Automotive companies consider opening research and development centers in Serbia

Source: eKapija Tuesday, 13.10.2015. 15:23

(Photo: Vasily Smirnov/
One of the largest European forums of the automotive industry, which brings together leading car makers and suppliers of car parts that are active in central and eastern Europe, will be held in Prague on October 13-14.

Countries that participate in the Central and Eastern Automotive Forum are Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Turkey, Bulgaria and Serbia. The list of speakers includes the representatives of companies Skoda Auto, Magyar Suzuki, PSA Peugeot Citroen CE, General Motors, FCA Fiat Chrysler, BMW Group and others, as well as the representatives of the European Association of Automotive Suppliers and other automotive clusters and associations from these countries. Active participation will also be taken by foreign investment promotion agencies that follow trends and stay up to date with changes in the automotive industry, helping companies search for new production locations.

One of the participants in this forum was the Vojvodina Investment Promotion Fund (VIP Fund) which presented Serbia's experience in the automotive industry, its contribution to the development of the automotive industry of central and eastern Europe, with a special emphasis on human resources.

Biljana Vrzic, assistant director of VIP Fund which very intensively works with foreign companies in this sector, shared SIEPA's information that more than 40 foreign companies operate in the automotive industry in Serbia today, employing about 30,000 workers, and that they have invested over EUR 2 billion so far. According to VIP Fund's statistics, 23 companies operate in Vojvodina, including Bosch, Magna Seating, Cooper Standard, Draexlmaier, Mecaplast, Lames, Norma Group, Contitech, IGB Automotive, Le Belier, etc.

Biljana Vrzic noted that the quality of manpower in the automotive industry in Serbia is what gives it an additional value in addition to low costs.

- Although Serbia is still classified as a country with low costs of production and manpower, which is definitely an advantage, the quality of human resources is increasingly insisted on. This makes it possible for automotive companies to start thinking about moving production to Serbia as well as opening research and development centers where our engineers could develop their new products - said Vrzic.

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