Doing business in Serbia

Investing and doing business in Serbia

Doing Business in Serbia
As anywhere in the world, business in Serbia follow certain local rules, traditions and regulations, which you have to oblige, if you want to do good in your area of business in Serbia. That goes from business etiquette, such as business cards, good looking clothes etc. to giving away small gifts, to waiting for your accomplice to arrive because of delays in traffic etc. You also need to take into account differences in company size – larger companies are more formal, while smaller ones are more informal. Share trading is not for the faint – hearted, while greenfield investors can expect the most benefits from the state or other companies. You should know the language too, or at least have a translator and a good business advisor.

Doing business in Serbia is the same as it is in the whole of the Balkans area. Business etiquette is the same, which means firm handshakes and business cards are a must, as is a good dress, especially when dealing with large or medium – sized companies. The other thing is dealing with small businesses, where things are a bit more relaxed, there are informal meetings and business etiquette does not need to be followed in a strict manner.

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Businessmen here expect something in return, usually a small gift or something like that. They are also not as punctual as their counterparts in central or western Europe or United States for example, so waiting a few minutes or up to 15 minutes is not something to be afraid of. Also the traffic is horrendous, so the delays are a normal part of lives here. It also depends what type of business you want to do – if you are selling something, then you need to adapt to your buyer´s wishes and vice – versa if the opposite is true, as everywhere else in the world. If you want to start a greenfield investment, then usually everyone, from officials, to managers will bow to you and try to fulfill your wishes, since greenfield investments are the best types of investments, and employ the largest amount of workforce. If you do not plan a greenfield investment, but rather want to buy some shares of the publicly traded company, then be prepared for a lengthy procedure of opening bank accounts, transferring funds, authorizing sales etc. so in that case you should need a good business consultant. To wrap it up, doing business in Serbia is very simple if you are doing business with small companies, but it gets more complicated when dealing with larger or medium – sized companies or buying and selling shares in the stock market, plus you have to take into account local customs (delays, gifts etc.). If you do, then your business in Serbia will surely prosper! Also make sure to have a good business consultant with you! Knowing the language is also a big plus.

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