Starting tomorrow, all freelancers in Serbia will have their own place on the Internet. Using a new web portal, freelancers will be able to quickly and simply report the income they earned through freelance work under a more favorable tax treatment, settle their obligations and exercise their right to pension and health insurance. During July, freelancers in Serbia need to submit a tax return for the first two quarters of this year.
The portal contains a number of useful tools for all existing and potential freelancers - a self-assessment test on whether they meet the requirements to be a freelancer, a tax liability calculator that can help freelancers choose one of the two options for taxation, as well as a guide providing answers to the most important questions. Estimates are that the portal could initially be used by up to 100,000 freelancers who earn income by working for other individuals in Serbia or for individuals and legal entities abroad.
The new self-taxation model for freelancers is the result of year-long activities and negotiations by the Ministry of Finance, the Tax Administration, the Prime Minister’s Office, as well as representatives of freelancer associations, while the portal was developed under the auspices of the StarTech investment promotion project supported by Philip Morris company and implemented by NALED.
- Cooperation with freelancers within working groups was of key importance on the way to finding the best solution for regulating the rights and obligations of freelancers in Serbia, which was brought about by this portal. This solution is suitable for everyone, whether they occasionally do some work or it is their daily routine. We will remain available, if any additional consultation and clarification is needed - said Slavica Savičić, State Secretary in the Ministry of Finance.
The director of the IT and entrepreneurship team in the Prime Minister’s Office, Nenad Paunović, announced that according to earlier research, Belgrade was among the top 10 destinations for digital nomads, and that he believes that the new model of taxation of freelancers will encourage them to come even more.
- Our goal, which we have now reached, is that you can comfortably do business all over the world from Serbia. The Freelancer portal brings a precise solution for everything, because we insisted that taxes be paid in as few clicks as possible. The secret of success of the new platform is the involvement of all interested actors - concluded Paunović.
Freelancers will enter the total amount of income generated during the quarter on the new portal when submitting their tax return, mark whether they are health insured on some other basis, and finally choose one of the two self-taxation models. After submitting the application, they will receive a payment slip with a QR code for quick payment. On the portal, they will be able to keep records of all payments and, at the end of the quarter, drag all payments into the tax return with one click.
Ivan Miletić, Corporate Affairs Director for Southeastern Europe in Philip Morris, reminded that at the initiative of StarTech, the extension of the tax increase limit was adopted for lump sum taxpayers, while freelancers were given the opportunity to pay the lowest amount of contributions in order to have health insurance.
- We hope to continue the series of good reforms and as the first next step we nominate the introduction of a unified payment of taxes for entrepreneurs, which would not only save their time and money, but also reduce the room for mistakes, which has been a frequent case so far. We will continue in this direction, and this is an ideal opportunity to reveal to you that we are preparing another B2B portal that will aim to connect small and large businesses according to the principle of supply and demand - announced Miletić.
NALED Executive Director Violeta Jovanović, explained that the work on the Freelancer portal has not been completed and that its improvement will continue.
- Further steps are planned to make this reform as comprehensive as possible, and the portal more advanced and useful. What awaits us in the future are trainings for public servants and freelancers, development of untimely tax returns, generation and filling of the database of questions and answers through the contact form, monitoring and further reporting on the use of the portal, and what we propose to the institutions is to link the Freelancers portal with the website of the Central registry of the mandatory social security and the development of the English version of the portal, since non-residents can also be freelancers - said Jovanović.
The event brought together all interested associations of freelancers and individuals who hire them, as well as institutions that participated in the reform - the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Finance, the Tax Administration, the Ministry of Labor, Employment, Veterans and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Health, CROSO and funds social insurance.
The Freelancer portal will be available from July 1 at the address frilenseri.purs.gov.rs.
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