The EU Integration Centre coordinates activities of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia (CCIS) in the field of European integration for

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2 The EU Integration Centre coordinates activities of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia (CCIS) in the field of European integration for the purpose of representing interests of the Serbian business on its way to the EU membership. In cooperation with experts from various fields from the CCIS, Serbian Chamber System and the CCIS members, the EU Integration Centre seeks to bridge the gap between the decision makers in Belgrade and Brussels and the business community in Serbia. The mission of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia in the process of European integration and the main objective of the EU Integration Centre is to create competitive business environment in Serbia as part of the single European market and to improve capacities of domestic economy in order to achieve maximum positive effects in the process of Serbia s accession to the European Union.

3 Activities Representation of economic interests in the process of Serbia s accession to the EU 1. Monitoring and taking active part in accession negotiations between the Republic of Serbia and the European Union 2. Coordination of the work of the CCIS Expert Team for Monitoring Negotiations (ETMN) of the accession of the Republic of Serbia to the European Union 3. Monitoring implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement and the analysis of effects of its application 4. Participation in the process of national harmonisation with EU acquis 5. Monitoring sectoral and horizontal EU policies 6. Promotion of chamber cooperation at regional and international level through participation in joint projects in the field of European integration 7. Education of business people on issues relevant to the EU regulation and policies Support to companies to take part in eu programmes and funds 1. Providing advisory services, information and education of chamber members for the purpose of tapping into the EU programmes open for participants form Serbia: Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises COSME Programme for the cultural and creative sectors - Creative Europe 2. Support to the CCIS members in finding partners for joint projects 3. Support of activities aimed at easier access to finance through EU programmes and funds Western Balkan Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) Instruments for easier access to finance through EU programmes (Horizon 2020, COSME, etc.) Services related to the eu business environment 1. Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) 2. Providing information at the CCIS website about business operations at the EU market Electronic Guide for Doing Business with the EU Customs Tariffs Database for Importing EU Goods

4 Representation of economic interests in the process of Serbia s accession to the EU 1. Monitoring and participating in accession negotiations between the Republic of Serbia and the European Union The process of Serbia s accession to the European Union brings significant challenges for the Serbian economy and the only way to ensure its sustainability is to mutually adjust the economy and the dynamics of the integration process. The EU Integration Centre monitors and informs domestic businesses about the process of adopting European rules in the Serbian regulations and policies with an aim to prepare Serbian business community for participation at the single EU market. In addition to notifying businesses about changes in the business environment resulting from the EU accession process, the EU Integration Centre also provides support, upon the request of its members, to the business activities that are connected with the European dimension and accession negotiation chapters in which Chamber closely monitors and participates. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia has been building its own capacities in order to prepare for successful representation of interests of the business community in this process. Out of 35 chapters, 29 have direct impact on the Serbian economy and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia has its representatives in 24 negotiating groups. The involvement of the CCIS in negotiating structures has it made possible for the voice of the business to be heard in setting up the pace of the harmonization with the European legislation and policies. The CCIS actively contributes to the drafting of annul Progress Report on Serbia, by providing its findings and comments. The CCIS input is addressed to the EU Delegation to Serbia and the EU Integration Centre coordinates these activities within the CCIS. 2. Coordination of the work of the CCIS Expert Team for Monitoring Negotiations of the accession of the Republic of Serbia to the European Union The CCIS Expert Team for Monitoring Negotiations of the accession of the Republic of Serbia to the European Union is the result of the ten year s work of the CCIS in the field of European integration and it committed representation of economic interests in the process of Serbia s accession to the EU. The Expert team has already gained the reputation of a relevant and representative platform and has been acknowledged by institutional stakeholders in the accession process: European Integration Office, Head of the Negotiating Team, Cabinet of the Minister for EU Integrations, relevant ministries, Goverment agecies and organisations, as well as the civil society. The CCIS Expert Team for Monitoring Negotiations of the accession is based on networking experts from various fields according to the structure of negotiating chapters. Representatives of the Chamber System of Serbia and the CCIS members are involved in the work of the Expert Team. The representatives of the Expert Team also take part in the work of the negotiating groups of the Serbian Government. The EU Integration Centre prepares the Expert Team Activity Report on a monthly basis and it is distributed to all members. 3. Monitoring implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement and the analysis of effects of its application The EU Integration Centre monitors the implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement and takes an active role in the work of different bodies (subcommittees and the EU Serbia Joint Consultative Committee with the European Economic and Social Committee JCC), which have been established for the purpose of monitoring the implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement, and communicate findings and conclusions of importance for activities of CCIS members. The CCIS representatives are involved in the activities of the JCC. The Committee is yet another platform that provides an opportunity to hear the voice of the business sector in the implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agrement and in the process of negotiations on Serbia s accession to the EU.

5 4. Participation in the process of national harmonisation with EU regulations The EU Integration Centre participates in the activities of working groups for the harmonisation of legislations - transposition of EU directives, technical regulations and standards into corresponding national regulations, monitors the process of the enactment of laws in compliance with the National Programme for the Adoption of the Acquis of the EU (NPAA ) and organises training courses, seminars and workshops on bringing into line business operations of CCIS members with the rules and standards of the EU. Within this activity, the EU Integration Centre has launched an initiative What do we negotiate about? in order to present negotiation chapters to the business community and changes that will affect business environment in the Serbia s accession to the EU. 5. Monitoring sectoral and horizontal EU policies The EU Integration Centre deals with the analyses of economic effects of the European integration of Serbia in different sectors. These analyses include sectoral policies, as well as horizontal, i.e. policies with crosscutting impact. The aim of these analyses is to provide information to Serbian businesses about the business environment in Europe and changes that are necessary for the process of harmonisation of domestic policies with EU policies. In the EU Integration Centre, special attention is given to the policies with impact on strategically important sectors (agriculture and industry) but also the ones prioritized in the SAA (competition, consumer protection and state aid). 6. Promotion of chamber cooperation at regional and international levels through participation in joint projects in the field of European integrations The EU Integration Centre cooperates with numerous organisations and institutions at both regional and international levels. Relations with the chambers of commerce in the region are a good indicator of successful regional cooperation in relation not only to the project of Enterprise Europe Network but also to other activities (training courses Chambers in the Process of European Integrations). Employees in the EU Integration Centre are also the members of strategic committees of the EUROCHAMBERS for easier access to finance innovations, good management, Europe 2020 and enlargement and they actively participate in their work. 7. Education of business people in sectoral EU policies Together with partners from Serbia and the EU and in cooperation with the CCIS Education Centre, the EU Integration Centre organises seminars intended for companies in specific sectors of the economy. The main objective of these training courses is to raise the level of competitiveness of the domestic businesses in order to meet competition benchmarks as well as requirements set up by the single EU market. This is at the same time one of three key criteria for the accession of Serbia to the EU. In cooperation with the Department for Technical Assistance and Information Exchange of the European Commission TAIEX that provides short term technical assistance for the harmonisation of domestic legal regulations with the Acquis Communautaire, the EU Integration Centre organises seminars and training courses together with relevant state institutions. Since 2006, more than 40 seminars and workshops have been organised in cooperation with relevant ministries of the Serbian Government and other CCIS organisational units. For more information, see: Other training courses that are organised by the EU Integration Centre in cooperation with relevant institutions concern the following topics: Stabilisation and Accession Agreement, EU regional policies, Enterprise Europe Network, protection of competition, chambers in the process of European integration, funding opportunities in the area of environmental protection and workshops regarding rules and procedures for obtaining state aid in the Republic of Serbia, etc.

6 Support to companies to take part in EU programmes and funds 1. Providing advisory services, information and education of chamber members for the purpose of their involvement in EU programmes that are opened for participants from Serbia The EU Integration Centre provides advisory services and informs companies about current calls for project proposals that are funded by the European Union programmes. The companies from Serbia can apply for EU funds from the following sources: Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020, Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (COSME) and the Programme for funding projects in the field of culture and the creative sector Creative Europe. Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 Together with relevant ministries and regional chambers of commerce and industry, the EU Integration Centre organises info days intended for business people with the idea to strengthen connections between science and economy and thus stimulate small and medium-sized enterprises to use available national and EU funds. The instrument for small and mediumsized enterprises (the SME Instrument) within this Programme provides financial support to innovative projects for SMEs with the aim of entering the international market. This instrument also provides an opportunity to improve research and development potentials for the purpose of obtaining finance through regular market instruments such as bank loans, investments funds, etc. The representative of the EU Integration Centre is also a national contact person for the SME Instrument providing information, avice and application instructions to the CCIS members. In cooperation with the Representative Office of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia in Brussels, the EU Integration Centre organises Internet broadcasts of info days in Brussels where the participants are given an opportunity to familiarise with new information, calls and procedures for the Programme Horizon 2020.

7 Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises COSME For the purpose of promoting the Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (COSME), the EU Integration Centre organises presentations and seminars where business people and representatives of financial institutions have a chance to get to know the terms and conditions for the participation in this Programme. The main aim of the Programme is to improve access to finance for SMEs and access to the market of the European Union. Programme for the cultural and creative sectors Creative Europe The main objective of the Programme Creative Europe is to preserve, develop and promote European culture and linguistic diversity, as well as European cultural heritage. For the purpose of promoting this Programme, the EU Integration Centre organises events where the representatives of the creative industry familiarise themselves with the possibilities for the participation in this Programme. Information about the funds and EU Programmes in which Serbia hast the right to participate, as well as information about open calls for project proposals can be found on the following link As the member of the consultancy mechanism of the SECO (Sectoral Civil Society Organisations), the EU Integration Centre participates in determining national financing priorities for the IPA and other international development assistance in various fields, as well as in monitoring their implementation. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia (EU Integration Centre) is one of the leading institutions in the SECO Consortium dealing with the topic Competitiveness. 2. Support to the CCIS members in finding partners for joint projects The EU Integration Centre, which is in charge of the implementation of the Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) within the Chamber System of Serbia, gives an opportunity to the CCIS members to find partners for joint nomination of project proposals within the Programme Horizon 2020 through the EEN database. The supply and demand database for project partners is given at the EEN website een.ec.europa.eu. The majority of projects financed by the EU are joint projects and involve at least 3 organisations/enterprises from different EU countries or associated members. 3. Support of activities aimed at easier access to finance through EU programmes and funds Western Balkan Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) The EU Integration Centre provides information about the Western Balkan Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) to interested members of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia. The WB EDIF is the EU Programme for the development of companies and for innovations in the Western Balkans and promotes the establishment and development of innovative and high potential companies, as well as the formation of the regional market for venture capital. This Programme is intended for small and medium-sized enterprises with a possibility to get lower cost loans and more favourable terms and conditions. The main objective of this Programme is to improve access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as to establish three complementary support mechanisms for small and medium-sized enterprises: 1) Innovative Enterprises Fund venture capital fund for financing small and medium-sized enterprises in the initial stage of development; 2) Enterprise Development Fund private capital fund that will focus on already established small and medium-sized

8 enterprises with a high growth potential; 3) Loan Portfolio Guarantee that will significantly improve opportunities of small and medium-sized enterprises to access finance, as well as potential reduction of borrowing costs. Instruments for improving access to finance through EU programmes (Horizon 2020, COSME, etc.) The EU programmes such as Horizon 2020 provide, in addition to grants, tools for improving access to finance for specific groups of companies (innovative, small and medium-sized enterprises, etc). The concept of the operation of these instruments is based on risk-sharing investments with financial intermediaries (such as banks and investment funds), which in turn allow easier access to financial products (loans, guarantees, direct investments in equity) through lower prices of loans or investments and/or other terms and conditions (for example, collaterals). The EU Integration Centre actively promotes these programmes primarily towards the of inancial sector with the aim to create better financial opportunities for domestic companies. These activities include information of financial institutions about opportunities that are available in EU programmes, consultations with decision makers in Serbia and the EU, transfer of good practice from other European countries, information of potential users of these products, etc.

9 Services related to the EU business environment 1. Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) The EU Integration Centre is a coordinator of all EEN activities at the level of the Chamber System of Serbia. The EEN is the largest institution network in Europe for the support of companies in cross-border cooperation and innovation of operations through partnership, information and professional assistance. The Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) is a network organisation for the support of small and medium-sized enterprises that has been established and co-financed by the European Union through the Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (COSME). At the moment, the network is comprised of more than 600 organisations different partnership organisations and institutions such as chambers of commerce and industry, agencies for regional development or support to small and medium-sized enterprises, research institutes and universities from 50 countries. The EEN includes all EU member states, Norway, Island, candidate countries for EU accession (Turkey, Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania and Serbia), potential candidate countries for EU accession (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Switzerland, USA, Japan, China, Russia, Chile, Egypt, Israel, South Korea, Armenia and Moldova. The EEN is connected with more than 4,000 experts in the field of entrepreneurship, innovations and transfer of technologies in order to promote competitiveness and innovations at local and European levels and even wider. The services provided by the network are primarily intended for small and medium-sized enterprises. However, they are also available for clusters, professional associations and large companies, research centres, universities, etc. The EEN Serbia services are FREE OF CHARGE and they are fully oriented towards client requirements. The intention is to provide efficient and concrete response to enquires of companies and to follow the concept that there are no wrong doors. It is quite common that the first feedback information is provided within 48 hours to an interested party.

10 The EEN services are carried out by the EEN Serbia Consortium in which the CCIS is a member. The services provided to a company within the EEN are as follows: Assistance in cross-border business operations Easier access to the sources of finance through EU Programmes for research, competitiveness and innovations, as well as through venture capital funds Information about technical regulations and standards of the EU legislation Information about foreign markets, laws, opportunities for the participation in foreign tenders and cross-border business operations in foreign countries, etc. The assistance in cross-border business operations implies connecting enterprises through the EEN database for business cooperation, participation at business meetings and business missions according to the system of pre-scheduled meetings, information about businesses abroad and education related to cross-border operations. In this way, the companies will have a chance to make contacts with potential partners from other countries. The forms of cooperation that are usually implemented are as follows: Finding mediators/distributors/suppliers Franchising Joint ventures Merger or acquisition of shares Selling or buying a company, as a whole or a part thereof Reciprocal production Sub-contracting Transport/Logistics Finding a partner for joint entering third markets In order to become the EEN client in Serbia, interested companies will have to fill in a form in the English language that is available at the website of the EU Integration Centre The profile of the enterprise will be distributed through the EEN and the search is performed by means of key words with the protection of the company s data. The profile will be kept in the business cooperation database for 12 months and at any moment it can be renewed or with drawn and it will be also delivered to target regions/countries that the company has chosen by filling the profile. The first contact between companies will be possible only through members of the network of institutions and the CCIS is obliged to inform companies about the status of their profile. 2. Providing information at the CCIS website about business operations at the EU market Electronic Guide for Doing Business with the EU The Electronic Guide for Doing Business with the EU is the result of the project Transfer of the EU Legislation to Serbia and Montenegro that has been implemented by the CCIS and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Antwerp Waasland (VOKA) in cooperation with: Belgrade Chamber of Commerce, Regional Chamber of Economy Niš and Chamber of Economy of Montenegro. This Guide is a comprehensive roadmap through databases that refer to doing business with the EU and that are available over the Internet. It represents a business support to companies and contains basic rules governing the import of goods into the EU, taxation (VAT and excise) and production by sectors, sales of goods, finding business partners, starting a business in the EU and other business information. The Guide can be downloaded on the link Customs Tariffs Database for Importing EU Goods The Database of Customs Tariffs for importing EU goods provides data on current customs tariffs and other customs and quantitative restrictions in accordance with the Stabilisation and Association Agreement. The Customs Tariffs Database can be found at the link

11 The European Union applies tariff protection for products that are imported to the EU and common customs tariffs are applicable to all EU member states. In accordance with the Stabilisation and Association Agreement the goods originating from Serbia in the EU are entitled to preferential exports to the EU. Information about exporting to the EU can be found at the link In cooperation with the CCIS Business Info Centre, the EU Integration Centre replies on a daily basis to concrete questions of business people that are related to technical regulations, legislation or the very concept of the EU market operations and applications for the EU Programmes independently or by consulting colleagues from the EEN or competent institutions of the Serbian Government. Publications Publications, leaflets and electronic bulletins that are prepared and issued periodically by the EU Integration Centre individually or in cooperation with its partners represent the support for information and education of business people about the EU, important topics and the EU events. The following publications have been issued so far: Economic-Business Guide for Stabilisation and Association Agreement Stabilisation and Association Agreement and Interim Trade Agreement Protection of Competition Policy Private Sector Participation in EU Public Procurement in Serbia 100 Questions and Answers about the EU for Businesses 100 Questions and Answers about the EU for Farmers Leaflet EU Export Helpdesk Your Key for the EU Market Monthly bulletins The CCIS EU Integration Info and the EEN All issued publications can be downloaded at the link On a monthly basis, the EU Integration Centre prepares an Information Bulletin that contains information important for the Serbian economy and that is relevant for European integration. It is distributed to all interested members of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia. If you are interested in receiving these Information Bulletins send us an to

12 The CCIS Representative Office in Brussels The main task of the CCIS Representative Office in Belgium (CCIS RO in Belgium) is to support activities of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia in the process of European integration. The CCIS RO in Belgium cooperates closely with the EU Integration Centre with a view of effective lobbying the interests of the Serbian business community in the process of Serbia s accession to the EU. As the part of the CCIS institutional structure for European integration, the CCIS RO in Belgium participates in numerous activities that are coordinated by the EU Integration Centre: 1. Lobbying the business interests in the process of Serbia s accession to the EU Monitoring activities of European Union s institutions in the fields relevant for the Serbian economy Participating in activities of the Joint Consultative Committee with the European Economic and Social Committee Communicating positions of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia with reference to on-going initiatives at the European level Representing the CCIS in the activities of the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry (EUROCHAMBERS) Presenting Serbian business community and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia by organising events of different scale that get together relevant representatives of the EU and European business community 3. Services related to the EU business environment Organising business and study visits to Brussels with an aim to make connections with the representatives from the EU institutions and to get to know the manner of financing in the EU Organising Internet broadcast of events in Brussels that are of interest for the business community in Serbia (for example, info days for relevant EU programmes and policies) Notifying companies relevant to regulations and policies of the European Union and activities of the European Union s institutions Updating members, through the monthly bulletin, on relevant and current events in the EU capital that are important for the Serbian economy 2. Supporting companies to take part in eu programmes and funds Participating in activities of the programme committee of the Programme Horizon 2020 in the field of small and medium-sized enterprises and access to finance Supporting and finding partners through the network of representative offices of European chambers of commerce and industry in Brussels and other specialised European networks with head offices in Brussels

13 Contact EU Integration Centre Resavska Belgrade T: Representative Office of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia in Brussels WTC I - Blvd. du Roi Albert II 30, Bte. 46 B Brussels, Belgium T: F: + 32 (2) For more information about the Enterprise Europe Network EEN #PKS #EEN

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