Bosnia and Herzegovina Country Report
A looming constitutional crisis and re-emerging ethnic tensions ahead of the October elections is threatening to upend the Dayton Accords that underpin Bosnia's statehood. Strikes and protests, with potential for violence, are likely in urban centres by groups affected by pay, pension and welfare cuts. Despite long-term limitations, the short-term economic outlook is positive. IHS Markit's economics service estimates that annual GDP growth will reach 3.4% in 2018. This is primarily due to improvements in exports and improved regional and EU demand.
Serious barriers to investment remain in Bosnia despite recent reforms. Although authorities have achieved significant success in reducing the amount of legislative overlap between the two autonomous entities that comprise Bosnia, there are still significant differences in the system. Bosnia depends on EU and IMF funds to reform its administration services. The country's inability to implement important reforms and agree on the allocation of the EU's IPA (Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance) funds risks the deprivation of such vital aid.
The Bosnian war in 1992–95 brought an influx of foreign fighters and clerics adhering to Wahhabism. Their settlement in Bosnia gradually contributed to the proselytisation of this ideology among the youth. On three separate occasions in 2010, 2011, and 2015 lone actors have conducted attacks against security personnel and the US embassy. Yet the overall capability of existing cells is very limited and unlikely to result in major attacks on Bosnian soil. Furthermore, leaders of Bosnia's constituent nations have increasingly improved their co-operation in mitigating the threat from Islamists.
The risk of inter-state war is mitigated by the presence of international security forces and the professed ambition of all regional non-EU states to pursue EU integration. There is a latent threat of armed intervention by authorities in Sarajevo against Republika Srpska (RS) should Bosnian Serb authorities make reality of their threat to attempt secession. However, this risk is further mitigated by the commercial interests of the political and business elite in RS, which are deeply intertwined with the canton of Sarajevo.
In February 2014 widespread protests and riots took place in Bosnia due to prevalent frustration and anger over high unemployment and poverty. The protests subsided relatively quickly and no organised political movement succeeded in capitalising on the widespread disaffection. However, the underlying economic and social factors that provoked the protests in February 2014 remain today. The situation is further compounded by remerging ethnic tensions ahead of the general elections in October 2018.
Vaccinations required to enter the country
No vaccinations are required to enter the country.
Hepatitis A: A vaccine is available for anyone over one year of age. The vaccine may not be effective for certain people, e.g. those born before 1945 and who lived as a child in a developing country and/or have a past history of jaundice (icterus). These people can instead get a shot of immune globulin (IG) to boost their immunity against the disease.
Hepatitis B: A vaccine is available for children at least two months old.
Diphtheria-Tetanus-Polio: A booster shot should be administered if necessary (once every ten years).
Typhoid Fever: If your travels take you to regions with poor sanitary conditions (for children two years old and up).
Rabies: For prolonged stays in an isolated region (for children from when they can walk).
Tick-Borne Encephalitis: For stays in rural zones and for hiking enthusiasts (for children over the age of one).
For Children: All standard childhood immunizations should be up-to-date. In the case of a long stay, the BCG vaccine is recommended for children over one month and the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine for children over nine months.
The climate is semi-continental in the north and Mediterranean in the south. Summer are very hot. Winters are long and harsh in the north of the country but milder in the south.
Voltage: 220 V ~ 50 Hz