Serbian industry has a lot of work to do in the field of digitalization

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The digital transformation of the economy is largely underway, and in Serbia the greatest interest in digitalization of governments is in sectors such as trade, tourism and catering, while the process is complex in the metal industry and agriculture, said today the President of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce Marko Cadez.

Speaking at the online gathering “Digitalization in Industry”, organized by the German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce (AHK), Cadez said that Serbian industry has a lot of work to do in the field of digitalization.

He presented data that only 12.6 percent of companies in Serbia from the processing sector have introduced industrial robot technologies, that 31.6 percent have introduced computer technologies supported by production planning and management, and that only 2.8 percent of companies from the processing sector apply nanotechnologies in production processes.

He emphasizes that the digital transformation has started a long time ago and that there is no longer any segment that has not been affected, from bakeries to the largest industrial corporations like Siemens.

“There is no job or business that you can imagine without thinking about the transformation of production processes, sales, marketing and everything that makes up your business,” said Cadez.

He points out that PKS sees the digitalization of the industry as the biggest challenge, which is why three years ago, with the support of GIZ, AHK and other companies, it founded the Center for Digital Transformation.

“In this way, we have, in a way, become a hub for the digital transformation of small and medium enterprises,” said Cadez.

First, he says, a project was started that trained those interested in digital consultants, who later provided their services to companies.

Cadez adds that the project has proven to be a very important segment in working with companies that have not had the opportunity to come up with IT solutions so far.

He points out that the Center for Digital Transformation and the Ministry of Economy have recognized him as a partner in the implementation of measures to improve the digitalization of the manufacturing industry.

“That is very important to us, because in that way, our members and companies can influence some government decisions and give suggestions on how the economy can be helped,” said Cadez.

Currently, he says, PKS, in cooperation with GIZ, is working on a portal for the exchange of knowledge bases, which, he explains, will enable small and medium-sized companies in Serbia to quickly implement IT solutions in their companies.

He also adds that they are working with GIZ on the establishment of the Digital Academy, which will be intended for owners and directors of small and medium enterprises.

“It is also interesting that PKS has been given an important role within the Eurochamber to lead the digital network of the Eurochamber and to work on the development of the Digital Academy of that chamber,” said Cadez.

He points out that there are good examples of factories in Serbia that use Industry 4.0, but that the domestic industry still has a lot of work to do in that direction.

On that path, he says, it is important to connect science and economy, as well as the introduction of innovative subjects and dual education in secondary and higher education in order to develop a smart workforce in Serbia.

The President of the Board of AHK Serbia and the General Manager of Siemens Serbia and Siemens Mobile, Udo Eichlinger, says that this year the chamber has determined three strategic goals – vocational education and training, digital innovation and the EU green agreement.

“Digitalization has become something normal, we have been living it for a year. Our business has changed due to the pandemic and it was the initiator of this type of communication and way of working,” Eichlinger said, adding that this trend will continue.

He says IT departments in many companies have adapted to the new way of working.

Eichlinger states that German companies are among the important leaders of the fourth industrial revolution and that they are ready to share their knowledge and discuss best practices, RTV reports.