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Insights from the annual assembly of the German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce

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At the annual assembly of the members of the German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce, the results of the economic analysis titled “Trade Relations between Serbia and Germany from 2015 to 2022” were presented.

The report’s conclusion highlights Germany as a crucial destination for Serbian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), contributing to the gradual development of Serbia’s own “Mittelstand.” Often described as the heart of the German economy, the Mittelstand comprises predominantly medium-sized firms, accounting for the largest share of the country’s economic production, employing approximately 60% of the workforce, providing vital training, and significantly contributing to corporate tax revenues in Germany.

Milan Grujić, President of the German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce, emphasized the robust trade partnership with Germany, which surpasses any other country globally. He attributed these strong ties to a combination of historical connections, strategic investments, and mutual economic interests, resulting in substantial foreign direct investment and trade relations between Serbia and Germany.

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Grujić noted that the influx of German companies has created an environment in Serbia conducive to domestic manufacturers’ adoption of new and innovative production and management technologies, quality standards, and measures for quality assurance, thus benefiting various industries.

Germany stands out as Serbia’s largest trading partner, with a trade volume almost double that of other countries. Bolstered by significant foreign direct investment from Germany, Serbian exports to Germany grew by 15.8% annually from 2015 to 2022, outpacing import growth, which stood at 11.1% annually. Consequently, Serbia’s trade deficit with Germany decreased from 667 million euros to 385 million euros, nearly closing the balance of payments deficit with Germany, aided by the influx of foreign direct investment.

Dr. Kori Udovički, Founder, Chair of the Board, and Chief Economist of the Center for Advanced Economic Studies (CEVES), presented the study’s findings on trade relations between Serbia and Germany from 2015 to 2022, authored by CEVES. She emphasized that economic ties with Germany are Serbia’s most crucial bilateral relations, strengthening with each passing day.

Udovički highlighted the substantial increase in Serbian exports to Germany, growing by 60% in just two years, with trade between the two countries accounting for 15% of Serbia’s total trade. She attributed this growth to longstanding German investments in Serbia and deeper compatibilities between the two economies.

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Ambassador Anke Konrad affirmed that the study underscores the close trade ties between Germany and Serbia, noting the significant job creation in Serbia and positive impacts on innovative business practices resulting from German investments.

The conference concluded that the mobility sector serves as a cornerstone of trade relations between Serbia and Germany, driven by significant German investments and characterized by a high volume of semi-finished goods exported from Serbia. The mobility sector witnessed a 229% growth from 2015 to 2022, reaching nearly 2.1 billion euros, constituting approximately 50% of Serbia’s exports to Germany.

Moreover, over 19% of total foreign investments in Serbia are allocated to mobility-related industries, with imports from Germany related to the mobility sector comprising around 25% of total imports, primarily consisting of consumer goods (passenger vehicles) and products for further production and subsequent re-export to Germany.

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