of allocation of funds designated for the associations of common interest in 2017.