The citizens of Serbia are six times more interested in starting their own business compared to last year, the Development Agency of Serbia (DAS) reported today based on the recently closed programs for support to the business sector as part of the Create Life campaign.
More than 1,200 potential entrepreneurs applied for the DAS grants for starting one's own business, whereas, last year, the number of applications was 198.
– This shows that there is increased awareness of entrepreneurship and the benefits of a private business and trust in state institution, trust in the state's orientation towards focused and strategic activities in developing entrepreneurship and the business sector as a whole – Tamara Jurenic, executive director of the DAS, said.
In addition to the IT, creative and innovative activities, this year's Start Up program encompasses services, aside from hospitality and trade. Co-financing production and manufacturing activities has been increased by 20% and amounts to 70%.
Aside from grants, the program entails training courses, preparation of business plans and mentorship in cooperation with 16 regional development agencies in Serbia.
The total value of eight support programs opened by the DAS within the Create Life campaign is around a billion dinars.
A large number of applications pertain to programs of enhancing competitiveness, innovation, foreign market ventures, and the first agreements will be signed in the latter half of June, the DAS announced.
Programs of support to enhancing economic development and promoting export, as well as certain components within the program of competitiveness and support to exporters remain open until the funds are spent.
Last year, the DAS supported more than 1,100 projects with around RSD 900 million through programs of support to micro, small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurs.