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SYNERGY - QUARTERLY MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
 

SYNERGY - QUARTERLY MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

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Synergy is NALED’s magazine, published quarterly and involving information about the activities of NALED, its members and partners, as well as expert analyses and reports, interviews, service ...

Synergy is NALED’s magazine, published quarterly and involving information about the activities of NALED, its members and partners, as well as expert analyses and reports, interviews, service information (open calls for project funding, paid or subsidized trainings and seminars for professional development in the country and abroad) and specific solutions for the issues in the field of regulatory reform, investment promotion and local administration. All content is consistent with NALED values – competence, innovation, independence, fairness and integrity.

As a free copy, the magazine is distributed via direct mail to more than 1,500 decision-makers, including representatives of state and local institutions, international organizations and donors, diplomatic corps, businesses, business associations and chambers, professional associations and the media.

In accordance with its name, Synergy connects and intersects the views of all three sectors of the society and prominent domestic and foreign economic analysts. In addition to informative and educational content, Synergy pages are also open for advertising and promotion of ideas, products and services of NALED members, partners and associates, as well as other representatives of private, public and civil sector and the media supporting and encouraging the economic growth of Serbia.

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    SYNERGY - QUARTERLY MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SYNERGY - QUARTERLY MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Document Transcript

    • Leaders of reforms Israel and Serbia Sir Paul Judge 6 The Alliance Assembly elected the new Managing Board consisting of nine members on 18th April Ambassador Yossef Levy: You have a lot of advantages but also a complicated bureaucracy Chairman of British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce: British investors are intere- sted more than ever page News fROm NaleD NO. 1 | JUNe 2013 IN FOCUS paRTNeRs fOR sUCCess NaleD INTeRvIew Local economic development in Serbia36 17page page QUARTERLY MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT fRee COpY www.NaleD-seRbIa.ORg ISSN2334-8593 Regulatory Index of Serbia hOw we gRaDe whaT The gOveRNmeNT Is DOINg 3D Interview we all shaRe The same pROblems Municipality of Golubac CITY-fORTRess ON The DaNUbe
    • 2 Synergy
    • 3june 2013 | PUBLISHER National Alliance for Local Economic Development (NALED) 30/VII Makedonska street, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia t: +381 11 33 73 063, f: +381 11 33 73 061, e: naled@naled-serbia.org www.naled-serbia.org DIRECTOR Violeta Jovanović violeta_jovanovic@naled-serbia.org EDITOR IN-CHIEF Milica Stefanović milica_stefanovic@naled-serbia.org EXECUTIVE EDITOR Ivan Radak ivan_radak@naled-serbia.org DESIGN AND PRE-PRESS Dizajn biro Beograd CONTRIBUTORS Jelena Bojović, Tom Thorogood, Dušan Vasiljević, Aleksandra Galić, Milica Mandić, Jovana Ćirić ADVERTISING Dubravka Tomić dubravka_tomic@naled-serbia.org PRINT Cicero CIRCULATION 300 FRONT PAGE Titan cement factory Kosjerić Dear friends of NALED and local economic development. We are pleased to present the first issue of our new magazine Synergy. From now on, every three months the magazine will bring you interesting stories, expert analyses and comments, reports and service information in the field of regulatory reform, investment promotion and local administration. The topic of the first issue concerns all of us – citizens, businesses and municipalities. It is in everyone’s interest, but still it is truly comprehended and supported only by the best. When a new bridge or road surprises us, when our neighborhood, park or street shines in new light, when a factory opens up and brings new jobs, when a company we work in expands its operations, when businesses take care of their local community and local community of their businesses, when regulations are clear and the citizens are happy... All of this is life at its best. And it’s all local economic development, our topic. ImpRessUm wORD fROm The eDITOR inTRoDUCToRY 5 Vladan Atanasijević, President of NALED MB neWs 6 News from NALED 10 Service info in sYneRGY 12 Jelena Bojović, NALED: Local economic development in Serbia 14 Tom Thorogood, UNDP: Direction of local development 16 Test: How much do you really know about LED? inTeRVieW WiTH... 17 Sir Paul Judge, Chairman of British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce 20 Ramon Weidinger, General Manager of Coca-Cola Hellenic Serbia 22 3D interview: Vršac, Bambi and Group 484 BUsinesses 24 Visiting Imlek 26 Success story: Titan cement factory Kosjerić LeGisLaTion 28 Report on regulatory reform 30 Ask WHEN: Payment of wage taxes and contributions LoCaL GoVeRnmenT 32 Meet the municipality of Golubac paRTneRs FoR sUCCess 34 Presenting the country: Israel 37 Yossef Levy, Ambassador of Israel to Serbia 38 Presenting the project: Regulatory Index of Serbia 39 NALED members Milica Stefanović, Editor in chief 8 32 20 Contents The contents of this publication may be used only when quoting the source of information “SYNERGY – NALED’s Quarterly Magazine” If you wish to receive the printed edition of the SYNERGY magazine please subs- cribe at www.naled-serbia.org/magazine CIP - Каталогизација у публикацији Народна библиотека Србије, Београд 33 SYNERGY : quarterly Magazine of National Alliance for Local Economic Development / editor in chief Milica Stefanović. - 2013, no. 1 (june)- . - Belgrade (30/VII Makedonska street) : National Alliance for Local Economic Development (NALED), 2013- ([Belgrade] : Cicero). - 27 cm Tromesečno. - Ima izdanje na drugom jeziku: Sinergija = ISSN 2334-8402 ISSN 2334-8593 COBISS.SR-ID 199587084
    • LEADERS OF THE NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Belgrade Wholesale Market, Autoput bb, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia 011 715 84 80, info@veletrznica.co.rs www.veletrznica.co.rs think BIG invest in WHOLESALE MARKET Fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, flowers – new system of trade Premium location and market – 18 ha next to highway and airport Up to 12% return on investment, 50% lower lease price be The fIRsT IN seRbIa aND The RegION!
    • 5june 2013 | No matter what we do, we all live and work in a certain place. And we all want that place – municipality to provide us with adequate conditions for doing business and high quality of life. Unfortu- nately, not all municipalities have favorable geographic location, natural resources, nor they were lucky enough to serve as admini- strative center of certain regions in Serbia, and have revenues from fees and taxes filling-up the local budget on their own... But for this reason, all local governments should be aware of and find answers to the following questions: What are the specific characteristics and comparative advantages of our municipality? What can we do to improve the quality of life and doing business in our community? How can we establish a local eco- nomic development plan and program? How can we reach new investments and jobs? One of NALED roles is to use the certificati- on process in assisting local governments to understand better their position and the ways for improving it, recognize their uniqueness and build their future upon this foundation, improve their business environment in the best interest of their citizens and businesses. This role is not always pleasant and sometimes faces lack of understanding, both on the natio- nal and the local level. The latest example was the NALED analysis on para-fiscal charges, whose sole purpose was to ease the businesses from unnecessary fees in order for them to grow and develop, bringing new jobs and tax revenues to local governments. In this and all other cases, NALED does not take the stand for individual interests of one group or ano- ther. NALED is on the side of local economic development in Serbia, which can be stimu- lated only if businesses, municipalities and citizens work together and respect each other in order to reach compromise and sustainable solutions, leading to long-term prosperity. Our goal is to understand the real situation when it comes to doing business in Serbia, and offer solutions for improving it. We are trying to make things better not just to look good. This is the only way forward. INTRODUCTORY Vladan Atanasijević, President of NALED MB
    • 6 Synergy news New Managing Board To future battles for better business environ- ment and local economic development, NALED will go armed with new forces. On April 18 in the Ministry of Finance and Economy, the Alliance held its Assembly electing the new Managing Board, which will as of this year involve nine members – 5 from companies, 3 from local governments and one from the NGO sector. In the following two years, NALED will be led by Vladan Atanasijević, Director of Asseco SEE, as the President of MB, Ramon Weidinger, General Manager of Coca-Cola Hellenic, Bratislav Gašić, Mayor of Kruševac and Ana Brnabić, Executive Director of Pexim foundation, as Vice-Presidents. The other mem- bers will be: Mihailo Janković, CEO of Knjaz Miloš, Miroslav Miletić, General Manager of Bambi, Ernst Bode, General Manager of Messer Tehnogas, Nemanja Delić, Mayor of Sombor, Vladan Vasić, Mayor of Pirot. The ceremony of announcing the new members of MB gathered around prominent guests - Minister of Finance and Economy Mlađan Dinkić, Head of EU Delegation to Serbia Vincent Degert, USAID Mission Director in Serbia Susan Fritz and Secretary for Economic Cooperation of the Embassy of Germany, Christophe Eichen. The Assembly also appointed the new Supervisory Board, with members from the previous term - Dragan Đuričin, President of Deloitte, Borislav Miljanović, CEO of Represent Communications and Vladimir Milovanović, General Manager of Energoprojekt holding, and new members - Svetlana Tolmacheva, President of Executive Board of ProCredit bank and Mayor of Niš Zoran Perišić. NALED Executive Director Violeta Jovanović awarded plaques of gratitude to members of previous MB for their contribution to Alliance development over the previous years – Vladimir Čupić, Toplica Spasojević and Vladan Maksić. The same recognitions were earned by Ivana Veselinović and Neven Marinović. Two proposals to amend the Labor Law One of the biggest reforms we can certainly expect in 2013 is the amendments to the Labor Law. Since the current regulation has not brought about the expected effects but, on the contrary, it even contributed to reduction of employment in Serbia, NALED became actively engaged in proposing the necessary reforms. Our association is a member of a working group considering the changes that need to be made. In this sense, NALED prepared two expert analyses with proposals for changing the severance pay system and definite-period employment. Regarding the severance pay, we propose to limit the payments only to the period of time spent with the current company that declared an employee redundant, and not for all the years of service. The second proposal is to limit the definite-period emplo- yment to a maximum of 36 months and to change the tax policy in a way that additionally destimulates definite-period employment. The obstacles set by the current Labor Law have caused several problems: employers are constantly extending the definite-period emplo- yment contract, without even considering hiring experienced workers from the National Employment Service records, fearing that they would have to pay high severance pays if these workers become redundant. Thus, a large number of citizens are either in a challen-ging and uncertain employment position or they cannot even find a job, so they find themselves in the grey zone, with little rights. Nova Varoš, Kula and Odžaci pass for a Certificate In the first quarter of 2013, another three local governments obtained the business-friendly status – Nova Varoš, Odžaci and Kula. This way the number of certified municipalities went up to 27, and some of them have already become candidates for recertification – such as Loznica or Kragujevac, which were the first ones to successfully pass this repeated test! Nova Varoš achieved a very high result in fulfilling the required criteria – 92.1%. In Kula, this result was 83.9%, and 84.6% in Odžaci. The success of these three local governments which are not located on an important corridor or in the proximity of large cities, should serve as a best practice example for other similar municipalities, showing they should work on improving the business environment and administrative procedures regardless of their geographic location. The results in attracting investments so far show that the location of a municipality is not crucial for the decision. It’s the commitment and hard work of municipal management, the efficiency of local administration and the proactive search for investors that make a difference.
    • 7june 2013 | How we grade what the Government is doing From now on, no Government of Serbia will be left alone to interpret its performance in developing a better business environment; there is a new eye watching on them – the Regulatory Index of Serbia (RIS), a new tool for impartial assessment of the Government’s work, developed by NALED and USAID Business Enabling Project. It was presented in January at a press co- nference in Danas Conference Center. According to RIS, the work of both governments in 2012 earned only 31.7 points out of 100. In order to re-confirm the validity of RIS „on the ground”, NALED in cooperation with Ipsos Strategic Marketing performs a quarterly survey among the businesses throughout Serbia regarding their views on regulatory environment. The correlation between business opinions and RIS results is very high (85%), showing we have achieved one of the organization’s most important tasks – that is to ensure the efficient control of what the executive authorities are doing. According to the survey, businesses think that the Government is not improving in the first quarter of this year since most of the ministers received lower grades or kept the same level. Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić (average grade 4.3) and Minister Mlađan Dinkić (average grade 3) were the only ones to receive better ratings for responsibility in their work. PPP as the key of sustainable development In the previous two decades, the European Union invested more than EUR 250 billion into infrastructure and development of utility services through public- private partnerships, proving this is the right and proper way to raise the co- mpetitiveness and employment on the local level and ensure adequate living and working conditions for the citizens and businesses. Serbia finally received a mo- dern Law on PPP in 2011 providing the right framework for developing projects in this field. However, the interest among local governments is still modest. For this reason, in cooperation with USAID Sustainable Local Development Project, NALED initiated the project „Public-private partnerships – key of sustainable development” involving 32 local governments. The project aims to motivate local administration in identifying the projects they could realize through PPP and participate at the competition for the best PPP idea. The best eight municipali- ties will receive technical assistance from NALED to establish local teams for realization of PPPs and develop action plans for project implementation. In No- vember, NALED and USAID will organize an investors’ conference providing the opportunity for local governments to connect with interested private partners. News from NALED The study on para-fiscal charges prepared last year by NALED made a significant impact reducing the burden to businesses seen in numerous fees and charges. Apart from accepting our recommendations and eliminating 138 para-fiscal charges and fees shortly upon its establishment, the Government of Serbia obliged at the same time to regulate the issue of fees through a single law. In the first quarter, the Draft Law on Fees for Use of Public Goods was published. As a follow up, in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance and Economy and USAID Business Enabling Project, NALED organized the first round table within the public discussion on this Draft Law in Belgrade Hyatt Hotel. Representa- tives of companies, municipalities and NGOs from NALED membership had the opportunity to engage in an open dialogue with Milica Bisić, Advisor at the Ministry of Finance and Economy, in order to identify the challenging aspects of the Draft Law and to offer alternative solutions. After the discussion, all co- mments and suggestions were submitted to the Ministry in writing. NALED will continue to monitor the process of fur- ther content development of the Law and influence the adoption of proposals that will benefit local economic development. All fees in one place
    • 8 Synergy Electronic tax returns On the working luncheon with NALED members, the Director of Tax Administra- tion Ivan Simič announced that starting from July 1st 2014 all taxpayers will be obliged to submit tax reports in electronic form. In his words, since the beginning of this year, there have been around 110,000 tax returns, out of which only 2.7% were submitted electroni- cally – all the rest was done via the counter. Introduction of the digital certificate would significantly simplify tax reporting procedure, so Simič appealed to all businesses to start using this type of signatures, if they hadn’t already started – especially since the law does not require the use of stamps anymore. Simič stressed that transition from counters to electronic tax reporting would not lead to less jobs in Tax Administration offices across Serbia. Finally, he announced about NALED Grey Book recommendation to be adopted early next year – to have wage taxes and con- tributions paid to one account, which would bring much relief to the business community. Next investment destination: Serbia For the third year in a row, Belgrade Airport has been promoting the best from Serbia – business friendly cities and munici- palities. This unique investment promotion campaign was initiated by NALED and Nikola Tesla Airport back in 2010 and so far, 23 local governments received the opportunity to present their business po- tentials in this spot, in front of more than 6 million passengers! In February 2013, the third campaign cycle was launched, under the title „Next investment destinati- on: Serbia“. For a one-year period, seven certified cities and municipalities – Paraćin, Užice, Kruševac, Vršac, Zrenjanin, Novi Sad and Sombor – will promote food, chemical, metal-processing, construction and phar- maceutical industries, with the support of seven large companies operating with great success on the local level – Holcim, Copper Mill Sevojno (East Point), Henkel, Fresenius Medical Care, Dijamant, United Brewe- ries of Serbia (Heineken) and Somboled (Lactalis). At the launching of the campai- gn, Minister of Regional Development and Local Government Verica Kalanović and the Provincial Secretary for Interregional Cooperation Branislav Bugarski signed Me- morandums of Understanding with NALED on further promotion of business-friendly municipalities. Even though our country has attracted a significant amount of investments since the democratic changes in 2000, no comprehensive record of investments has been made so far by the state institutions. The methodology of keeping investment records often varies from one institution to another. We decided to do the pioneer work – after collecting and classifying extensive data rece- ived from various sources, the first database of foreign investments was created and published on NALED website. For the start, the database contains information about the 200 most important international companies that invested almost EUR 16 billion into our country over the previous 13 years. The largest part of investments was seen in automotive industry (21), food industry (19), banking and insurance (15) and construction industry (14). Among the top 10 cities and municipalities by the number of investments, there are seven holders of NALED business friendly certificate (Inđija, Novi Sad, Subotica, Stara Pazova, Niš, Zrenjanin and Pirot). Since it was published in February, the database has attracted much public attention and NALED updates it regularly with new information on foreign investments. The first database of foreign investments news News from NALED
    • 9june 2013 | ConStruCtion Work(S)! Overview of most important foreign investments in 2013 According to the National Bank of Serbia, during the 1st quarter of 2013 net flow of foreign direct investments (FDI) in our country rea- ched EUR 155.3 mil. Most investments arrived in the field of financial services – 29.5%, wholesale – 27.1%, beverage production – 14.6% and construction – 12.9%. Holcim Serbia opened a concrete factory in Dobanovci. Investment value: EUR 2 mil Danish Grundfos opened a factory in Inđija. Investment value: EUR 50 mil Sloboda launched a new production facility for artillery ammunition in Čačak. Investment value: EUR 5.5 mil Company Continental Wind Partners CWP obtained the permit for constructing the first wind farm in the municipality of Kovin. Investment value: EUR 300 mil Fresenius Medical Care launched its third production line of medical equipment in Vršac, providing new jobs for 112 people Thanks to company U.A. Aribolt which opened a new women’s stockings production facility in Kruševac, new jobs were created for 100 workers. Investment value: more than EUR 5 mil Slovenian company Gorenje opened a new air-conditioning systems factory in Valjevo. Investment value: more than EUR 21 mil Gorenje and Panasonic are jointly opening a company for producing cooling devices in Zaječar. Investment value: EUR 70 mil New factory of confectionery company Benlian foods in Niš brought jobs for 100 workers Italian company for synthetic fiber production - Fulgar invested EUR 2 mil into construction of a new production hall to increase the existing capacities by 40% and employ 100 workers Construction material producer Domino opened its sales center in Kikinda. Investment value: EUR 800.000 Expected investments in 2013 Company Messer Tehnogas will invest more than EUR 20 mil into its new factory of oxygen in Bor In the next three years, Siemens will invest EUR 10 mil in its factory in Subotica, providing jobs for 230 workers In June 2013, Swarovski starts constructing a factory to bring new jobs for 550 workers Company Gucci invests EUR 6 mil into its leather garments producti- on facility in Ruma, to employ 120 workers Petroleum Industry of Serbia (Naftna industrija Srbije - NIS) starts constructing a thermo power plant / gas power plant in Pančevo. Investment value: EUR 182 mil By the end of 2013, new production facilities of Golden Lady in Lozni- ca will employ 200 new workers Around 1,100 jobs to be created in Stara Pazova, in five companies starting their business operations in this municipality - Milšped, EyeMaxx, Streit Group, Sika, Quattro houses By 2016, Turkish company Teknotes will invest USD 700 mil into the construction of a thermo power plant in Despotovac By September 2013, Elixir Group will invest EUR 30 mil into fertilizers factory in Šabac Panonka from Sombor is investing EUR 1.5 mil into its new food-pro- cessing facility With the launching of production of Chipsy Way in Čačak, new jobs will be created for 130 people German company MC Bauchemie will invest several millions of EUR in Sremska Mitrovica, into the construction of concrete-additives factory
    • 10 Synergy use beneficial terms to purchase quality products and services or nominate your offer for NALED market and enjoy the promotion in Serbian professional community www.naled-serbia.org/berza naleD market – (dis)count on good things Event organization in Hyatt Regency DISCOUNT: 10% SUPER DISCOUNT FOR THE FIRST 5 NALED MEMBERS: 15% Valid through 31st December 2013 Hyatt Regency Belgrade, the finest ***** star hotel in Belgrade, located only five minutes by car from the Belgrade city center. In addition to luxury rooms and suites and lavish content it also provides services of organizing business meetings and conferences, as well as personalized catering services. Event management packages come in three categories: express, half-day and full-day package. The express package involves meeting set-up, two-hour coffee break, standard AV equipment and cable internet by the price of EUR 25 per person (minimum 15 partici- pants/2 hours). The half-day package of EUR 35 per person (minimum 15 participants) includes meeting set up, one morning or afternoon coffee break, lunch, standard AV equipment and cable internet. The third, daily package involves a price of EUR 45 per person (minimum 15 participants), including meeting set up, morning and afternoon coffee break, lunch, standard AV equipment and cable internet. Advertising and PR space DISCOUNT: 10% Valid through 31st July 2013 Daily newspaper Danas, corporate member of South East Europe Media Organization (SEEMO) and Association of newspapers Project Syndicate, offers a discount for all NALED members and partners for advertising and PR space. Danas, daily newspaper with national coverage, is one of the rare newspapers not using tabloid methods to increase its circulation. It is famous for providing strong support to Serbian non-government organizations, promoting EU accession and the rights of minorities. Trainings and education in the field of human resources DISCOUNT: 10% SUPER DISCOUNT FOR THE FIRST 5 NALED MEMBERS: 20% Valid through 31st December 2013 Within its Training and Development sector, Gi Group, now OD&M Consulting, offers to all NALED members and partners a discount for trainings in the field of personal and team development, HR management, as well as sales and negotiations, project and change ma- nagement. Gi Group was founded in Serbia in April 2002 with the mission to support clients in accomplishing their business strategies, offering broad knowledge of the local market, vast experience of consultants and tested international practice of their partners. Services offered by Gi Group include: employee training and development, HR consulting, search and selection, staffing solutions – outsourcing services. Leader in the region, one of the most successful companies in the field of labor market, Gi Group can offer comprehensive solutions in all areas of human resources. News marketing@danas.rs www.danas.rs T: +381 11 344-11-86 F: +381 11 344-11-86 Daily newspaper Danas 19 Alekse Nenadovića Street, Belgrade T: +381 11 308 73 27, +381 62 80 33 479 F: +381 11 308 73 71 tijana.raicevic@odmconsulting.com www.odmconsulting.rs OD&M Consulting 52 Prote Mateje Street, Belgrade T: +381 11 301 1139 F: / belgrade.regency@hyatt.com www.belgrade.regency.hyatt.com Hotel Hyatt Regency Belgrade 5 Milentija Popovića Street, 11070 Belgrade, Serbia
    • 11june 2013 | www.naled-serbia.org/compendium www.naled-serbia.org/training Scholarships and trainings Service information SUPPORT TO CSO PROJECTS Deadline for applications: N/A Donor: Royal Norwegian Embassy Beneficiaries: NGO Purpose: strengthening the rule of law, good governance and anticorruption, defense and security sector reform, strengthening human rights, economic development and entrepreneurship, environment protection Maximum amount of funds: EUR 100,000.00 EXCHANGE 4 – SUPPORT TO MUNICIPALITIES Deadline for applications: 4th July 2013 Donor: EU Delegation to Serbia Beneficiaries: local governments Purpose: municipal projects in the fields of environment protection, local economic development, social protection on the local level Maximum amount of funds: EUR 200,000.00 INCENTIVES FOR NEW JOBS CREATED Deadline for applications: N/A Donor: National Employment Service Beneficiaries: businesses, local governments Purpose: Supporting employment in local government units and companies Maximum amount of funds: RSD 400,000.00 SUPPORT TO EU INTEGRATION Deadline for applications: 31st December 2013 Donor: Fund for an Open Society Beneficiaries: state and provincial institutions, municipalities, NGO, associations Purpose: actualization of the education reform issue and its placing on the political agenda, acceleration of Serbia’s EU accession process, judicial reform and establishing full guarantees for its independence, harmonization of regional development of Serbia and strengthening of cross-border cooperation etc. Maximum amount of funds: N/A Database of funds – Compendium Training for SMEs: improving the investment readiness Deadline for applications: 28th June 2013 Organizer: National Agency for Regional Development NARR, Ministry of Finance and Economy, Ministry of Education, Science and Techno- logical Development Participants: Small and medium enterprises Venue and date: Belgrade, Novi Sad, Niš, Kragujevac (Serbia), July 2013 This type of program was developed aiming to assist companies, in particular innovative enterprises with large growth potential, to attract investment capital and understand the needs and requests of the inves- tors. The Program for improving the investment readiness will involve training, advisory support, mentoring and technical assistance, to support enterprises in Serbia in improving those segments of work and influencing their investment readiness. Practice in German Parliament (International Parliamentary Scholarships) Deadline for applications: 30st June 2013 Organizer: German Bundestag, Free University, Humbolt University and Technical University in Berlin Participants: Youth under 30, with knowledge of German language, interested in public administration work Venue and date: Berlin (German), July 2013 German Parliament offers young people an opportunity to learn about the German parliamentary system and political decision-making pro- cesses and to obtain practical experience in the work of the Parliament. The program is intended for young people interested and wishing to have an active role in the democratic shaping of their countries. The partici- pants receive a EUR 450 scholarship, paid accommodation, insurance, as well as covered travel expenses. Money prizes for special achievements in investigative journalism Deadline for applications: 20th July 2013 Organizer: Central European Initiative (CEI), South East Europe Media Organization (SEEMO), Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS) Participants: Journalists from Serbia (press, TV, online, agencies) Venue and date: / For the category Professional journalists, candidates who had success in in- vestigative journalism and are still actively involved in journalism may apply. For the category Young journalists, candidates who are active in the field of investigative journalism and who published an investigative article meeting the professional standards may apply. Potential candidates may be nominated by individuals, organizations, media companies. Self-nominations are not allowed.
    • 12 Synergy Success and competitiveness of a local government depend on whether a municipality sees itself exclusively as a service for citizens and relies on assistance from the state when it comes to investments, or it is ready to take local economic develo- p-ment into its own hands. Even though the role of the state is crucial for the creation of overall business environment and attracting large-scale investors such as FIAT, cities and municipalities can do a lot in terms of developing local economy and attracting investments of smaller (but not negligible) scale. This is exactly the essence of local economic development (LED), as a process where municipalities and businesses work together on improving the overall economic strength of the local community. In these efforts, some municipali- ties have more success than others. The less successful will say that the others had better legacy, more help from the state, better geographic location... However, the most common factor that contributed to having one municipality stand out from the others was a shared idea and persistence of several people to make the idea come to life. Pioneers of local economic development, like Inđija or Zrenjanin, appeared at the beginning of the previous decade, and these were the first municipalities that under- stood and took over this new assignment to themselves, primarily thanks to strong leadership. At that time, the biggest obstacle was the “lack” of construction land that in Synergy could be given to a potential investor for use or ownership. Not only were cities and municipalities unable to sell or rent their resources (land, buildings, office space), but they could not obtain any property without the consent of republic organs either. The extent to which this hindered local economic development is needless to stress – particu- larly threatened were business incubators, industrial parks, brownfields and similar projects, since they involved management and disposal of real estate. A large number of municipalities lamented over their faith for years, but some of them used old coo- perative land, adapted its purpose, developed infrastructure and ga- ined advantage over the others. Other municipalities attracted foreign investors by partnering with private land owners. Some acquired ownership of the land or facilities by purchase and conversion of military property. When municipalities partially resolved the problem of land, there was a new challenge – infrastructure. The cost of infrastructure and connections for one industrial location of around 30 ha is approximately EUR 4 million. Bearing in mind that total budget of a mid-developed municipality with 50,000 inhabitants was approximately EUR 5 million in 2005, it is easy to conclude the money for infrastructure was lacking. They dealt with this problem in various manners, using vari- ous funding sources, loans, donations, state aid and often private equity (partnership Inđija and Zrenjanin are the first municipalities that understood the importance of having a consolidated vision for development and more importantly, they had the persistence and determination to go about its implementation with the private sector). At the same time, the appetites had to be reduced, so the first industrial locations that were equipped were not bigger than 5 ha. This way the industrial zones started emerging and the municipa- lities could offer locations to new investors for construction of factories, shopping malls or office space. This new „Serbian land“, that appeared at investment and real estate fairs, had the task to distinguish itself from compe- tition and earn trust of investors. The most efficient manner of gaining credibility before new investors was based on upgrading the cooperation with existing businesses, which turned out to be the best promoters of a municipality provided they are satisfied with local business conditions. On the other hand, the rate of employment at the local level, living standard and munici- pal budget depend primarily on the existing businesses, so more progressive munici- palities soon recognized that cooperation with local companies is the key to successful economic development. This meant not only the introduction of new services for businesses, but also a change in the approach and manner of completing day-to-day administration with the busine- sses. The first reforms in this field involved establishment of municipal service centers and utility centers, as well as one-stop-shops for registration of businesses and issuing of permits. Maybe the most significant reform of this type was the forming of municipal Local Economic Development offices, starting from 2006 onwards. These were the key to municipal development Good leaders are the USAID research indicated that 63% of foreign investors chose Serbia thanks to previously established business contacts
    • 13june 2013 | first departments in municipal administrati- on that replaced the old administrative role for a development function. Their form and manner of establishment can vary (servi- ce, department, agency, team within the Mayor’s office), but regardless of their posi- tion within municipal structures, they deal with strategic planning, investment promo- tion, identification of problems faced by the businesses, preparation and implementation of economic development projects, etc. The office role is to serve as a mediator between the businesses and the state (public sector) and ease and accelerate communication of businesses and public service providers. Finally, along with bringing institutional framework, in 2007 the new Law on Local Government also established the lacking legal framework for dealing with LED, due to which investment promotion and development of existing businesses were officially placed under the authority of cities and municipalities. The same year, NALED Local economic development in Serbia initiated the Business-Friendly Certification program in order to assist the local govern- ments in jumping into this role in the most efficient manner. Today, almost one third of all municipalities in Serbia recognize the importance of local economic development and are improving their business enviro- nment through NALED certification pro- gram. The most successful ones found their way to the list of Top investment destinati- ons in South East Europe 2012/13, prepared by the renowned Financial Times. Finally, it should be noted that local econo- mic development does not provide answers to all the questions. There are many things that are still decided upon by the state. The state determines taxes and regulates the financing of local governments so it has the main mechanism of control, as well as sti- mulation of development, in its own hands. The state decides on the construction of in- ternational road network and inter-munici- pal infrastructure, investments into railroad and air traffic. Hence, investing into traffic infrastructure on local level can be futile for those municipalities that are located on the main road intersections. However, the local government and local policies influence the supply of water, sewerage, gas, degree of land development. Local governments also create the processes and procedures the businesses need to go through within the local administration, availability of work force or public transport, price of utility services and amounts of utility fees. The results of actions taken by local officials (or lack thereof) make the key difference among municipalities located at similar geographic positions, with the same legacy. In successful municipalities, a team of people took the responsibility and initiative to identify problems, develop solutions and work persistently and efficiently on their implementation. These people make all the difference between more and less successful municipalities in Serbia. Jelena Bojović, NALED Policy DirectorJelena Bojović, NALED Policy Director In successful municipalities, a team of local officials took the responsibility and initiative to identify problems, develop solutions and work consistently and efficiently on their implementation. These people make all the difference between successful and less effective municipalities in Serbia
    • 14 Synergy Implementing reforms is focus area for development are local economic development and regional development. These are not mu- tually exclusive and in fact the final activities are similar if not the same; however for the sake of clarity a brief explanation of each will now be provided. Local economic development seeks to build up the economic capacity of an area to improve its economic future and to improve the quality of life for all. It is a process by which public, business and the non-government sectors work collectively to create better conditions for economic growth. The process is invariably led by the Local Governments who seek to build up the economic capacity of a local area and to improve its economic future and the quality of life for all. For those wanting a more compre- hensive review on LED regarding the theory, background and practical guidance on how it should be implemented, please refer to the excellent World Bank publication Local Eco- nomic Development Quick Reference Guide. Regional development is encapsulated by the EU regional policy that aims to reduce the significant economic, social and territorial disparities that exist between Europe’s regions. The objectives of this policy are convergence solidarity among regions, regional com- petitiveness and employment and European territorial cooperation. European regions are standardized according to the NUTS clas- sification which is a hierarchical system for dividing up the economic territory of the EU in Synergy Cutting the red tape is a key focus area for local development. It is the municipal leadership who are best placed to implement such actions Tom Thorogood, local and regional development initiatives expert In the course of the last 10 years Serbia has experienced a difficult transition process as it seeks to implement democratic reforms, enter the EU and restructure its economy. This transition coupled with the global economic crisis has had a marked impact on the country and its economy. The problems faced include high unemployment, poor infrastructure, an aging population and migration from the poorer regions to the main centers leading to a self-perpetuating spiral of underdevelopment in certain parts of the country. The two approaches widely adopted for local
    • 15june 2013 | a key local development for the purpose of the collection, development and harmonization of EU regional statistics and socio-economic analyses of the regions. NUTS 1 are major socio-economic regions, NUTS 2 are basic regions for the applications of regional policies, and NUTS 3 are small regions for specific diagnoses. This article focuses on the NUTs 3 level that in Serbia translates approximately into two Districts. In practice, all the different actors are aiming to do very similar things that can best be described as influencing the factors that affect the economy of a geographical area, whether it is a region or a municipality or both, such as the quality of the public sector management; policies affecting the availability or commu- nal infrastructure; and factors affecting labor productivity in the local economy including housing, health, education services, skills avail- ability, training opportunities and transport. All these hard and soft infrastructure factors are key determinants of an area’s comparative advantage and form the backbone for a successful local economy. In terms of the specific activities and results that these various interventions have achieved, they can roughly be consolidated under certain specific themes. Strategy Development: There is now a plethora of strategies developed at the local level with the majority of municipalities having at least one strategy and many having several address- ing specific issues. Despite the coordination between the donors there is still a tendency for individual projects to insist upon new strate- gies that will be developed according to their guidelines and that will address the needs of that specific project. While the aim has always been to coordinate this strategic planning with one third of municipalities believe naleD’s solution The evidence would suggest that municipal leaders are realizing the need for action on this issue and are taking concrete steps. Examples of this include the fact that more than 60 local governments in Serbia embraced NALED’s certification program as a mechanism for improving capacity of local administration and creating an environment favorable to economic development and investments. Local development direction the municipal budgeting process, this has rarely actually occurred. Therefore, in the majority of cases the strategies have little or no connection with the municipal investment planning, which thus reduces their real value. Infrastructure Investment: This has generally taken the form of a grant with some match- ing funding that addresses key issues such as water, sewage, educational infrastructure and economic infrastructure. In many cases different donors have combined their funding to support one intervention. The majority of these projects are the product of a strategic planning process and in recent years there has been a move to support larger projects relying on a number of funding sources including borrowing. Administrative Reform: A number of different approaches have been adopted here includ- ing activities such as capacity development of municipal staff, the establishment of Citizen Assistance Centers and lobbying and advocacy around specific issues at the local and central level such as “building permits” and “register- ing a business”. Evaluating all these different interventions and the impact they have had is well beyond the re- mit of this article. However, what is clear is that Serbia has significant regional disparities with certain parts of the country being significantly less developed than others. Furthermore it is clear that the majority of bilateral donors are gradually phasing out their support to Serbia. So the question is what the focus should be for municipal development in the future. The answer is: clear administrative reform. This can mean a number of things as highlighted earlier; however in this article it refers to creat- ing an enabling environment and eradicating the red tape and bureaucracy which businesses face at every level. Through publications such as The World Bank’s Doing Business Report it is clear Serbia has fundamental problems in this respect, many of which can only be ad- dressed at the central level. However, anecdotal evidence such as the success of Inđija Munici- pality, suggest there is much that can be done at the local level with the key ingredients being strong leadership and political will. The evidence would suggest that municipal leaders are realizing the need for action on this issue and taking concrete steps. Examples of this include the fact that eight municipalities have now been certified as investor friendly by NALED, having passed through a process that in the majority of cases involves the implemen- tation of reforms to the manner in which they provide services. To conclude, implementing reforms that make doing business easier is a key focus area for local development. It is the municipal leadership who are best placed to implement such actions and it would appear that this message is now being taken up and acted upon. That being said there is still much to be done in this sector if Serbian municipalities hope to compete with other loca- tions for foreign and domestic investment.
    • 16 Synergy How much do you really know about LeD? 1. What is the definition of the term „local economic development (LED)”? a. Local economic development is a process managed by the state in order to encourage balanced regional development of the whole country. b. Local economic development is a process managed by cities and municipalities, in co- operation with partners from private, public and civil sector, with the goal of strengthe- ning the existing businesses, promotion of new investments and increased employment in local communities. c. Local economic development is a process managed by businesses in order to raise their productivity and profitability at the local level. 2. Which of the following LED tools generates potentially the largest number of new jobs? a. Business incubator. b. Business Improvement District - BID. c. Industrial zone / park. 3. What is the difference between the greenfield and brownfield investments? a. Greenfield investments refer to investing into construction of new production facili- ties, and brownfields involve purchase and adaptation of existing ones. b. Greenfield investments mean investing in- to clean technologies and brownfields mean dirty technologies. c. There is no difference. 4. What is the difference between an industrial zone and industrial park? a. There is no difference; these are different terms defining the same concept. b. Industrial zone is a location of up to 100 ha, and an industrial park covers a larger area. c. Industrial park is a broader term than the industrial zone, since in addition to construction land it also involves relevant infrastructure and professional management of the park. 5. Which tax generates most revenues for budgets of local governments in Serbia? a. Income tax. b. Property tax. c. Local taxes and fees. 6. Which institutions fall under the jurisdiction of local governments? a. Cadaster. b. Public utility companies. c. National Employment Agency offices at the local level. 7. How can municipalities improve the competitiveness of local labor force? a. By introducing new educational profiles in high schools and faculties. b. By partnering with businesses to orga- nize trainings and internship programs for students and unemployed. c. By reforming the educational system. 8. Employment rates and revenues in local governments primarily depend on…? a. Local businesses. b. New foreign investments. c. State subsidies. 9. What are public-private partnerships (PPP)? a. Providing tax incentives to the private sector. b. Cooperation between businesses and municipalities in the field of corporate social responsibility. c. Cooperation and joint effort of public and private sector in producing public goods or providing public services. aNsweRs: (1–b,2–c,3–a,4–c,5–a,6–b,7–b,8–a,9–c) TEST
    • 17june 2013 | British companies will always choose an investment destination with maximum return on investment and a minimum risk. Serbia has a lot of characteristics promo- ting itself: an excellent location, a large number of talented workers and EU perspective, which will encourage the Government to further economic reforms. However, companies will not invest if they are not confident in the rule of law and lack of corruption – says Sir Paul Judge, Chairman of British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce. Do you have any special strategy to improve foreign investment to Serbia and are British investors expressing more interest to invest in our country recently? The Chamber wants to enhance networks and communication between the two economies. Serbia remains very much on the radar of UK business. Trade missions over the past six months have significantly increased with recent visits to Serbia by delegations from the British security, railway and business training industries. During the year, UK Trade and Industry, the Commercial Section of the British Embassy in Belgrade, has had its busiest-ever year in terms of enquiries, trade missions and other initiatives. British companies will choose, from a global mar- ketplace, an investment destination where returns are maximized and risks are minimized. Serbia has a lot of characteristics to recommend it: british investors are interested in Serbia more than ever Reduced bureaucracy and lower administration costs place your country in a high position compared to the surrounding markets, and there are also other competitive advantages, such as the benefits of trade treaties and investment potential in key industries, such as agriculture INTeRvIew Sir Paul Judge, Chairman of British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce In order to attract capital from London, Serbia needs to offer large-scale projects –investments of at least EUR 20 million a great geographic location, a talented pool of wo- rkers, and an EU perspective which will encourage government’s drive for further economic reform. The Chamber and its leading members like the international audit firm KPMG want to help UK companies become assured that Serbia is firmly committed to an ambitious path of labor, capital and market reforms, sound fiscal management, and improvements in the investment environment. If it can do this – along the lines of those proposed by foreign investors’ bodies in Serbia and by respected global comparisons such as the Doing Business Guide and Global Competitiveness Report – Serbia will find itself especially well-placed to take advantage of resurging British investment. Recently you said “Serbia has significant and growing investment potential“. How can Serbia enhance its potential for economic development? I believe that following its very difficult recent history, Serbia can now hope to enjoy a much improved economy.
    • 18 Synergy The EU’s positive decision on candidate status is very important for the investment climate in Serbia. Reduced bureaucracy and lower admi- nistration costs place the country in a strong position when compared with its surrounding markets. In addition, Serbia can further impro- ve its opportunities by enhancing business and investment-friendly policies and by building on its strengths with its strategic position in South East Europe, attractive benefits coming out of tax and other treaties and its potential in impor- tant industries such as agriculture. Investments from other countries, such as the Fiat car plant in Kragujevac and the potential of the South Stream gas pipeline, will generate interest from British investors in allied industry sectors. As liquidity returns to the financial markets the- re will be much competition for debt and equity capital which means that Serbian businesses must work hard to improve the attractiveness of their enterprises. Undertaking the necessary financial and operational restructuring cannot be avoided if Serbian companies are to secure inward investment and strategic partnerships successfully. The Chamber will work hard to support Serbian companies seeking financial investors, strategic partners and new markets in the United Kingdom while leveraging the benefits of EU candidacy, as well as the EU Stabilization and Accession Agreement which remains to be ratified only by Lithuania. Why do we have such a poor record of British investment to Serbia up to now? During last year, Serbia exported about € 110 million to the UK and imported € 130 million from the UK so there is already a reasonable flow of trade. In terms of investment however the official British record is perhaps misleading. London remains Europe’s primary equity and debt capital market and a lot of investment and restructuring for Serbia and Serbian companies is done through London. Many British-funded investment vehicles operate outside the UK for tax reasons through holdings in, for example, Switzerland, the Netherlands or Cyprus and their investments are recorded in Serbia as being from those countries even though the money has come from the UK. Serbian businesses seeking Western capital must recognize that they must meet the requi- rements for enhanced financial disclosure and compliance which are commonplace in interna- tional markets like London. Also, investments must normally be of a significant size to attract London capital, for example a minimum of EUR 20 million. Investors need to have as much certainty and confidence as possible when deploying capital into Serbia and a lot more can be done by Serbian business leaders to restructure their enterprises and make themselves investor-ready interview Legal and financial systems need reform Resistance to transparent presentation of data may be an obstacle for British investors in networking with Serbian businesses, in particular since many local financial institutions have not conducted an in-depth financial analysis of the organizations they support. This points out a necessity for changes and improvements of current legal and financial systems in Serbia, so that the investors can get a fair insight into the business performance and management. and fit-for-purpose in order to secure internati- onal investment. As a part of the celebrations for Serbian Month in Great Britain 2012, you hosted the evening business reception at your home in Central London. What did you speak about, and what are your impressions of Serbian people? I firstly emphasized the close historical relation- ships between the UK and Serbia. This year is the 175th Anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. In addition, in 2013 the world is celebrating the 1700th Anniversary of the decision by the Emperor Constantine in 313 to legalize Christianity in the Roman Empire, one of the most important proclamati- ons in history. This brings together Serbia and Britain as Constantine was born in Nis in Serbia and became Emperor while he was in the city of York in Britain. I also talked about the potential for building upon the progress that Serbia has made in the last decade, culminating in its becoming an EU candidate country. It is clear that many other countries which had a long period of communist rule and then a difficult period of
    • 19june 2013 | Sir Paul Judge, Chairman of British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce studying and working here. In particular I noted the excellent connection which has grown up between the University of Cambridge and Serbia with the Pexim Foundation generously providing scholarships for Serbian students to study at Cambridge, including three ladies who are currently doing their MBA at the Judge Business School. The biggest British investment made in Serbia thus far has been the acquisition of the Vranje Tobacco Industry by British American Tobacco in 2003. Recently, it was announced in our media that our spas (‘wellness centers’) are very interesting for investors. I do know of forthcoming investments from the UK in the renewable energy, mining and healthcare sectors although I cannot comment on their behalf. Interest from British strategic partners will grow given the favorable EU candidacy status Serbia now enjoys and the Chamber will support Serbian companies in efforts to access the City of London investment community. We must remember though that decisions to invest are not taken overnight and in many cases can take many months to develop. I would expect to see a greater level of British strategic partnerships with Serbian enterprises and financial investments. This is especially so as Serbian companies and institutions understand the benefits of the new EU-compliant legislation now enacted in Serbia, for example the Laws on Companies, Capital Markets and Public Private Partners- hips. However the experiences of British and other investors in recent years have been mixed, not least the disappointment of the mooted UK investment at Vrnjačka Banja. You are the chairman of Greenhouse Capital, with an office in Belgrade. How much have you invested so far in Serbia? Greenhouse secured € 22.5 million three years ago to consolidate the SE Europe telecoms sector which was deployed in the creation of Orion Telekom. Orion is the consolidation of SezamPro, Mediaworks and Novi Sad internet services provider Neobee, and is now Serbia’s leading fixed line operator after Telekom Serbia. That transaction took 18 months to develop meaning that Greenhouse has been present in Serbia since 2007. The European Bank for Re- construction and Development and the Royal Bank of Scotland were also key investors. Late last year, Greenhouse developed and introduced an Alternative Fixed Income Strategies (AFIS) product to enable various Western financial institutions with emerging market capital to have an alternative source of investment in SE Europe. AFIS is aimed at the countries of the former Yugoslavia, Albania, Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania and Ukraine whe- re individual corporate bond-like transactions are not of a sufficient scale or transparency to enable direct investments. Initially AFIS will support Serbian, Croatian and Montenegrin markets as part of a regional strategy aimed at deploying over EUR 1.5 billion of hybrid capital with Belgrade as the headquarters of Greenhouse’s SE Europe operations. Our goal therefore is to create a positive climate for further investment alongside developing a strong locally-based international corporate finance advisory team. There are also several new transactions in the pipeline and we hope to make announcements very soon. There is a huge demand for agricultural products throughout the world. Serbia has great potential within agricultural produce. Why are potential investors not investing in producing food in Serbia and then exporting abroad? It is true that food security is of global interest with Serbia’s strengths in producing agricultural commodities especially organic products, fruit and meat processing potentially in very high demand. However, the smallholder structure of many Serbian farms means it can be difficult to attract investors which would seek larger scale production. Serbia’s own companies, for exam- ple Victoria Group and MK Group, are leading their field across the SE European region, and have access to markets and capital in Serbia which means that they may not necessarily need external investment at this stage. However, as they seek to expand and modernize producti- on possibly outside of Serbia, for example via funding investments and possibly acquisitions, they may well seek to utilize London’s capital market. It is in this area where I believe the future cooperation lies which the Chamber, and indeed Greenhouse, would support. About Sir Paul Judge Sir Paul Judge is an English business and political figure. He was educated at school in London and then at Trinity College, Cambridge, and at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania as a Thouron Fellow. His early career was with Cadbury Schweppes where he undertook a number of international postings and projects and whe- re he led the buyout of their food compani- es. In the 1990s he was Chairman of Food from Britain, Director General of Britain’s Conservative Party and a Ministerial Adviser at the United Kingdom Cabinet Office. In the 2000s he was Chairman of the Royal Society of Arts and President of the Charte- red Management Institute. As well as being Chairman of the British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce and of Greenhouse Capital Group which operates in Belgrade, his ap- pointments currently include: UK chairman of the British-North American Committee, a special adviser to the Royal Institute of In- ternational Affairs, a member of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. He is married to Lady Barbara Judge, Chairman of the United Kingdom Pension Protection Fund, former Chairman of the UK Atomic Energy Autho- rity, current Business Ambassador for UK Trade and Industry; and has two sons. adjustment have now become places of stability and transparency. Serbia deserves to achieve the same transformation which should allow it to achieve growth rates well above those of We- stern Europe as Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” of market forces takes investment to a place where many businesses can be competitive. I also commented on the strong Serbian presence in London with many of its people
    • 20 Synergy As the General Manager of Coca- Cola, you had the opportunity to work in countries in the region. How would you rate the business environment in Serbia compared to other countries? I may say that all countries in the region, and beyond, are facing the same challenges. These are certainly influencing the business envi- ronment, but they are all the more reason for us to be more creative and innovative in our work and always go one step further. Serbian market is no exception, and for this reason we find particular satisfaction in the fact that it is one of the fastest developing markets in Eu- rope for our company. We’ve invested much effort, time and funds here in order to deve- lop a large business system contributing to the country’s economy and society, not only with business operations, but also continuous years of success in Serbia investments in the local community. You were recently appointed as Vice-Presi- dent of NALED Managing Board. In your opi- nion, which steps should be taken by the state and which by the local governments in order to accelerate local economic development? Multi-sector cooperation is crucial and necessary. It is highly important that we work together with partners from public, private and civil sectors on improving the business envi- ronment. Our experience on various projects indicates that such cooperation and combina- tion of different expertise produce best results. It is therefore essential that we listen to each other’s needs in order to identify important topics and improve our efficiency. We need to advise each other, learn from each other and be true partners in the business process. INTeRvIew This year, one of the largest business systems and leaders of social responsibility in Serbia is celebrating 45 years since they produced the first bottle of favorite beverage in our country. General Manager of Coca-Cola Hellenic Serbia, Ramon Weidinger, speaks for Synergy about the celebration of this anniversary and the perspective of foreign investors regarding local business conditions
    • 21june 2013 | Ramon Weidinger, General Manager of Coca-Cola Hellenic Serbia How would you rate Coca-Cola’s coopera- tion with the local governments? For each market we operate, we find it significant to invest into local community, be the initiators, and in cooperation with partners stimulate activism that would bring about some changes. Improving the lives of citizens is a priority for us, as we believe that a business system is as sustainable as the local community in which it operates. We find this to be our task – to make a contribution. In this regard, we are very dedicated to creating real partnership with the local governments, in order to define the most important issues to address and jointly work for changes. Which advantages of Serbia would you stress the most when presenting our country to a potential investor? The importance of this market is seen in the fact that this year we are celebrating an important anniversary – 45 years of doing business. The fact that we have been present in Serbia for four and a half decades, the period in which we’ve grown into one of the largest business systems in the country, is sufficient recommendation. Having achieved significant success here, we are committed to celebrating many more anniversaries in Serbia. Your company is one of the first five hol- ders of Corporate Social Responsibility Certificate awarded by NALED. What are the manners of Coca-Cola’s contribution to the local community? We are very pleased to be among the first five companies that received this re- nowned certificate. For us, social res- ponsibility is a priority, and the prin- ciple of sustainability is embedded in our entire business process. The Contribution of Coca-Cola system to the economy and society Coca-Cola has been present in Serbia since 1967, when the first bottle of this bevera- ge was produced in local facilities. Over the previous decade only, the company inve- sted EUR 200 million in this market, and Coca-Cola has grown into one of the most significant business systems in the country. This was also shown in last year’s study on socio-economic impact of Coca-Cola in Serbia, developed by consulting company Steward Redqueen, which is the first research of such type in our country. The results showed that Coca-Cola system in Serbia pays EUR 3 million in taxes into the budget, and supports additional EUR 107 million of tax revenues for the state. Adding up the profit of suppliers and retailers who work with the company, as well as taxes and con- tributions they pay, total value added to Serbian economy by Coca-Cola system reaches EUR 345 million or 1.18% of GDP. Similarly, 1,300 of Coca-Cola’s direct employees support approximately 18,500 additional jobs, or 0.62% of entire work force of Serbian economy, which is a 1:13 ratio. Basically, each direct employee in Coca-Cola assists in creation of additional 13 jobs in Serbian economy. key areas for us are environment protection, support to vulnerable groups, investing in youth and talented people and promotion of active and healthy lifestyle. This certi- ficate is another confirmation that we are on the right track and we will certainly be looking to continue the traditional support projects, but also new initiatives, such as the construction of 45 open-air gyms across the country. Celebrating 45 years of production in Serbia, in cooperation with NALED and Ministry of Regional Development and Local Government, Coca-Cola is awarding 45 open-air gyms to cities and municipali- ties across Serbia. Why did you choose to celebrate the anniversary in this manner? Celebrating 45 years since the first produ- ced Coca-Cola in Serbia is more than just a corporate anniversary for us. This is why we decided to launch something big that will raise the quality of life in municipalities all over Serbia. Promotion of active and health lifestyle is one of the pillars of our corporate social responsibility. Through the platform “Active healthy living” we implement numerous projects, trying to inspire and activate people to adopt good habits, find a sport that suits them and do it either professionally or as recreation. In addition to pointing out the importance of active life and recreation, we also wish to raise aware- ness on the importance of balanced nutrition and healthy habits. Corporate anniversary celebration Celebrating 45 years from the beginning of production in Serbia, in cooperation with National Alliance for Local Economic De- velopment (NALED) and with the support of Ministry of Regional Development and Local Government, Coca-Cola system has initiated a project to provide the citizens with 45 open-air gyms. The citizens will vote to determine where these Coca-Cola active zones would be built. The project involves all municipalities, divided into three cate- gories based on their population – small, medium-sized and large. By the end of July, via website www.45godinausrbiji.rs you may vote for your preferred municipality; 15 municipa- lities with the highest number of votes in each category will be awarded. The first open-air gym is scheduled to be ope- ned in September, another nine by the end of this year and the remaining 35 by May 2014. The project for constructing 45 open-air gyms is only one step further in this direction. We are certain that Coca-Cola active zones will be the place where many citizens will spend their time in a more quality way, exercising in open air and doing something good for their health. What is life and doing business like in Serbia, what is it that you find the most appealing? I am very glad to have the opportunity to work in Serbia, because along with the very dynamic work I perform in this important regional market, my leisure time is also very pleasant. The people are open and friendly and this is certainly an important factor for feeling at home.
    • 22 Synergy What is your interpretation of the term ‘business-friendly environment’? Čedomir Živković: When speaking of Vršac, as one of the most developed local governme- nts in Serbia, for me the term business friendly environment involves the supportive climate for the existing businesses, both international and domestic, we have been cooperating in the previous years. For years Vršac has been successful in maintaining and improving the business-friendly approach, enabling the investor to work with more ease in Vršac and to feel better than anywhere else. This is also confirmed by NALED’s Business-Friendly Certificate we acquired in 2012. The Muni- cipality of Vršac, primarily thanks to its LED Office, has managed to position itself and improve its image of a reliable partner in the eyes of private sector. We’ve also achieved the unique, fourth level of e-government in Serbia, showing we are a transparent local gover- nment, working for the benefit of its citizens. Miroslav Miletić: Business-friendly envi- ronment in macroeconomic sense is probably the dream of most managers in Serbia, bearing in mind that in the last 20 years we haven’t had a single year with stable business conditions. These certainly include: - Clearly defined and enforceable strategies 3D interview as the backbone of a country’s main econo- mic policies (development, export) - Business environment with low inflation rate, affordable loans, stable consumption and stable foreign exchange rate, - Liberal, European-standards market in terms of protection of competition, consu- mers and national brands, - Depoliticized and efficient management wi- th developed tax system and other fiscal rules, - State consensus on economic priorities. At the local level, this is certainly different than in the times when I was the Secretary of Municipal Assembly in Požarevac, but under stable business environment I mean efficient performance of all tasks under the jurisdiction of local governments, as well as the functions that the central government performs throughout the country, prima- rily through its regions. Many of the above stated elements could also be applied to the local government level, as can be seen in some municipalities that adhere to these standards in their day-to-day operations. Gordan Velev: Civil society in Serbia works in very difficult circumstances. It is mostly financed by international donors, while the support from public funds and private sector is not satisfying. On the other hand, one should understand the fact that Serbian economy is in deep crisis and without new investments the overall economic stability may be questioned. Hence the cooperation of all stakeholders is the answer, and tax subsidies and incentives to businesses supporting civil society is the way to go. Viable solutions come as a result of dia- logue among key actors from all three sectors. I believe that in Serbia we still lack broader dialogue on the need of balance among the three pillars of every modern society (public, private and civil). What would be your message to foreign investors – whether and why they should invest in Serbia? Čedomir Živković: My message to foreign investors is that they shouldn’t have any dilemmas - we will be able to answer any qu- estion regarding investment conditions and incentives at any time, at least a few minutes faster than our competitors, other cities and municipalities in Serbia. Vršac introduced corporate approach to resolving problems and provision of public services, motivating Čedomir Živković, Mayor of Vršac There is no success without cooperation of all three sectors of the society Miroslav Miletić, Bambi Banat CEO / member of NALED MB We all share the same local problems From the perspective of private, public and civil sector
    • 23june 2013 | us to always be unique and one step ahead of others. So far we’ve managed to do that, and we achieved exceptional success in pharma- ceutical industry. Miroslav Miletić: I would most certainly advise foreign investors to invest in my co- untry, not only for patriotic reasons, but also because of firm and tested belief that Serbia has significant competitive advantages in relation to the region. This primarily refers to the environment, potentials and people, and also the proverbial vitality of our people, especially in the times of difficulties and crisis, that can be witnessed nowadays or in the nineties, when many other economies and communities would not endure what we went through. Gordan Velev: I believe that in Serbia they can find hard-working and educated people, ready to respond to the most-demanding requirements of employers and investors. The Government is even ready to offer incentives to new investors who decide to locate in Serbia. I firmly believe in the European perspective of Serbia, which also means stability, sought by every investor. At the same time, my message to all investors would be to develop a socially responsible program, since people would respect and appreciate such a business more than those solely marching towards profit. In what manner could mu- nicipalities, businesses and CSOs improve their coopera- tion in order to encourage the growth of local economy? Čedomir Živković: I believe the answer is in thinking in a completely different and new manner, seeing each other as local partners, understanding that success comes only if we work together. The three sectors should per- ceive that they are the pillars of sustainable development that can significantly contribute to overall development of local community in the long run. New times in the global market require a shift in thinking and completely new approach to resolving problems. Miroslav Miletić: Improving cooperation among municipalities, businesses and CSOs is reflected primarily in strengthening the awareness in local environments that they all belong to the same community, sharing the same local, primarily utility problems and issues. Their belonging to one of the three sectors should come as secondary important. Raising awareness leads to more efficient execution of specific goals in each area. And better execution of plans and goals strengthens the trust and satisfaction with personal and business environment. Gordan Velev: My answer here leans onto the previous question. Economic and overall social progress is not possible without the dialogue and agreement of all three sectors in our society. Civil society in Serbia can offer its expertise and experience in resol- ving many issues seen in local communities throughout the country. For example, the new Law on Social Protection gives an opportunity for civil society organizations to be involved in the process of social service provision, which cannot be provided by the existing state institutions in an efficient manner. Public-private partnerships and involvement of civil society organizations would bring efficient services to citizens, which is much cheaper than having the state start its own service or department, and civil society organization would be much closer to the sustainable financing model... On the other hand, CSOs often collect funds and use them for grants to assist starting of busi- ness for the poorest citizens or to encourage them to establish clusters and associations. This is an area where private sector can also recognize a window of opportunity. In partnership with the civil society, businesses can multiply the effects of awarded grants, and get reliable partners. At the same time, CSOs are a hub of innovative ideas in the field of public administration reform and multi-sector partnerships. These ideas can help the state become more efficient, but al- so motivate private sector to develop socially responsible perspective in its operations. What is your message to other triangle interviewees (representatives of private and civil sector)? Čedomir Živković: As stated before, partner- ship is definitely the key to success. It is important to make the first step, and we must be ready and willing to listen to the other side and understand their needs. In Vršac we are developing the image of a proactive local government, which is comple- tely opposite to how citizens of Serbia have seen the local officials and administration employees so far. I would also state that they would find a long-term and reliable partner in Vršac. Our slogan – now widely accepted even though it was initially conceived as the promotional slogan of the first Industrial Technological Park in Serbia: Innovation, Teamwork, Partnership – only con- firms this attitude. Miroslav Miletić: All other participants should follow the stated triangle selflessly, free of egoism and vanity. Vanity is a noto- rious trait of Serbian character and a major constraint of our development. It is no wonder our people often say that the hardest growing seed in Serbia is SUCCESS! Gordan Velev: I wish them all the success in their work. Gordan Velev, GRoup 484 We should help each other more Čedomir Živković, Miroslav Miletić and Gordan Velev
    • 24 Synergy Although we walked up and down the whole factory, the milk, in its raw form, freshly arrived from the farms, was nowhere to be seen. When you are visiting the largest factory of milk and dairy products in Serbia, you would expect to see it all around. „But where is the milk?” was the first question we asked the employees in Imlek production facilities. „In order to get adequate product quality, it is crucial that during the entire production process, starting from primary production of raw milk, through transport from the farms and until it gets to the final consumer, the so-called “cold chain” never gets interrupted. This is why one cannot see the raw milk. Once it is milked out of cows, until it gets into the final packaging, the milk practically never leaves the machines. This way we ensure premium quality of the final product” explained Srđan Popović, Marketing Director in Imlek. For this reason, Imlek provides retail facilities with cooling cabinets where their products are stored and displayed. Since the cows are milked on farms in the morning and evening, the milk factory also performs morning and evening receipt of milk. Raw milk is transported from the farms in special thermo stable tanks and immediately analyzed. Some of the analyses performed refer to the temperature, pre- venting further development of microorga- nisms in milk, presence of antibiotics as an important factor of production process, milk fat content, acidity of milk and finally total number of bacteria. Each round of delivered Dairy plant where no milk can be seen After it is milked out of cows, until it gets into final packaging, the milk does not leave the machines. This ensures premium quality of the final product. businesses Visiting Imlek
    • 25june 2013 | Present throughout the region Imlek is a group operating through a network of affiliates throughout the region, including AD Imlek Beograd, Imlek Boka in Montenegro, AD IMB dairy in Bitola, Macedonia, and Mljekoprodukt operating in Kozarska Dubica in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In line with their regional expansion policy, the company is proud of its highly-educated workforce, investing its knowledge and modern technology into continuous improvement of the production pro- cess, thus setting new standards and challenges for their competitors. Favorite domestic brand Imlek’s brand “Moja kravica” (“My little cow”) has received a number of prestigious awards, the most important certainly being – “Favorite domestic brand”. The title, awarded by the consumers within the competition entitled “Moj izbor” (“My choice”) organized by association “Moja Srbija” (“My Serbia”), went to Imlek brand in 2010 and 2012. Moreover, for three years in a row, Imlek was top ranking in the category “milk and dairy products”. milk comes with a quality certificate, guara- nteeing that all products are safe. The majority of company employees work in production. The company operates in three shifts, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In one shift, we saw nearly 70 workers. They worked quickly and skillfully. It was obvious at a glance that they are a well-trained team. In more than one decade, the many of them have been working for the company, they learnt the job, gained routine and now they can easily “shoot out” several thousand product items in only one shift. Still, all of this could not be possible without Imlek’s farmers. They are one of the most important links in the chain, keeping this company on top in the area of milk producti- on and processing. Imlek invested more than EUR 50 million into farm development and improvement of raw milk quality and capacity. Investments into production facilities, tran- sport and logistics also reached tens of millions EUR. Imlek also continuously imports heifers for farmers.
    • 26 Synergy All eyes in Kosjerić are turned to Titan, with the entire local economy and standard of citizens depending on their operations. Fortunately, this company has never ceased developing and investing into local community, ever since it was founded in 1976. Kosjerić cement factory was among the first in Serbia to successfully pass the privatization process and since 2002 it has been operating within Titan Group, interna- tional cement producer. So far, Titan Group invested more than EUR 50 million into envi- ronmental protection, occupational health and safety, production technology and local community. Current production capacities of 750,000 tons of cement a year are sufficient to supply a significant part of Serbian and Montenegrin market. In spite of lower sales of cement due to the crisis, Kosjerić plant still invests significant funds in improving the production process and into its employees, since, as they like to say in Titan, employees are their most important resource. Occupational health and safety has been set as a priority and preco- ndition of employment. Socially responsible approach has earned Titan the OHSAS 18001 certificate. Commitment to the community and business success was recognized in the professional circles – in 2009, they were awarded the Business Leader of the Year prize by Ekonom:east media group. In 2011, the plant invested more than EUR 615,000 in the local community, 85% of this amount going to the municipal budget, and the rest to local clubs, schools, cultural institu- tions and for other activities contributing to higher living standard. Also, in 2011 Titan decided to transfer to the local government one of its properties – the sports-recreational According to the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia, over the previous years Kosjerić has been among the top five municipalities with highest average salaries. This high- ranking position is certainly thanks to the local giant – Titan cement plant, absorbing almost a quarter of available work force in this little town in West Serbia Driving power of kosjerić bUsINesses E 75 E 75 E 75 E 70
    • 27june 2013 | the first ones to obtain an integrated permit Cement plant in Kosjerić was the first company in Serbia to receive the integrated permit (IPPC), proving that they use the best technology and that their products are made by the highest ecology standards applying both to Serbia and the European Union. The permit re- gulates the work conditions in the plant and prescribes maximum levels of harmful ma- terial they can reach in the production process without endangering the environment. The main principles of integrated pollution prevention and control are stopping or reducing the emission at the very source of pollution, cutting the use of non-renewable natural resources and energy, reducing the waste and minimizing the risk to health, envi- ronment and material goods. The certificate means additional investments into reconstructi- on of existing facilities, and since 2002, Titan has allocated EUR 15 million for this purpose. In Serbia, there are 177 companies in total that need to obtain the integrated permit. center involving two soccer fields, indoor sports hall and olympic pool. And what do citizens think about all of this? Thanks to Titan, Kosjerić is among the econo- mically most developed municipalities of We- stern Serbia. Unfortunately, the benefits of high salaries are only enjoyed by those who are fortunate enough to be hired by Titan. Undeveloped SME sector and other industries le- ave three quarters (75%) of working population with no alternative for employment. Local government is there- fore expected to find new ways to encourage local economic growth, through well planned socially responsible work in cooperation with Titan. This area is famous for its domestic rakija (brandy) with denominati- on of origin, as well as plums and raspberries representing the primary or additional source of income for all unemployed or low income families. Likewise, there is a lot of potential for rural development, country tourism, handi- crafts and healthy food. It is exactly Titan that locals perceive as a strong pillar of further development that can and in their mind, should, support all that is good, unique and authentically branded by Kosjerić. Locals will also tell it could be little Norway down there, although they suspect it would take a lot of hard work, just like some of them already do in the cement plant. Titan cement plant: responsible to local community the first ones to obtain an integrated permit Cement plant in Kosjerić was the first company in Serbia to receive the integrated permit (IPPC), proving that they use the best technology and that their products are made by the highest ecology standards applying both to Serbia and the European Union. The permit re- gulates the work conditions in the plant and prescribes maximum levels of harmful ma- terial they can reach in the production process without endangering the environment. The main principles of integrated pollution prevention and control are stopping or reducing the emission at the very source of pollution, cutting the use of non-renewable natural resources and energy, reducing the waste and minimizing the risk to health, envi- ronment and material goods. The certificate means additional investments into reconstructi- on of existing facilities, and since 2002, Titan has allocated EUR 15 million for this purpose. In Serbia, there are 177 companies in total that need to obtain the integrated permit. stern Serbia. Unfortunately, the benefits of high salaries are only enjoyed by those who are fortunate enough to be hired by Titan. Undeveloped SME sector and other industries le- ave three quarters (75%) of working population with no alternative for employment. Local government is there- fore expected to find new ways to encourage local economic growth, through well planned socially responsible work in E 75 E 75 E 70 E 75 E 75 E 70 kOsJeRIĆ 750 thousand tons of cement a year supplies a significant part of markets in Serbia and Montenegro
    • The beginning of 2013 was marked by the lack of reform results the Government of Serbia has been promising during the last two quarters of the previous year. These reforms were supposed to simplify the procedures, lower the cost of doing business and increase the legal certainty, so businesses and citizens are eager to see them come to life. While some of the adopted laws are waiting to come into force, and others are in the draft phase, most important reforms de- pend on regulations which are still in the initial phase of preparation. We hope that the Serbian Government will realize at least a part of the promises in the following quarter of this year. The Government slowed down the activities on elimination of para-fiscal charges, as well as the work on implementing recommenda- tions from the Grey Book and CRR. „De- agencification” stopped upon dissolution of several widely-known authorities that even had some relevant work to do. This reform was supposed to be comprehensive. For start, a list of all companies founded directly or indirectly by the State should have been prepared and presented to the public. We are certain that the Government itself would spot on the list a lot of companies who could be closed down, bringing major effects on the budget without the risks of legal gaps. In short, regulatory activity in the first quarter included the following: Starting from April 1st the new Law on Public Procurement has come into force. The Law should increase the efficiency of the public procurement procedures, and ensure transpa- rency of public procurements through efficient use of public procurement portal. The amount of fees needs to be proporti- onal to the costs of public service provision – in February 2013 a new Regulation on methodology and manner of determining expenses of public service provision was adopted, aiming to reduce the amount of fees to the real cost of service provided. Full No results of promised reforms The Government has slowed down the activities on elimi- nation of para-fiscal charges, as well as the work on imple- menting the initiatives from the Grey Book and CRR (Comprehensive Regulatory Reform) recommendations. „De-agencification” stopped upon dissolution of several widely-known authorities legislative framework Report on the status of reforms Grey Book As for the Grey Book recommendations for cutting the red tape, since the year beginning, the most active was the Ministry of Energy and Environment Protection that adopted or proposed to the Government a larger number of by-laws. Some of the adopted by-laws concern the conditions and procedures for acquiring the status of privileged electricity producer, and regulate the incentives for production of elec- tricity from renewable energy sources, as well as the amount of special incentive for 2013. By amending the Law on Corporate Income Tax, the Ministry of Finance and Economy eliminated the obligation of submitting annual financial report to several different places. By amending the Regulation on the form and content of registration form for VAT taxpayers, this Ministry also partially resolved the pro- blem of inconsistent practice of submitting the VAT form. Ministries and other responsible institutions haven’t made any pro- gress regarding 56 initiatives for improving the regulations. Respon- sible ministries did not even consider two very important, systemic initiatives from the Grey Book V – to eliminate employment record books and health insurance cards. The Ministry of Health has not taken any steps to resolve the huge problem of complicated proce- dure for verification of health insurance card. Additionally, no steps were made to ease the procedure of registration and deregistration of entrepreneurs to RHIF in case they move the head office to a different municipality. A commendable fact is that in this quarter a short, but important amendment to the Trade Law was adopted. Erasing Article 45 of the Law eliminated unnecessary administrative obstacle for new large retail chains to enter our market, thus enabling improvement of the market competition. 28 Synergy
    • implementation of the Regulation should have started on April 30, 2013 so we will evaluate the effects of these new measures in the future. Some simple recommendations of the busi- nesses are still waiting to be adopted: • Ministry of Finance has not abolished the ad- ministrative fees in procedures with Republic Geodetic Authority (GDA), so the parties are still paying two fees for the same procedure (fee to RGA and republic administrative fee). • Ministry of Health has not taken any steps to resolve the huge problem of complicated pro- cedure for verification of health insurance card, that makes 50% of businesses fail to verify health insurance cards for their employees on the first attempt. • Tax Administration did not react to the initia- tive to harmonize their working hours with the needs of clients. Draft Law on Fees for Use of Public Resources has sparked strong reactions among businesses and local governments, so the Ministry of Finance will have to carefully review the basis, rates and distribution of these fees. In spite of numerous objections and initiatives businesses have made to amend the Labor Law, it has remained unchanged since 2005 – for full eight years. For this reason, employers avoid hiring workers who “bear the burden of severance pay” – older unemployed workers. After the termination of the Law on Environ- mental Protection Fund in September 2012, the manner of awarding incentives for environ- ment protection and jurisdiction over this matter was left unregulated, so the regulatory oversight fell at the burden of businesses. Whether the Law on Deadlines for Settling Financial Obligations in Commercial Transa- ctions will have positive effects on the liquidity of Serbian businesses, remains to be deter- mined in the following period, bearing in mind that this regulation has come into force recently (in April). We have no doubt that the Government of RS is conducting reforms with the best intention to ease the operations of businesses and to attract new investments into Serbia. What Serbia certainly needs is acceleration of esse- ntial reforms and synchronization of their implementation. However, the pace of these reforms must not negatively affect their qua- lity. The implementation of reforms should take into account previously accepted RIA methodology which involves public debates and considers the reasonable suggestions made by the businesses, in order to reduce unpleasant reform surprises to a minimum. Additionally, practicing changed regulation is of crucial importance for the reform success. Shorter procedures are not always easier to implement. Unless the reform is implemented Helped the pregnant women, no assistance for new mothers NALED initiative to simplify the procedure for exercising the right to pregnancy reimbur- sement fee resulted in simplification of this procedure in practice (the number of requi- red documents was cut down by 2/3) so the Ministry of Health can take pride in acting upon this initiative. However, the Ministry of Labor, Employment and Social Policy has not taken any steps to ease the procedure for the same pregnant woman when she delivers the baby, to exercise her right for reimbursement during maternity leave. Key recommendations are still out of Government’s focus Resolving some of the key problems hinde- ring business is still out of Government’s focus, probably due to their estimated effects on the republic budget (e.g. redu- ction of contributions for compulsory social security). Simplifying the procedures with republic authorities such as Republic Health Insurance Fund (RHIF) and Republic Geode- tic Authority (RGA) has still not contributed to acceleration of individual procedures... 29june 2013 | by some new authority, the changed proce- dures are conducted by the same people, so the expected reform effects are often not there due to its bad implementation.
    • 30 Whether and to what extent can a certain law be implemented in practice often depends on the adoption of required accompanying regula- tions (decrees, decisions or rulebooks). In order to stimulate the responsible institu- tions to action and make their work more transparent, NALED developed the By-Law Barometer – the first online system for mo- nitoring the dynamics of adopting by-laws relevant for economic development. The Barometer monitors the progress that the Government of Serbia, ministries and independent regulatory authorities make in adopting 362 by-laws related to 27 systemic laws which regulate business environment in Serbia and directly influence the compe- titiveness of domestic businesses. Unlike the data on execution of Government’s Legislation Program, which is mostly classified, the Barometer is available to the broader public via the Internet at the address barometar.naled-serbia.org. According to the Barometer, average delay in adopting by-laws compared to the de- adline given by the Law reaches 615 days. This means that on average, regulations or rulebooks in Serbia are one year and eight months late! DYNamICs Of bY-law aDOpTION NUmbeR Of DaYs Average delay for non-adopted 615 The greatest delay 1,120 Fastest adopted 10 (after the adoption of Law) Slowest adopted 861 (after deadline) Average delay for adopted 175 barometar.naled-serbia.org legIslaTIve fRamewORk Why some prosaic activity such as paying income tax and contri- butions is worth full attention of both local governments and businesses? Income tax is paid at a 10% rate while the first RSD 11,000 is tax-exempted. Cities and municipalities are entitled to 80% of collected funds and the remaining 20% goes to the state budget. Tax revenues are not filling the budget of the local government where the compa- ny operates, but where the employees have residence. The obligation of distributing wage taxes to the accounts of individual municipa- lities where the employees reside falls at the burden of the employer. The bigger a compa- ny, the more chance is that the employees are residents of a larger number of municipalities. To make it even more complicated, the health insurance contributions are paid to the regio- nal health centers, and pension contributions according to the seat office of the company. Payment of wage taxes and contributions is a nightmare for businesses, repeating itself month by month, even when they have the funds for payment. According to the analysis of Foundation for the Advancement of Econo- mics (FREN) which used the Standard Cost Model, the distribution of taxes and contri- butions to separate accounts costs more than RSD 440 million per year. The research also showed that businesses would save more than RSD 570 million a year if there was a possibi- lity of submitting a joint form for wage taxes and contributions via the Internet. Either way of delayed regulations days615 30 the data on execution of Government’s In the next issue: find out who is most efficient in adopting by-laws and who hits the bottom of the list among the ministries, as well as what by-laws are recorders in delay and who is in charge for that. missing regulations cost us millions of euros The Cinema Law, which was adopted in January 2012, prescribed adoption of four by-laws, including the Regulation on the film industry incentives. In early 2013, these regulations were running late for more than 170 days. The implications of this delay are shown in the analysis of the Serbian Film Commission – the delay in adopting the regulation on encouraging foreign cinematographic works in Serbia led to a situation where our country lost EUR 100 million of direct investments in the past three years! Synergy
    • 31june 2013 | around, hundreds of millions of dinars are gone with the wind each year, whether there is a crisis or not. If a bottle is full – it spills over... These are the losses on the side of the busine- sses, but what about the municipalities, especi- ally the poorest ones? How is the system of wage tax collection affecting them? The system of wage tax collection in Serbia is regressive towards the local governments. Regressive tax is an expression used by tax experts when they want to explain (or con- ceal) that the poorest taxpayers, for income tax for example, allocate a higher percent of their income than the rich taxpayers. Modern tax systems strive to be more proportional, when the taxpayers are generally paying equal percentage, or progressive, when those who have more also pay more, not only in absolute amount, but also in percent. The regressive systems are informally called Super Hick mo- dels, upon the principle „take from the poor and give to the rich“. Due to the complexity of distributing taxes and contributions to separate accounts, impo- sed to business entities, many of them choose shortcuts and pay all taxes to the account of municipality where their seat is located. In this manner they don’t avoid paying taxes, ease the burden to themselves, and probably think they do no harm to anyone. However, this is not the case. Since a large number of employees in whole Serbia work in companies with seats in Belgrade and other large cities, the money that legally belongs to smaller and less developed municipalities ends up in the budget of large cities. Less known fact is that the effects of such misallocation of wage tax income are far more serious than a statistical error. An illustrative example is a research condu- cted by Nikola Altiparmakov, published in Quarterly monitor No. 23. Average loss of small and less developed municipalities in favor of larger cities is as much as 5.2% of total revenue from wage taxes. The losses suffe- red by Leskovac are RSD 21 million, while Majdanpek, a dying city, loses up to 5.8% of wage tax revenues, i.e. almost RSD 4 million. What cannot be seen at a glance is that these losses account for almost 1 whole percent of Majdanpek total revenues, while Trgovište loses as much as 2.7% of total revenue. Has the state done anything to protect the budgets of the poorest municipalities and their citizens? Unfortunately, no. Hundreds of millions of dinars the businesses lose and hundreds of millions of dinars going Ask WHEN payment of wage taxes and contributions killing two birds with one stone Waiting in line Each month, businesses lose on average a little more than 90 minutes for submitting tax forms for wage taxes and contributi- ons. This is if everything goes smoothly. And often it doesn’t. When registering the calculations, Tax Administration employees often make mistakes. Needless to say, any corrections fall at the burden of businesses. In such situations, they need to submit a request for listing of tax cards, pay the listing fee, collect the cards, compare the balance in cards with their own records, and if they spot any discrepancies they need to file a request for harmonization, along with the appropriate documentation. We know What, we are asking When? One of the key mechanisms NALED uses in policy advocacy is the Grey Book of regula- tions – anual publication containing reco- mmendations for cutting the red tape from the perspective of businesses in Serbia. The fifth edition of Grey Book describes a total of 76 administrative problems and offers the same number of concrete solutions. One of them referrs to the problem of complicated procedure for paying wage taxes and contributions (recommendation 1.23 from the Grey Book), which is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Finance and Economy. We all know what needs to be done and who needs to do it. The only question still remaining is WHEN? from poor municipalities to larger cities are the price of transferring the liability of distributing taxes and contributions to separate accounts from the state, which is where this responsibi- lity should be, to business entities. The essence of NALED mission is to do everything in its power to resolve this type of problems that strike both businesses and local governments. Raising awareness on the existence of a pro- blem and appealing on relevant institutions to act responsibly is the beginning of the solution. You may download NALED’s Grey Book of regulations and other recommendation for cutting the red tape on the webpage http:// www.naled-serbia.org/lavirint If you are facing unnecessary administrative obstacles for doing business as well – let us know and ask your WHEN question on the webpage http://www.naled-serbia.org/ ask_when.
    • 32 Synergy The residents who pronounce the name of their city with an accent on the second syllable, will often kindly say “How are you doing Mari” since Vlach he- ritage remains alive through the kept tradition and language, stories about Rusalkas and Go- lubac fly that was taken by the Danube – or so they say. Here you can go on hunting the wolf, stroll around medieval fortress or participate in sailing competitions, and then refresh your- self with an excellent fish-pot with top-quality freshwater fish present in abundance. Municipality of Golubac is located in North- East of Serbia, on the right bank of Danube, Hidden tourist pearl 130 km from Belgrade. The municipal terri- tory covers 36,800 ha, and total population is 12,513 – one third of this number being diaspora. Due to its extremely clean and unpolluted environment (half of its territory belongs to National park Đerdap) Golubac is also an unofficial air spa, and its mining-geolo- gical and ecological potentials make it highly attractive for investments. Golubac was built on a high cliff on the right bank of Danube, at the very beginning of Đerdap gorge, in early 14th century. It is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Serbia. It was under the control of Prince Lazar, Prince Stefan and Prince Đurđ. In late 15th century it was conquered by Turks, in late 17th and early 18th it belonged to the Au- strians and then again to the Turks until 1867. Strategically located, the foundation of the city has an irregular shape with walls that fo- llow the terrain configuration. For the purpose of defense, inside the walls the city is divided into several parts, while nine massive towers connected by the rampart are distributed to defend the city both from the land and water. In lower part of town, at the bank of Danube, there used to be a palace. Upstream, Turks built a low octagonal tower to protect the city from the west side and secure the pier. Today, revitalization of Golubac fortress is a turning point in developing tourism in the municipali- ty – with the support of GIZ/KWD program, EUR 6.5 million were secured from EU funds for this project. local government Danube Bridge – the greatest stimulus for development As a continuation of the Golubac Fortress reconstruction project, there is also a project for constru- cting a bridge to connect the Danube banks in Serbia and Romania. Residents of Braničevo District say the idea of constructing a bridge is excellent, since there are no crossings on the Danube from Smederevo to Kladovo, even though Braničevo District is directly tied to Romania. This would incre- ase the number of tourists and solve the problems of passengers who can rely only on a ferry in Ram to cross over. Industry, trade, tourism, agriculture, employment, small businesses are only some of the areas that would benefit from the construction of Danube bridge, as stated by businesses and municipal leaders in this area, but also from the neighboring country. The bridge will contribute to improvement of infrastructure and faster flow of goods and passengers from both sides of the Danube. The construction of bridge was agreed within cross-border cooperation, and should cost approximately EUR 100 million. Additional development potential in the future includes opening of a port with free trade zone and cargo-transport terminal in the village Usije on the Danube. A place often called “City by the sea”, partly because of the fortress, partly due to the fact that the river is so wide that you cannot see the other shore. A place where Danube is the widest and the narrowest at the same time
    • 33june 2013 | It is not very known that the Government has recently declared Golubac as tourist area. The greatest natural resource is the Danube River with 52 km of its right bank belonging to the municipality. As an international waterway, Corridor VII is part of Rhine-Main-Danube river corridor, the busiest river road in Europe, bringing enormous tourism development opportunities both on the water and the coast. This is the municipality’s biggest comparative advantage. In this area, Danube – the only remaining sea in Serbia as people often call it, is both the widest and narrowest in its flow. In Golubac itself it is 6.5 km wide (Đerdap La- ke), while going down from Golubac fortress it’s reduced to several hundred meters. Across the Danube, on the Romanian side, one can see the slopes of Carpathian Mountains with beautiful scenery and a number of caves. On the Serbian side, the slopes of Homoljske mo- untains rise above Danube (with the altitude of up to 700 m) hiding the still unexplored be- auty and secret of Vlach rituals and customs. Along with Danube, Municipality of Golubac also has many other natural resources for tourism development, such as: - Đerdap gorge, so-called Iron Gate, the largest river gorge in Europe; - National park Đerdap whose position on the river flows from North to Black Sea sets the entire Đerdap zone as the primary tourism zone in Serbia. Here one can find plant species, endemism of the entire Balkan peninsula (Corilus Colurna, Acer Intermedium, Ilex Aquifolium, Celtis Austra- lis etc.), as well as three new animal species (long-eared bat, dormouse and Golubac fly), which opens up opportunities for research and monitoring; - Brnjica River Canyon, with gorges and cliffs going up to 300 m above waterfalls and whirl- pools – because of its untouched nature and beauty, it was declared a Nature reserve. Low share of hotels and restaurants in the local Meet the municipality of Golubac – city fortress on the Danube revenue structure shows that tourism industry in Golubac is not developed enough and huge potential for tourism is mostly under-used. The standing evidence is hotel “Golubački grad” in municipality center with excellent location on the lake, waiting for investors to bring back its former glory. The main problems in further development of tourism are insufficiently developed utility and road infrastructure and lack of investments. Tourists come here both by road and water, so in addition to road infrastru- cture, investments are needed for constructing marinas and other accompanying facilities, and for reconstruction and expansion of hospitality facilities. The municipality has one active quarry owned by AD PIM Beograd, exploiting gravel and sand, so the construction materials industry is developed. An investor from Luxembourg is currently constructing a factory for processing of medicinal plants Planta spontanea, in the village Dobra. There are some other good examples of local develo- pment. Company “Taške” from Braničevo has started the revitalization of former “Bambi” plant in May. With incentives for new jobs it will employ 166 new workers. 45% of Golubac population performs certain types of production, and this potential should be directed towards tourism development. Mostly grown crops are corn, lucerne and wheat; fruits mostly include plum and apple, and the cattle – sheep, pigs and cows. Agricu- lture potential of Golubac lies in the develo- pment of organic production, particularly in the field of medicinal plants, beekeeping and goat keeping. The development of Golubac is slowed down by the lack of cooperatives, organized produ- ction and trade. Because of all this, the munici- pality should focus in the future on attracting investors and countrymen in diaspora who would invest in this area, since Golubac is characterized by many superlatives – the oldest geological history, the longest com- posite valley with three gorges, two canyons and three basins, the largest natural science and archeological museum and park with the highest number of historical monuments from the period of Romanian limes in Europe. Hotel “Golubački grad” in the center of municipality with excellent location on the lake, is searching for investors to bring back its shine and glow
    • 34 Synergy Located on a narrow strip along the Me- diterranean Sea, this seemingly small Middle East country, in spite of modest natural resources and many political tensions in the region, managed to become one of the most relevant economic and technological powers in the world. Only 65 years ago, when it was founded, the country of Israel had only 650,000 inhabitants, and practically non-exi- sting economy. Nowadays, their economy is by far the strongest in the Middle East, ranking 26th in the world, with gross domestic product of $ 31,000 per capita, while the population has been multiplied more than ten times, rea- ching almost 8 million people. There are two key factors that contributed to large success of Israeli economy. One refers to financial assistance from abroad – in addition to German war compensation and support from USA, the key role was played by its strong diaspora. The second, and maybe more important factor are the people – Israel has the most educated workforce in the world, i.e. the largest number of engineers, scientists and doctors per capita, 65% more than the USA. School is obligatory for children from 6 to 16 and free until they are 18, so the percent of literacy is over 97%. Israel is also number one when it comes to investing into research and development relative to their GDP. Therefore it is no wonder that they managed to attract foreign investors in high technologies, such as Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Cisco Systems, Mo- torola (that developed the first mobile phone here!) and become the second Silicone Valley by the concentration of „high-tech“ companies. With the highest number of start-up compa- nies after USA, strong and growing sector of leader in agro-technology Israel as the leader in modern agro-technology and rural development is willing to share its knowledge with Serbia. In cooperation with the Embassy of Israel and other embassies in Serbia, NALED regularly publishes the latest open calls for paid professional development abroad, within its online Database of trainings. Currently, there is an open call for internati- onal training on policies and strategies for the revitalization of rural areas to be held from 2nd to 26th July in Israel. Please find the documentation on NALED online Database of trainings /www.naled-serbia.org/training high technology and services, foreign direct investments of more than $5 billion a year and export worth $ 86 billion, Israeli economy proved to be one of the most resistant to the global economic crisis. The main export products are cut diamonds, electronics, software, medical equipment, communication technology, pharmaceutical products, fruit, chemicals, military technology. Their export mostly goes to North America (38.6%), EU (27.8%) and Asia (18.4%). With relatively modest natural resources, Israel relies on the import of food (only wheat and beef), uncut diamonds, oil and coal, although the country’s dependence on the import of energy resources can be changed with the discovery of large reserves of natural gas on its coast. They also invest a lot into agriculture and agro tech- nology, so Israel is almost self-sustainable in terms of food. Most of the imports come from the EU (41%) followed by Asia and USA. In the previous decade, economic cooperation paRTNeRs fOR sUCCess the country with best educatedthe country with best educatedthe country with best educated iSrael Israel is the number one country by investments into research & development relative to their GDp. Therefore it is no wonder that it managed to attract foreign investors in high technologies, such as Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Cisco Systems, and Motorola and become the second Silicone Valley by the concentration of „high-tech” companies
    • 35june 2013 | israel and Serbia COUNTRY ISRAEL SERBIA Territory 22,145 km² 88,361 km² Population 7,859,300 7,1860,862 GDP (2012) $ 247.9 billion $ 79.65 billion GDP per capita $ 32,200 $10,500 GDP growth rate 2.9 % -0.5 % Unemployment rate 6.3% 25.9% between Serbia and Israel was almost con- stantly growing. Israeli investors invested more than EUR 2 billion into Serbia, mostly in the sector of real estate, but other areas as well. One of the best known investments is the business complex Airport City in Novi Beograd, and lar- ge shopping mall Plaza which has been recently opened in Kragujevac. Other investments involve Strauss Elite that bought Doncafe (today known as Strauss Adriatic), transport company Kavim that successfully privatized four transport companies in Serbia, Precision casting foundry in Ada which is 100% owned by Israeli Bet Shemesh Engines, planning to expand their production capacities. New projects are also planned, including shopping malls in Novi Sad and Subotica while investors are also waiting for the permit for constructing a large residential object at the spot of former Industry of rolling bearings (IKL) in Belgra- de downtown. A good sign is that the first investments in high technology sector are also emerging – for example, Israeli Veriest Ventures Presenting the country  workforce Connects the continents Israel connects three continents – Europe, Asia and Africa and two seas – Mediteranne- an and Red Sea. It borders with Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. The financial center of Israel is Tel Aviv, while Jerusalim is the capital and the largest city.
    • 36 Synergy With more than EUR 1 billion of investments so far, the Israeli companies are the largest foreign investors in the field of real estate property in Serbia. This is without the retail park Aviv Arlon in Pančevo, Plaza shopping center in Kragujevac and retail park Big Cee in Novi Sad. The Israelis invested into transport with Kavim as the second biggest bus operator in Serbia, F&B industry with Strauss Elite that bought Doncafe, production facility LPO in Ada which was privatized by Bet Shemesh Engines, agriculture – with Green Only in Svilajnac and Makhteshim Agan in Subotica. They also have branches and distribution channels in other industries such as medical equipment, telecommuni- cations, cosmetics, textile, pharmaceutical industry – says Yossef Levy, Ambassador of Israel to Serbia. To your knowledge, what do Israeli companies think of conditions for doing business in Serbia? Foreign companies usually complain that the biggest obstacles they are facing when entering the Serbian market refer to bu- reaucracy. The procedures are sometimes very complicated, time-consuming and discouraging for an investor who decided to come to Serbia although there are other countries competing for investments too. During the crisis, Israeli companies have not paRTNeRs fOR sUCCess has opened its office in Belgrade, to hire 100 Serbian engineers. Even though Serbia and Israel have several important agreements on encouraging eco- nomic cooperation, foreign trade exchange is not too high, and Serbia is constantly recording negative trade balance. According to the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, Serbia’s deficit in exchange with Israel reached its highest point in 2009 – USD 42 million. In 2012, the two countries achieved exchange worth USD 44.1 million – USD 15.6 million worth export, and USD 28.5 million imports. The list of most significant products in this period involved parts for turbojet and turbo propeller engines, digital cameras, processed beech wood, gunpowder, cat and dog food, concrete and mortar mixers etc. The largest ex- porters in the previous several years were LPO, Copper mill Sevojno, RTB Bor – Copper pipes factory Majdanpek, Target, Sloboda Čačak, Jasen, Trayal, Simpo, Institut M. Pupin, Milan Blagojević Lučani, Jugohemija, Farmina Pet Foods, Jugodrvo, Merkantex, Sojaprotein etc. From Israel, Serbia mostly imports herbicides, switching devices for telephone and telegraph industry, bromides, fungicides, medicines, stabilizers for rubber and plastics, grit, insecticides, printing inks, irrigation devices etc. Importers were: NIS, Zdravlje Leskovac, Galenika, Hemofarm, Austroterm, Zorka Ša- bac, Magan agrochemicals, Targo Telekom etc. In the field of services, the highest turnover was achieved through realization of investment projects. Companies ‘’Ratko Mitrović’’ and ‘’Dom’’ from Belgrade participated in the con- struction of residential and small commercial buildings in Israel. has opened its office in Belgrade, to hire 100
    • abandoned their activities in Serbia, even though some areas, particularly real estate, have been stagnating. On the contrary – these companies have increased their investments and scope of activities. There is also a certain growth of interest with new companies to invest in Serbia in various industries: high technology, infrastructure, retail, energy and environment protection. What is your usual answer when a company asks you what doing business in Serbia looks like? As the Ambassador, I feel obliged to present them a comprehensive, realistic image, based on facts and figures. Serbia as a business location has a lot of advantages, it is the future economic leader of Western Balkans, with well-educated and cost-effec- tive workforce, a scheme of incentives for certain amount and type of investments, free trade agreement with Russia, as well as suitable arable land, natural water resour- ces and developed food industry. On the other hand, as I already mentioned, there are many obstacles referring to excessive and complicated bureaucracy, unclear laws and regulations that can be interpreted in numerous ways. All of this contributes to uncertainty increasing the risk for inve- sting. Another big obstacle is the lack of regulations on restitution /denationalizati- on which makes the whole issue regarding land ownership unclear. For this reason, I congratulate Serbian authorities on the legislative initiative to regulate the issue of ownership. I also expect to see conti- nuation of legislation reforms and further progress in simplifying the procedures foreign investors face. In your opinion, how can we improve the economic cooperation between our two countries? The level of trade worth USD 44 million in 2012 is not sufficient, and there is also a large gap that should be filled bearing in mind the potential that is currently underused. This is a challenge for both countries. Israel is very strong in the field of agriculture technologies, while Serbia is rich in fertile land, where the yields could be significantly increased with the use of the latest agriculture solutions Israel has to offer. Serbia has a very good food industry producing jams, juices, brandy, mineral wa- ter, and specialties such as ajvar (chutney), excellent dairy products or pickled cabbage that could definitely find their way to the shelves of Israeli retail chains. Another area of cooperation that is yet you have a lot of advantages, but complicated bureaucracy as well In spite of the crisis, Israeli companies have not abandoned their activities in Serbia, and there is even a certain growth of interest among new companies to invest in high technology, infrastructure, retail, energy and environment protection to come is clean technology and water technology, waste and wastewater treat- ment as well as alternative energy sources, especially solar where Israel is the leader in technological solutions. Israeli companies can offer their vast experience and skills in application of their solutions in Serbia. Relations between the Governments and ministries are very good, but we should make higher efforts to connect our busine- sses and create a platform for real business pairing, that would lead to concrete, mea- surable results, for the mutual benefit. Yossef Levy, Ambassador of Israel to Serbia Support to naleD initiative I wish to praise NALED initiative „Ambassadorial teams“, supported by our Embassy, where we are joining the forces with the city of Subotica and company Tigar from Pirot – in a joint effort to promote this city and attract Israeli investors to Serbia. Serbia as a business location has a lot of advantages: educated and cost-effective workforce, investment incentives, free trade agreements… Serbia as a business 37june 2013 |
    • 38 Synergy In late 2012, with the support of USAID Business Enabling Project, NALED designed the first objective indicator of the regulatory environment for doing business in our country named Regulatory Index of Serbia (RIS). RIS is a quantitative, summary indicator for evaluating the tran- sparency of legislation process, quality and cost of law implementation, efficiency in law enforcement and removing administrative obstacles for doing business. The Index consists of six components which are based on 15 indicators. Each component describes one segment of the regulatory pro- cess: resolving regulatory issues, promptness in law enforcement, quality and transparen- cy in drafting regulations, regulatory burden to businesses and information availability. The value of Regulatory Index for 2012 was 31.7 out of 100 points (maximum). Such low value of RIS shows that regard-less of high legislative activity in the previous ye- ars, the quality of regulations and the manner of their adoption and implementation is still a stumbling stone for businesses in Serbia. As often cited, businesses, need stable policy (without sudden shifts in legal solutions), greater legal certainty (consistent application of laws), cheaper and more efficient admini- stration and more transparent communicati- on with the state administration. Comparing different indicators of RIS, it can be concluded that the implementation of the law is the most problematic point of legislation process in Serbia. The only satisfactory aspect of regulatory environment in 2012 was the availability of information, primarily due to the quality of electronic information (website). But even within this component one of the indicators is terribly low: not one ministry, and only one out of 10 regulatory bodies answered to an inquiry sent by a regular citizen. The analysis also showed that administrative fees on doing business are still extremely Low quality of regulations as a large obstacle for businesses Comparing different indicators of RIS, it can be concluded that law implementation is the most problematic point of legislation process in Serbia USAID Business Enabling Project USAID Business Enabling Project (BEP) is a five-year initiative aiming to raise the competitiveness of the domestic economy and private sector in coopera- tion with the Government of Serbia. The project provides technical and financial assistance for improving the regulatory environment, maintaining macroecono- mic stability and further development of financial market in Serbia. Along with RIS, USAID BEP also supported several key initiatives of NALED, such as the campaign Ask WHEN, Grey Book, Study on para-fiscal charge partners for success Presenting the project - Regulatory Index of Serbia (RIS) high; the laws are not well analyzed before they are proposed for adoption, while the lawmakers often implement urgent proce- dures for law adoption. Even though public debates were organized for one third of the laws, the effects of these debates were not visible, so the businesses rarely choose to participate in public debates.
    • NALED members Companies AD Rudnik www.contango.rs Law Office Kosić www.kosiclaw.co.rs Airport Beograd www.beg.aero Asseco SEE www.asseco-see.com Ball Packaging www.ball-europe.com Bambi Banat www.bambi.rs Banca Intesa www.bancaintesabeograd.com Beohemija Inhem www.beohemija.com CIM Group www.cimgrupa.eu Comtrade www.comtradegroup.com Coca Cola Hellenic www.coca-colahellenic.rs Continental Wind Serbia www.continentalwind.rs Deloitte www.deloitte.com Delta Agrar www.deltaagrar.rs Delta Generali insurance www.deltagenerali.rs Delta Real Estate www.deltarealestate.rs DHL www.dhl.rs EC Group www.hd-ecg.com Ecovis Confidas www.ecovis.com Energoprojekt www.energoprojekt.rs Erste bank Novi Sad www.erstebank.rs Eurobank EFG www.eurobank.rs Gi Group www.gigroup.rs Gomex www.gomex.rs Grant Thornton www.gt.co.rs Grupa Zastava vozila www.zastavakvalitet.com Halifax Consulting www.halifaxconsulting.com Holcim www.holcim.rs Hemofarm www.hemofarm.rs Hotel Hyatt www.belgrade.regency.hyatt.com Hypo Alpe-Adria-Bank www.hypo-alpe-adria.rs Imlek www.imlek.rs Industrijske nekretnine www.industrijskenekretnine.rs ITM www.itm.rs Ivančić i sinovi www.ivancic.com JTI www.jti.com Jubmes Bank www.jubmes.rs Jugo/impex www.ereciklaza.com Karanović & Nikolić Law Office www. karanovic-nikolic.com Knjaz Miloš www.knjaz.co.rs Komercijalna Banka www.kombank.com Konsing group www.konsing.com Luka Beograd www.lukabeograd.com Media Center www.mc.rs MSD www.merck.com Messer Tehnogas www.messergroup.com Microsoft www.microsoft.com/sr-latn/rs/ Nimax www.nimax.rs Novi Sad Fair www.sajam.net OMV www.omv.co.rs Pejak Handel www.pejak-handel.net Petite Geneve Petrović www.petitegeneve.com PFB www.pfb.rs Philip Morris Operations www.pmi.com Phoenix Pharma www.phoenixpharma.rs Porr Werner Weber www.porr.rs PricewaterhouseCoopers www.pwc.rs Privredna Banka Beograd www.pbb-banka.com ProCredit Bank www.procreditbank.rs PTT Srbija www.ptt.rs Represent Communications www.represent.rs SAGA www.saga.rs Sava Osiguranje www.sava-osiguranje.rs Schneider Electric www.schneider-electric.rs SGS www.sgs.com Siemens www.siemens.rs Soja protein www.sojaprotein.rs Stefkom www.stefkom.rs Telekom www.telekom.rs Telenor www.telenor.rs Tigar www.tigar.com Titan Cementara Kosjerić www.titan.rs TPA Horwath www.tpa-horwath.coom Urbis Design www.urbisinc.com Belgrade Wholesale Market www.veletrznica.co.rs Copper Mill Sevojno www.coppersev.com VIP mobile www.vipmobile.rs Zdravlje Actavis www.actavis.rs CITIES AND MUNICIPALITIES City of Belgrade www.beograd.rs City of Čačak www.cacak.org.rs City of Kragujevac www.kragujevac.rs City of Kraljevo www.kraljevo.org City of Kruševac www.krusevac.rs City of Leskovac www.gradleskovac.org City of Loznica www.loznica.rs City of Niš www.ni.rs City of Novi Sad www.novisad.rs City of Pančevo www.pancevo.rs City of Požarevac www.pozarevac.rs City of Sombor www.sombor.rs City of Sremska Mitrovica www.sremskamitrovica.org.rs City of Subotica www.subotica.rs City of Šabac www.sabac.org City of Užice www.graduzice.org City of Valjevo www.valjevo.org.rs City of Vranje www.vranje.org.rs City of Zaječar www.zajecar.info City of Zrenjanin www.zrenjanin.org.rs Municipality of Aleksinac www.aleksinac.org Municipality of Alibunar www.alibunar.rs Municipality of Apatin www.soapatin.org Municipality of Aranđelovac www.so-arandjelovac.com Municipality of Arilje www.arilje.org.rs Municipality of Bač www.bac.rs Municipality of Bačka Topola www.novibeograd.rs Municipality of Bačka Palanka www.backapalanka.rs Municipality of Bečej www.becej.co.rs Municipality of Bela Palanka www.belapalanka.org.rs Municipality of Boljevac www.boljevac.org.rs Municipality of Bor www.opstinabor.rs Municipality of Bujanovac www.bujanovacinfo.org Municipality of Ćuprija www.cuprija.rs Municipality of Dimitrovgrad www.dimitrovgrad.rs Municipality of Golubac www.golubac.org.rs Municipality of Gornji Milanovac www.gornjimilanovac.rs Municipality of Inđija www.indjija.net Municipality of Ivanjica www.ivanjica.rs Municipality of Kanjiža www.kanjiza.rs Municipality of Kikinda www.kikinda.rs Municipality of Kladovo www.kladovo.org.rs Municipality of Knjaževac www.knjazevac.rs Municipality of Kosjerić www.kosjeric.rs Municipality of Kovačica www.kovacica.org Municipality of Kovin www.kovin.org.rs Municipality of Kula www.kula.rs Municipality of Lajkovac www.lajkovac.org.rs Municipality of Lapovo www.lapovo.org Municipality of Lazarevac www.so-lazarevac.org.rs Municipality of Mladenovac www.mladenovac.rs Municipality of Negotin www.negotin.rs Municipality of Nova Varoš www.novavaros.rs Municipality of Novi Beograd www.novibeograd.rs Municipality of Novi Bečej www.novibecej.rs Municipality of Obrenovac www.obrenovac.rs Municipality of Odžaci www.odzaci.info Municipality of Osečina www.osecina.com Municipality of Palilula www.palilula.org.rs Municipality of Pećinci www.pecinci.org Municipality of Pirot www.pirot.rs Municipality of Plandište www.plandiste-opstina.rs Municipality of Požega www.pozega.org .rs Municipality of Prokuplje www.prokuplje.org.rs Municipality of Rakovica www.rakovica.rs Municipality of Ražanj www.razanj.org Municipality of Rača www.raca.rs Municipality of Ruma www.ruma.rs Municipality of Senta www.zenta-senta.co.rs Municipality of Stara Pazova www.starapazova.eu Municipality of Svilajnac www.svilajnac.rs Municipality of Šid www.opstinasid.org Municipality of Trstenik www.trstenik.rs Municipality of Tutin www.tutin.rs Municipality of Ub www.opstinaub.org.rs Municipality of V. Gradište www.velikogradiste.org.rs Municipality of Vračar www.vracar.org.rs Municipality of Vrbas www.vrbas.net Municipality of V. Banja www.opstinavrnjackabanja.com Municipality of Vršac www.vrsac.com Municipality of Zvezdara www.zvezdara.com NGOs Teleskop - BCIF www.bcif.org BIRN Serbia www.birn.eu.com Junior Achievement www.ja-serbia.org Ecoist www.ecoist.rs Ethnonetwork www.ethnonetwork.com Foundation Ana i Vlade Divac www.fondacijadivac.org Pexim Foundation www.peximfoundation.org Civic initiatives www.gradjanske.org Group 484 www.grupa484.org.rs Initiatives www.theinitiatives.org Smart Kolektiv www.smartkolektiv.org Association URAN www.uran.rs Association of recyclers of Serbia www.reciklerisrbije.com Association ACES www.aces.rs National Alliance for Local Economic Development is the biggest public- private association in Serbia, gathering more than 170 companies, municipalities and NGOs with the goal to improve to business environment and the quality of life in our country NALED
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