Balkan Business News Correspondent – 29 October 2010
Does Serbia have an “ace up its sleeve”? Serbia might need to turn to another avenue that they have to recover from the financial crisis and enter the European Union sooner- Constitutional Monarchy. Certainly the return of constitutional monarchy after almost 70 years would attract media attention and without a doubt erase Serbia’s image of war and replace with a more elegant picture. And what about the European Union? Let’s not forget that almost half of the initial participant countries in the European Union were Constitutional Monarchies. One quarter of European countries are constitutional monarchies today, out of 27 countries in the European Union, Belgium, Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom are.
Do constitutional monarchies lead to better lives? In fact 5 out of 10 richest countries in Europe are Constitutional Monarchies. According to reports, Luxembourg is the richest country in Europe. It possesses the highest GDP of $ 81,730 per capita when measured on purchasing power parity followed by Norway: Norwegians enjoy the second highest GDP per capita (PPP) in Europe having $ 55,198. The Netherlands has the 16th largest economy in the world, and ranks 10th in GDP (nominal) per capita; GDP (purchasing power parity) of Netherlands is $ 40,433. Denmark is the eight richest countries in Europe with GDP (PPP) $ 38,207 per capita and Sweden is ninth richest country of Europe having $ 37,525 GDP (Purchasing power parity) per capita.
Forbes ranked the best countries to live in 2008 and the list again shows the constitutional monarchy countries of Norway, ranked No. 1, scoring 82% while Sweden was not far behind posting a score of 81.4%. Other monarch countries in the top 10 include New Zealand (79%), Denmark (75%) and the Netherlands (74%).
Why Constitutional Monarchy? Why Tradition? Is there an advantage to have a head that has no political affiliations? Who is there to provide unity, continuity and peace? Does monarchy help with lowering corruption? The 2010 Corruption Perceptions Index shows that nearly three quarters of the 178 countries in the index score below five, on a scale from 10 (highly clean) to 0 (highly corrupt). The 12 out of the top 20 which had scores above 7.5 are monarchies and include Denmark, New Zealand, Sweden, Canada, Netherlands, Barbados, Australia, Norway, Luxembourg, Japan, Qatar and the United Kingdom. Serbia ranked 78th with a score of 3.5. These monarchies in Europe are Constitutional Monarchies provide unity, continuity and peace not political interference.
Will having Constitutional Monarchy in Serbia influence the European Union? Certainly it could not hurt. Does it mean anything that the European Union is located in a country that has a Constitutional Monarchy? In fact, there is no doubt that the image of monarchy creates money. Overseas tourists flocking to sites linked to the British royals is generating around 500 million pounds a year, reveals research from VisitBritain.
A United Nations 2009 human development report ranking 187 countries shows that 6 out of the top ten are monarchies. Norway, Australia, Canada, Netherlands, Sweden, Japan. Actually, if you look at the Annual report on the Quality of Life in different countries, you will notice that more than half of the countries in the first 10 are Monarchies (UK, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, Belgium, etc.).So believe it or not, life could actually better under Constitutional Monarchies.
“A symbol is a concretization. Every human being, even the most depraved of the moderns, needs something tangible, something to point to and say to themselves and others: "This is what I believe," or "this is what I am.”
So what’s the negative? Will Serbia accept more charitable contributions, more possibilities to enter the European Union, an elegant image, gracious hosts, business people from all over the world gracing the steps of the Palaces, and promotion of Serbia throughout the world? Many Serbs support this notion, and other Serbs relish on all the benefits it brings. “There will be only good benefits, and I don’t see that there will be any more strain on the country.” said Jelena Tasic a student in Belgrade.
But would Crown Prince Alexander continue to commit to dedicating his life to Serbia with the endless hours of work associated? The answer is yes; even with all of this he'd be happy to take the throne. A typical day for the Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine range from the charitable to investor promotion to international public relations for Serbia. Crown Prince Alexander is bringing investors, educational scholarships, and important VIP’s from all over the world each and every month. Crown Princess Katherine has saved many lives, provided millions in aid and support. The couple continually travels throughout the world meeting heads of states, top business people and the media for their quest to help Serbia and the Serbian people. All this attributes to tens of millions a year in support for Serbia. There is even a Kingdom of Serbia association that has reared up recently in the country with tens of thousands of members.
The bottom line is that Kingdom of Serbia seems to make good business sense.