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Economic Growth and Trade

Language: English | Serbian


Serbia’s economy is constrained both by the economic crisis in the EU and by critical barriers to growth. Improvements to the business enabling environment are needed to stimulate growth. The private sector needs to improve its ability to compete in international markets, and an increased number of jobs are needed to combat high unemployment, especially in vulnerable communities. USAID works with selected government counterparts, non-governmental organizations, international donors, and other U.S. agencies to advance economic reforms that will contribute to business growth, to strengthen the capacity of municipalities to stimulate local economic development by better meeting the needs of businesses and the market, and to improve the competitiveness of the private sector, especially in economically disadvantaged regions.

Current programs that contribute to Serbia’s overall economic development include:

Business Enabling Project

USAID’s Business Enabling Project (BEP) is a seven-year initiative to help the Government of Serbia (GoS) increase the competitiveness of the Serbian economy and its private sector by streamlining the business enabling environment, improving public financial management, and strengthening financial markets. Project activities are based on priorities identified by the private sector and the GoS. 

For more information, please see: http://www.bep.rs/

Private Sector Development Project

USAID’s Private Sector Development Project (PSD) is a three-year, $4.2 million activity to strengthen private sector firms in 12 municipalities in the economically disadvantaged regions of south and southwest Serbia.  The project is a is direct partnering with the Government of Serbia and is implemented by the government’s Development Agency of Serbia (DAS) through its network of Regional Development Agencies (RDAs). The RDAs will help growth-oriented companies and business clusters increase sales and exports and create jobs.    

For more information please see: ras.gov.rs

Opportunity Bank Serbia

Opportunity Bank Serbia (OBS) is a community bank that provides micro, rural, agro and small- and medium-enterprise (SME) lending to clients that cannot ordinarily access financial services from traditional banks. Clients are typically from semi-urban and rural areas of Serbia. The bank specializes in loans to dual-income cottage industries and the agricultural sector. OBS’ mission is to help create jobs, stimulate small businesses and enable the economic transformation of its clients. With a strategically developed branch network, OBS utilizes field-based client advisors (loan officers) to reach clients in remote areas.

For more information, please see: http://www.obs.rs/en/