Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and the leader of Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) Aleksandar Vucic toasts with champagne at the party headquarters in Belgrade March 16, 2014.
Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic is pursuing an IMF loan. Reuters

Serbia is talking to the International Monetary Fund about a three precautionary loan deal but dates and figures have not been set, finance minister Lazar Krstic said on Thursday.

"We are in the process of discussions with the IMF and we will go ahead as planned. We are looking for a standby precautionary loan," Krstic told Reuters at a business forum in Switzerland.

Serbia is hoping to agree a deal for a sum within twice its IMF quota, suggesting a figure in the region of $1.5bn.

"Once we have refined the policies to the required level, I think that's the point when we will be able to begin engaging the IMF again to continue the conversation," Krstic said.

The country's new Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said last month that he expects the country to sign a deal by July.

In order to strike a deal, the EU-applicant country will need to trim down its surging budget deficit and cap public debt which has risen to 63% of GDP.

"We are not poor who are seeking charity, we need support for true reforms," he said last month.

Vucic has promised to cut the country's bloated public sector, reform the state's pensions system and reduce subsidies to state companies.

Speaking to IBTimes UK last October, Vucic pledged tough and meaningful reform of the country's economy.

"We are experts in corruption and we're experts in extortion but this is now times gone past," he said.

"We are putting an end to public-owned companies acting as if they are a state within a state and awarding themselves salaries and bonuses while still being subsidised by the government."

"We have 25% unemployment and we have problems with our budget deficit. But how do you think we are going to cut this by 2% when we are wasting money elsewhere? Why, because we're hypocrites," Vucic told IBTimes UK in October.

Investors see the IMF deal as an important step that could speed up economic reform in the Balkan country, which opened talks over EU accession in January this year.