The Cities of Pancevo and Banja Luka are the new winners of the regional certificate for favorable business environment (BFC), which was delivered them on Tuesday, at the Adriatic region in Neum.
Thus, the number of towns and municipalities from Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Macedonia which have BFC certificate, reached 12. Pancevo and Banja Luka joined "the club" of favorable investment destinations of SEE - Bjelovar, Ivanac, Sanski Most, Prijedoru, Ruma, Pirot, Stara Pazova, Leskovac, Veles and Strumica.
The mayor of Pancevo, Pavle Radanov says certification lasted for 11 months, and the City pf Pancevo worked diligently to standardize servkces which local self-governance provides both to citizens and future potential investors.
He reminded that it is known that Pancevo has always been an important industrial center and that it is necessary to continue with the process of industrialization of the town at the Tamis.
(Pavle Radanov, speaking)
- Until 1,5 years ago, we did not where to accept foreign investors, Radanov outlined, who hopes standardization of services and certification will contribute to attracting new investors.
Through certification process to new knowledge in municipality
The mayor of Banjaluka, Slobodan Gavranovic, said for a few years, Banja Luka has been working on reforming city administration and revision of procedures to create favorable business environment for business investments in the town.
- We need faster economic development, it is the essence of our problems. We need every new vacancy and therefore this battle for us in local administration is the most important- Gavranovic said and added that in the organizational sense, there has been changes in city administration, local agencies and institutions which deal with economic halt issue, new measures of financial support have been implemented, Guarantee Fund was set up within the Developmental Agency, etc.
One of the examples of local self-governance in Serbia which successfully passed NALED local certification since 2010, is Sremska Mitrovica as well which, according to the mayor, Branislav Nedimovic, from "economic cataclysm", in a few years reached to 16 foreign investors in its territory which employ more than 4.000 people in production.
Nedimovic then said that in 2003, in only a few months, 6.000 to 7.000 people in Sremska Mitrovica lost their jobs.
Nedimovic added that thanks to certification and diligence, "Financial Times" marked Sremska Mitrovica as a local self-governance in top 10 for investing from the aspect of an investor’s cost.
President of the Managing Board at the National Alliance for Regional Economic Development (NALED) Vladan Atanasijevic reminded that NALED in 2007 started BFC, within which more than 20 towns in Serbia was certified. He also said that in 2012, regional program was made which comprised Macedonia, BiH, Croatia and Serbia.
The certification program provides municipalities with clear guidelines on how to create good business environment. In order to obtain certificate as a stamp of quality, it takes to comply with 12 criteria including adoption of the local development strategy, set up of the office for local economic development and economic council, implementation of efficient procedures for permits issuance, provision of location databases, work force and transparent policy of fees and incentives, etc.
There is a great interest for the process of certification. Apart from 12 certified local self-governances, at the moment, process of certification for more than 50 towns from four countries. Representatives of local self-governances agreed that BFC program significantly improved the operations of administration and increased attractiveness for investors. At the congress, it was communicated that BFC SEE program is open to include new countries and partner organizations.