Bosnia and Herzegovina: Economy#

Bosnia has a transitional economy with limited market reforms. The economy relies heavily on the export of metals, energy, textiles, and furniture as well as on remittances and foreign aid. A highly decentralized government hampers economic policy coordination and reform, while excessive bureaucracy and a segmented market discourage foreign investment. Foreign banks, primarily from Austria and Italy, now control most of the banking sector. The konvertibilna marka (convertible mark or BAM) - the national currency introduced in 1998 - is pegged to the euro, and confidence in the currency and the banking sector has remained stable.

Interethnic warfare in Bosnia and Herzegovina caused production to plummet by 80% from 1992 to 1995 and unemployment to soar, but the economy made progress until 2008, when the global economic crisis caused a downturn. Bosnia and Herzegovina became a full member of the Central European Free Trade Agreement in September 2007.

Bosnia's private sector is growing slowly, but foreign investment has dropped sharply since 2007. Government spending - including transfer payments - remains high, at roughly 40% of GDP, because of redundant government offices at the national, sub-national, and municipal level. High unemployment remains the most serious macroeconomic problem. Successful implementation of a value-added tax in 2006 provided a steady source of revenue for the government and helped rein in gray-market activity. National-level statistics have also improved over time but a large share of economic activity remains unofficial and unrecorded.

Bosnia and Herzegovina's top economic priorities are: acceleration of integration into the EU; strengthening the fiscal system; public administration reform; World Trade Organization membership; and securing economic growth by fostering a dynamic, competitive private sector.

Economic Facts#

GDP (purchasing power parity)$42.53 billion (2016 est.)
$41.29 billion (2015 est.)
$40.03 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$16.53 billion (2015 est.)
GDP - real growth rate3% (2016 est.)
3.2% (2015 est.)
1.1% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$11,000 (2016 est.)
$10,700 (2015 est.)
$10,300 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
Gross national saving12% of GDP (2016 est.)
10.5% of GDP (2015 est.)
10.3% of GDP (2014 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 80.9%
government consumption: 21.5%
investment in fixed capital: 18.6%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 32.8%
imports of goods and services: -55.1% (2016 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of originagriculture: 7.8%
industry: 26.8%
services: 65.4% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productswheat, corn, fruits, vegetables; livestock
Industriessteel, coal, iron ore, lead, zinc, manganese, bauxite, aluminum, motor vehicle assembly, textiles, tobacco products, wooden furniture, ammunition, domestic appliances, oil refining
Industrial production growth rate4% (2016 est.)
Labor force1.48 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 19%
industry: 30%
services: 51% (2013)
Unemployment rate43.2% (2015 est.)
43.2% (2015 est.)
note: official rate; actual rate is lower as many technically unemployed persons work in the gray economy
Population below poverty line17.2% (2011 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.7%
highest 10%: 27.3% (2007)
Distribution of family income - Gini index36.2 (2007)
Budgetrevenues: $7.681 billion
expenditures: $7.975 billion (2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues46.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-1.8% of GDP (2016 est.)
Public debt46.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
46.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
note: data cover general government debt and include debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as int
Fiscal yearcalendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices)-0.8% (2016 est.)
-1% (2015 est.)
Commercial bank prime lending rate5% (31 December 2016 est.)
5.79% (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$5.008 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$4.554 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of broad money$9.223 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$10.72 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$9.367 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$9.389 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
Current account balance-$847 million (2016 est.)
-$901 million (2015 est.)
Exports$3.93 billion (2016 est.)
$3.95 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditiesmetals, clothing, wood products
Exports - partnersSlovenia 16.5%, Italy 15.9%, Germany 12.1%, Croatia 11.5%, Austria 11.1%, Turkey 5.2% (2015)
Imports$7.765 billion (2016 est.)
$8.173 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiesmachinery and equipment, chemicals, fuels, foodstuffs
Imports - partnersCroatia 19.3%, Germany 13.9%, Slovenia 13.8%, Italy 10.9%, Austria 5.7%, Hungary 5.2%, Turkey 4.5% (2015)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$4.8 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$4.791 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Debt - external$9.768 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$9.597 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$7.92 billion (2014 est.)
$7.721 billion (2013 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$0 (2014)
Exchange rateskonvertibilna markas (BAM) per US dollar -
1.806 (2016 est.)
1.7626 (2015 est.)
1.7626 (2014 est.)
1.4718 (2013 est.)
1.52 (2012 est.)