Montenegro flag Montenegro: Contexto político-econômico

Contexto econômico de Montenegro

Economic Indicators

For the latest updates on the key economic responses from governments to address the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, please consult the IMF's policy tracking platform Policy Responses to COVID-19.

As the smallest country in the Balkans, Montenegro has a relatively fragile economy that is transitioning to a market system and is based on financial investments, especially in the energy and tourism sectors (private investment accounts for around one-fifth of GDP). After being severely hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, the country’s economy rebounded in 2021 when GDP grew by 13%. In 2022 Montenegro continued its positive trend, supported by a recovery of the tourism sector and by private consumption (partly influenced by the increase in wages and social transfers), with an estimated growth rate of 7.2% (IMF). According to the projections of the IMF, the economy is expected to continue to grow this year and the next, albeit at a slower pace (2.5% in 2023 and 3% in 2024) given the impact of the war in Ukraine on an import-dependent country like Montenegro. Moderate growth is due to the restriction of private consumption caused by the high level of inflation and stagnating investments.

Concerning public finances, Montenegro generally registers a budgetary deficit. At the end of 2021, the government adopted an ambitious plan (Europe Now) to boost economic recovery. This included the abolition of health contributions, an 80% increase in the minimum wage, the introduction of new social benefits and an ambitious public investment programme. The reform prompted a decrease in fiscal revenues in 2022 and a budget rebalance was adopted in September which foresaw an increase in expenditures by EUR 191 million (or 7.7%). For 2023, the budget deficit is expected to rise to 4.75% of GDP, as a result of state subsidies aimed at mitigating the effects of the crisis that affected the rise in the cost of living (S&P). The debt-to-GDP ratio decreased from 86.6% in 2021 to 74.4% in 2022 and is expected to follow a downward trend over the forecast horizon, stabilizing around 70%. To consolidate public accounts, the Minister of Finance has indicated that a tax reform will be implemented between 2022 and 2023. Planned measures include the introduction of an income tax for legal entities, as well as a progressive income tax for individuals while increasing the gross monthly tax-free salary to EUR 700. Another matter of concern is the fact that most of the public debt is denominated in USD and the country has an external trade deficit of almost one-fourth of its GDP. Therefore, Montenegro is vulnerable to a decline in external demand, and its high financing needs expose the country to potential changes in risk aversion and disruptions in global financial markets. In March 2023, the credit rating agency Standard & Poor's confirmed Montenegro's stable outlook while maintaining a B/B rating. In 2022, high global energy prices and stronger internal demand drove inflation to 12.8% (from 2.4% one year earlier). According to IMF projections, the inflation rate in 2023 will be around 9.2% before it sows to 4.5% in 2024, although uncertainty remains. One of Montenegro’s main objectives is to join the European Union: the country acquired the official status of a candidate for membership in December 2010. To advance in the accession negotiations, it should demonstrate significant progress in several domains, including the rule of law, the fight against corruption and organised crime.

Although decreasing in recent years, the unemployment rate has been historically high. Data from Monstat show that as of the third quarter of 2022, unemployment affected almost 13% of the labour force (39,000 people out of an active population of 300,700). The country maintains a large informal sector, whereas the labour force participation rate remains low. Moreover, Montenegro is one of the poorest countries in Europe: according to the latest data available by the European Commission, almost 24% of the population is at risk of poverty or social exclusion. The country’s GDP per capita was estimated at USD 26,032 in 2022 by the IMF, 52% lower than the EU average.

Main Indicators 20222023 (E)2024 (E)2025 (E)2026 (E)
GDP (billions USD)
GDP (Constant Prices, Annual % Change)
GDP per Capita (USD) 9,82011,33912,29713,08813,827
General Government Gross Debt (in % of GDP) 72.165.867.669.572.0
Inflation Rate (%) n/a8.
Current Account (billions USD) -0.81-0.76-0.87-0.94-1.04
Current Account (in % of GDP) -13.2-10.7-11.3-11.5-12.0

Source: IMF – World Economic Outlook Database, October 2021

Main Sectors of Industry

Montenegro has a labour force of 280,000 people out of its 619,000 population. Agriculture, which according to the latest data by the World Bank represents 6.5% of the GDP (roughly 60% livestock breeding and 40% cultivation) and 7% of the workforce, remains hampered by its outdated methods. Agricultural land accounts for 19% of the total land area (FAO), and the sector is dominated by small-scale family farms, with the average farm size being less than 5 hectares. In the coastal region which benefits from the Mediterranean climate, citrus and olive cultures are widespread, seasonable vegetables and tobacco can be found in the central parts, and the North benefits from the extensive sheep breeding. The main products exported are wine and beer, though the increased focus on tourism over the past decade has contributed to the waning of agriculture, increasing the country’s reliance on food imports. As Montenegro advances in the negotiations to join the EU, the country is working on the improvement of its agricultural sector as one of the EU pre-accession requirements.

Industry represents 14.8% of the country's GDP and employs 19% of the workforce. Its contribution to the economy has been declining in recent years. The steel and aluminium industry alone represents a good part of the country's exports and is expected to boost economic development. The manufacturing sector is still underdeveloped and accounts for only 4% of GDP. According to the national statistical institute, Montenegro's industrial output declined 3.3% year-on-year in 2022. In the same year, the output of the mining and manufacturing sectors increased by 8.9% and 0.3%, respectively, whereas the production of the utility sector fell by 10.8%.

The tertiary sector contributes 59.9% to the GDP and employs almost three-quarters of the workforce (73%). Tourism is the third-largest industry and consumes around one-third of total investment. It alone provides 20% of the GDP (EU Commission). The sector has been in full expansion in recent years, especially on the Adriatic Coast: every year Montenegro welcomes three times as many visitors as its total population. Unfortunately, this sector was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic but it showed signs of recovery in 2022 when the country welcomed 2.18 million tourists (of which 95.5% were foreigners – data Monstat). The country is seeking to improve its tourism infrastructure and develop its eco-tourism industry to exceed 30% of GDP by 2027. The government is trying to attract large foreign hotel chains that may provide hospitality standards similar to those in Europe. Montenegro's hotel infrastructure was underdeveloped, but with several huge infrastructure projects; the situation is beginning to change. On another hand, the county is also seeking to diversify its economy to be less dependent on tourism. Montenegro's banking sector is relatively small but growing rapidly and has undergone significant reform in recent years, with the government implementing a number of measures aimed at improving financial stability and increasing competition.

Breakdown of Economic Activity By Sector Agriculture Industry Services
Employment By Sector (in % of Total Employment) 7.4 18.8 73.8
Value Added (in % of GDP) 6.3 13.0 60.7
Value Added (Annual % Change) -0.2 -4.8 7.7

Source: World Bank, Latest Available Data. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.


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Indicator of Economic Freedom


The Economic freedom index measure ten components of economic freedom, grouped into four broad categories or pillars of economic freedom: Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption); Limited Government (fiscal freedom, government spending); Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labour freedom, monetary freedom); and Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom). Each of the freedoms within these four broad categories is individually scored on a scale of 0 to 100. A country’s overall economic freedom score is a simple average of its scores on the 10 individual freedoms.}}

World Rank:
Regional Rank:

Economic freedom in the world (interactive map)
Source: Index of Economic Freedom, Heritage Foundation


Country Risk

See the country risk analysis provided by Coface.

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Sources of General Economic Information

Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare
Statistical Office
Statistical Office of Montenegro
Central Bank
Central Bank of Montenegro
Stock Exchange
Stock Exchange of Montenegro
Economic Portals (en anglais)

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Últimas atualizações em December 2023