Commercial Relations

Commercial Relations

  India-Serbia Commercial Relations  

            In 2016, bilateral trade between India and Serbia amounted to US$ 142.7 million with Indian exports at US$ 133.3 million and imports at US$ 9.4 million. India's top exports and imports are depicted below. Indian companies like TAFE Ltd, Mahindra & Mahindra, Sonalika Tractors, Jain Irrigation, Jet Airways, Embassy Group, Himalaya Herbal, Panacea Biotech, Maharishi Ayurveda, Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals, HiMedia Laboratories, etc. have a presence in Serbia. Though the current trade levels are low, a large potential exists for enhancing trade in the near future.   Recent bilateral trade figures are given below (in US$ Million): 

2.    Visit of Serbian Prime Minister (now President) to India: 

  • Aleksandar Vucic, Prime Minister of Serbia visited India from 9-12 January 2017 to participate in the “Vibrant Gujarat Global Economic Summit 2017” and hold bilateral meetings with Indian leadership and business community. This was the first high level bilateral state visit since 1986 and the two countries have among others singled out agriculture & food-processing industry, ICT, defence, textile, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, tourism, film etc., as sectors of great importance for developing bilateral relations
  • Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic called on Prime Minister Modi and discussed a wide range of issues including bilateral relation which have always remained close and friendly. The two Prime Ministers agreed on the need to promote economic cooperation including in the fields of food production, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, defence industry, health, tourism and IT.  Both the Prime Ministers agreed that contract farming in Serbia for India’s requirement of pulses, soyabean and oil seeds would be mutually beneficial.
  • Prime Minister Vucic later addressed the plenary of the “Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit” and invited Indian investors to come to Serbia and promised to provide the best possible conditions for doing business for Indian companies. He expressed hope that Serbian companies will also find a fertile ground for investment in India and stressed that Serbia will always be a reliable partner of India.
  • Prime Minister Vucic met the Chief Minister of Gujarat Vijay Rupani and stressed the importance of economic cooperation between Serbia and Gujarat, especially in agriculture, food industry, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and the Information Technology sector. Chief Minister Rupani was invited to lead a Gujarat state and business delegation to Serbia. CM, Rupani in his follow up letter to PM Vucic has suggested establishment of a mechanism to take forward the agreed agenda.
  • Prime Minister Vucic also met Pankaj Patel, President of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) to discuss the possibilities of expanding bilateral cooperation especially in the field of tourism and films. 
  • In his meeting with Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis in Mumbai, Prime Minister discussed possibilities of enhancing bilateral trade and investment between Serbia and the state of Maharashtra in the field of agriculture, processing of seeds, technologies for food processing. They also discussed joint companies in the IT sector. Prime Minister Vucic urged more Indian investment in Serbia and mutual promotion of Serbia and India as tourist destinations. The two leaders discussed formation of joint teams to explore possibilities for cooperation between Serbia and Maharashtra. PM Vucic invited Chief Minister Fadnavis to visit Serbia with a business delegation.
  • In Mumbai, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) hosted an exclusive interaction with Mr Aleksandar Vucic, where he reached out to Indian CEOs and discussed on enhancing the economic engagements with a focus on exploring business opportunities in manufacturing, IT, MSMEs and hospitality & Tourism. PM Vucic informed Indian businessmen about the state of Serbian economy and the package of economic reforms to support foreign investors. 
  • Prime Minister took part in the opening ceremony of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
  • During his visit to Mumbai, Prime Minister Vucic also met with Mr Anand Mahindra, President of the Mahindra Group with whom he discussed possibilities of electric scooter production, increased production of tractors and automobiles, agri-machinery, agro processing and development of IT sector in Serbia. Mr. Mahindra noted that Indian investors look for political stability and secure market which Serbia provides. Export of raspberries and other food products from Serbia to India were also discussed. “Club Mahindra” expressed interest in expanding the club’s activities to Serbia, which could bring a large number of Indian tourists to Serbia.
  • During his meetings in India, Prime Minister Vucic invited Indian companies to invest in pharma and healthcare sector in Serbia. Indian companies can make greenfield and brownfield investments in medicine and medical devices to take advantage of custom free access to EU, Russia, Turkey and CIS markets by way of export-oriented investments, contract manufacturing and outsourced small-batch production.
  • Prime Minister Vucic’s meetings in India will lead to expanding two-way trade & investment to boost economic growth, sustainable development, research, innovation and entrepreneurship, and build networks of cooperation for mutual growth and progress. 

3.     India-Serbia Joint Economic Committee: The third meeting of the India-Serbia Joint Economic Committee (JEC) was held through video conferencing on 10th March 2017. The two sides informed each other of the economic situation in their respective countries and discussed the prospects to enhance bilateral economic & trade relations. Both sides agreed to further strengthen and diversify bilateral economic & commercial relations and continue linkages between business associations/trade bodies on either side to promote bilateral trade. The Indian side apprised the Serbian side about the latest economic developments in India and highlighted the flagship projects such as Make in India, Skill India, Digital India, Smart Cities, Swachh Bharat, Start-Up India, etc.  Both sides examined and discussed the status of bilateral economic cooperation, including trade and investment, agriculture & food processing, energy, mining, scientific and technical cooperation, Information Technology & Electronics,  civil aviation, health, pharmaceuticals, tourism, film making, youth affairs & sports and cooperation between private sectors. Ambassador emphasized on the import of wheat, soyabean, oil seeds from Serbia and called for visit of Indian delegation to work out the modalities. The Indian side also expressed interest in procuring copper and gold from Serbia. The two sides expressed readiness to develop and continue their mutual economic cooperation and find ways and means for its further development.  

4.   India-Serbia Business Forum: The first India-Serbia Business Forum was launched in Belgrade on 27th June 2016. Sectors such as ICT, Agriculture, Biotechnology, Textile, Film Making, Pharmaceuticals were identified as having immediate potential for improving bilateral trade. Duty differential for Indian imports and registration procedures for Indian pharma products were cited as some of the hurdles. The second meeting of the India-Serbia Business Forum was organized on 27 February 2017 in the backdrop of visit by Mr Aleksandar Vucic, Prime Minister of Serbia to India in January 2017.   Mrs Narinder Chauhan, Ambassador and Mr Nemanja Stevanovic State Secretary, Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs co-chaired the forum. Ambassador presented the latest developments in India-Serbia relations including historic visit of  H.E. Mr Aleksandar Vucic, Prime Minister of Serbia and ongoing initiatives which are aimed at deepening bilateral economic relations. State Secretary Nemanja Stevanovic underlined that India could assist Serbia’s development in many areas including ICT sector. Mr Zeljko Sertic, Director of the Serbian Development Agency stressed on the need of enhancing bilateral trade and more investments from India. The Forum was attended by Serbian businesspersons from varied sectors, senior Serbian government functionaries, representatives of Indian and Serbian businesses, Serbian Business Chambers and media persons.  The participants discussed opportunities that would enhance bilateral trade and investment. Representatives of Indian TAFE tractors voiced their interest in strategic partnership with Serbian tractor manufacturer IMT which is in the process of privatization. Several other Serbian companies presented their experiences in doing business with India, such as TAL Aviation- representative of Jet Airways, Air Serbia, Schneider Electric DMS, Glotec, Institute of Field and Vegetable Crops, PharMillennium Consulting doo, Glob Metropoliten Tours, Slovo doo, Serbian Chamber of Commerce & Industry etc. 

5.     Cooperation in the field of IT & Electronics: During the bilateral visit of Minister of State (PMO) Dr. Jitendra Singh to Serbia in October 2016, India and Serbia signed MOU on Cooperation in the field of Information Technology & Electronics which aims to establish inter-institutional co-operation as well as encourage cooperation and exchanges between the private entities, capacity building institutions, Governments and other public and private organizations of the two countries.  The two countries will explore cooperation in R&D and Innovation though joint collaborative projects as well as organizing technical exhibitions, workshops, seminars, expert visits & training sessions and using IT as a tool to improve public service delivery i.e. e-learning, e-government services, tele-medicine, e-education, e-authentication, cyber security, internet-governance, e-commerce etc.  The Technical level meeting of the Working Group was held in New Delhi in December 2016 to discuss the work plan for implementation modalities of the MoU and resources to take forward the cooperation in the field of IT & Electronics between the two countries.  Concrete projects will be identified in the forthcoming working group meeting. 

6.   The first Meeting of India-Serbia Joint Commission on Agriculture:  The first meeting of India-Serbia Joint Commission on Agriculture was held on 15th November 2016 through video conferencing. The JCM was co-chaired on the Indian side by Mr Rajesh Kumar Singh, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare and Ms. Milanka Davidovic, Assistant Minister for International Cooperation, Ministry of Agriculture & Environmental Protection of Serbia. Both sides reviewed bilateral ties, and exchanged potential areas of cooperation identified in the bilateral MOU on Agriculture and Allied Sectors signed in March 2009. The Serbian side emphasized its interest to increase exports of fresh, frozen and processed fruits and vegetables to India, while the Indian side expressed interest in exporting tropical fruits, tea and coffee to Serbia, and importing pulses, sunflower and soya from Serbia. Serbian side expressed interested in import of agriculture machinery such as trucks, tractors, combine harvester.  Both sides agreed to prepare an action plan identifying the activities to be undertaken with timeline for implementation and to constitute a sub-committee under the JWG of the MOU, consisting of experts and technical staff, to resolve issues relating to market access and trade.  Ambassador emphasized the need for regular meetings and time bound action plan to boost R&D, trade & investment in agriculture. 

7.   Joint Video Conferencing Session held under India-Serbia Agreement on Scientific and Technological Cooperation 6 December 2016 through video conferencing: The meeting was co-chaired on the Indian side by Dr. Arabinda Mitra, Adviser & Head, International Cooperation, Department of Science & Technology and Prof. Dr. Viktor Nedovic, Assistant Minister, Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Serbia. Both sides agreed to take forward the cooperation under bilateral agreement and discussed possible areas of cooperation, modalities and resources to take forward the cooperation. The following areas were identified as possible sectors for cooperation (i) New materials and Nanotechnology, (ii) Energy and Energy efficiency, (iii) Information and Communication Technologies, (iv) Health and (v) Biotechnology aimed at meeting the needs of food security. It was agreed to hold Joint Workshops for better networking and connectivity. India-Serbia Joint Committee to meet in the first half of 2017 in Serbia to identify and concretize areas of mutual cooperation, negotiate and finalize various modes of cooperation.  Both sides will issue Calls for Proposals in second half of 2017 followed by joint projects in 2018. 

8.   Tourism Promotion: MOU on cooperation in Tourism was signed in 2004. A Tourism Workshop as agreed during the meeting between Serbian Trade, Tourism & Telecommunications Minister and Minister of State (PMO), was held in Belgrade on 13th December 2016. The workshop was attended by tour operators, senior government officials, airlines, media, etc. India Tourism office Frankfurt presented India as a tourist destination to Serbian tour operators and showcased Indian tourism potentials. National Tourism Organization of Serbia expressed interest in enhancing and deepening the interaction between tourism organizations of the two countries. Ms Renata Pindzo, Assistant Minister for Tourism Sector in M/o Trade, Tourism & Telecommunications also addressed the gathering. During the workshop, TAL Aviation presented the business activity of Jet Airways and offered flights across India in cooperation with partner airlines Etihad Airways.  On the sidelines of the workshop and in consultation with all stakeholders it was decided that a familiarization visit of Serbian tour operators to India will be organized to promote group tours to India in view of growing interest. Other measures to promote tourism include: (i)  e-Visa facility extended to Serbia; (ii)  revision of Air Services Agreement to improve air connectivity; (iii) participation in annual Belgrade International Tourism Fair (February);  (iv) outdoor promotion through bus branding and billboards, (v) organization of tour operators workshop alongwith Etihad Airways (2014); (vi)  participation by Serbian tour operator Fly Travel in the GET-INDIA 2015 Seminar; (vii) publication of special supplements, articles etc. The number of Serbians visiting India has shown year on growth of 26% in 2016. 

9.   Some major fiscal and structural reforms undertaken by the Serbian government have resulted in significant improvement in the economic situation and business environment of Serbia. Executive Directors of International Monetary Fund (IMF) have confirmed a positive assessment of the sixth review of precautionary arrangement signed with Serbia in February 2015 worth Euro 1.2 billion, with the assessment that Serbia is noticeably improving its business environment, the economy is continuing to grow, supported by Government efforts to improve public finances, remove structure weaknesses and strengthen the country’s financial sector. Employment in Serbia is increasing, inflation is under control and public debt is starting to drop. The IMF has underlined the reforms of the public administration, better control and management of public spending and the judiciary reform would further boost investor confidence. With completion of the sixth review of the arrangement, Serbia now has Euro 850 million at its disposal for the purpose of currency and market stabilization. Serbia has so far opened 10 chapters for negotiations out of the total of 35 chapters. Mr. Louis Grech, Deputy Prime Minister of Malta stated that enlargement would be high on Malta's agenda during its EU Presidency until mid-2017. The first intergovernmental conference which marked the beginning of formalized negotiations between Serbia and the EU was held on January 21, 2014; on the second one that took place on December 14, 2015, the first two chapters: 32 - on the financial control and 35 - on the normalization of relations with Kosovo – were opened. At the third EU-Serbia Intergovernmental Conference held in Brussels on 18 July 2016, the Republic of Serbia opened negotiating Chapters 23 (judiciary and fundamental rights) and 24 (justice, freedom and security) whereas Chapters 5 (public procurement) and 25 (science and research) were opened at conference on 13th December 2016.  Chapters 29 (customs union) and Chapter 7 (intellectual property) were opened at the 6th intergovernmental conference in Luxembourg on 20 June 2017. The prospect of Serbia's integration into the European Union and a steady growth in foreign direct investment inflows in 2015. Serbia is gradually becoming more and more open to international trade.           

10.     Participation in Serbian fairs: Embassy regularly participated in following local fairs and festivals:

                       i) International Fair of Tourism (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)

                       ii) International Book Fair (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)

                       iii)   International Agriculture Fair (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)

                       iv) Belgrade Fashion Week (Manish Arora) (2014)

                       v) Belgrade Design Week (Satya Sheel) (2014)

                       vi) International Day of Yoga (2015, 2016)

                       vii)  International Ethnic Food & Drinks Fair (2015, 2016)

                       viii) Auteur Film Festival (2014, 2015, 2016)

                       ix) Film Street (2014, 2015, 2016) 

11.     Serbian visits to India: Serbian companies regularly visit India to provide technical support to Indian companies and institutions, particularly in the ICT sector. Some institutional visits include: 

  1. Serbian economic delegation led by Mr Zeljko Sertic, President of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce (PKS) to India for enhancement of bilateral trade and investment. ( Jan 2014)
  2. Delegation from the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia consisting of Prof. Petar Skundric, Chairman and Prof. Goran Radosavljevic, General Secretary participated in the World Petroleum Council (WPC) Meetings held at New Delhi (Oct 2015).
  3. A 2-member team from the Serbian R&D company Sentronis AD were invited by Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) (Nov 2015) for installation and commissioning of 3D magnetic field mapping system purchased by BARC from Sentronis AD.
  4. Representatives of Serbian agro-machinery company FPM Agromehanika doo participated in the Indian Engineering Sourcing Show (IESS 2015) organized by EEPC at Mumbai. (Nov 2015)
  5. An official of Serbian Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection attended the exhibition 'AgriMach India 2015 in New Delhi (Dec 2015). 
  6. Mr Vedran Radovic, Adviser- International Relations, Civil Aviation Directorate of Serbia and Mr Andrija Dakovic, Government Affairs Specialist from Air Serbia visited India  for bilateral negotiation on the revised Air Services Agreement held in New Delhi on 26-27 October 2016.
  7. Dr Vladimir Miklic, Principal Research Fellow, Seed Production, Institute of Field & Vegetable Crops, Novi Sad (NS Seme), Serbia was invited  as an Expert Speaker at GRAM 2016 held in Jaipur on 9-11 November 2016.
  8. Mr Sava Savic, Assistant Minister for ICT Sector in Ministry of Trade, Tourism & Telecommunications accompanied by Ms Nevena Subasic, Head of Group for Africa, Middle East, South Asia & Latin America in Ministry of Trade, Tourism & Telecommunications represented  Serbia at the India Europe29 Business Forum held in New Delhi. (Dec 2016)
  9. The Serbian Chamber of Commerce led a business delegation to India in January to participate in the “Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2017”.  Members of the delegation included representatives from Yugoimport-SDPR, Millennium Team doo, the Institute of Veterinary Medicine of Serbia, Prva Iskra Namenska Baric, Comtrade System Integration doo and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development. (Jan 2017)
  10. General Manager Milan Jovanovic and Depot Manager Jovan Bajkin from the Serbian company ProMedia d.o.o. visited India to explore the possibilities of further expanding the ongoing cooperation with Mumbai HiMedia Laboratories Pvt Ltd.  (Jan 2017)
  11. Slobodanka Simi? Manager of Production & Quality Control Avramovi? and Ms. Vesna Gojkov Manager of GMP Department from the Serbian pharmaceutical company Galenika a.d. visited India to discuss cooperation with Mumbai based Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Feb 2017)
  12. A delegation from RT-RK Computer Based System led by Mr. Strahinja Veselinovic, Vice President, visited Reliance Group in India which is in the process of rolling out a PAN-India Broadband Wireless Access Infrastructure. (Feb 2017)
  13.   Aleksandar Petrovic of University of Belgrade visited under ICCRs Academic Visitors Programme 2016-17. (Feb 2017)
  14. Mr Roman Pavlovic and Mr Sava Jakovljev IT engineers from the Novi Sad based OBLO Living doo (owned by RT-RK Novi Sad) visited Mumbai to discuss cooperation with Relience Jio Infocom Ltd in the field of mobile telecomm wireless networks. (Apr 2017).  Zlatan Velickovic, VP Engineering, OBLO Living doo visited in Jun 2017.

Serbian companies availed of Indian hospitality packages to participate in (i) India Engineering Sourcing Show (IESS); (ii) India International Handwoven Fair (IIHF) (iii) Gujarat International Handloom & Handicraft Meet “GURJARI” (iv) GET INDIA 2015 Seminar (v) Indian Fashion Jewellery & Accessories Show (IFJAS) (vi) INDIASOFT 2016- IT Exhibition and Conference (vii) NASSCOM India Leadership Forum 2016 (viii) Global Exhibition on Services (GES 2016 & 2017), (ix) Vibrant Ceramics Expo & Summit 2016  (x)  India International Leather Fair 2017 (xi) Indian International Handwoven Fair 2017 (xii)  IHGF 2017  (xiii) ISAF 2016 & 2017 (xiv)  IIGF 2017 (xv) Textile India 2017 (Jun-Jul 2017). Serbian companies also participated in  (i) Aero India 2015 (ii)  India Carpet Expo 2016 (iii) Defexpo 2016 (iv) Light India 2016 (v) The Economic Times ACETECH 2016 (x) CPHI and P-MEC India 2016.  Serbian models are in great demand by Indian fashion companies. 

12.     Indian Visits to Serbia: Following Indian entities/companies have visited Serbia 

(a)      ASSOCHAM Delegation comprising of TAFE, Mahindra & Mahindra, Agri Life, Amira Food India Ltd, Akash Exports, Auto International, Basant International Trailer Parts, Basic India Ltd, Bikaji Foods International, Blue Ray, Crum Enterprise Pvt Ltd, Desika Foods, Deegee Dehydration Pvt Ltd, Dzire, Garima Global, Harish Coconut Pvt Ltd, Indian Institute of Plantation Management Bangalore, Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd, Krishna Chemicals & Fertilizers, Oriental Balm & Phs Ltd, Ludhiana Expeller Industries, Pari Basmati Rice, Prathista Industries Ltd, Raghav Exports, Rathour Group, International Tractors Ltd, Sarveshwar Overseas, Sanvardhini Agro Pvt Ltd, SVL International, Shreeji Dehydrate Export, Superkings Manufactures Pvt Ltd, SK Bio Extracts & Applications Pvt Ltd, Tirth Agro Technology Pvt Ltd, Universal Agro Commodities and Vishwa Karma Agriculture Works visited Serbia to participate in 80th International  Agricultural Fair of Novi Sad in May  2013

(b)     CII UK participated in 'Quantum Leap- Serbian Economy moves forward' Conference in Serbia in October 2013.

(c)        Mr. Nikhil Gandhi, Chairman, Pipavav Shipyard Ltd.  visited Serbia in March 2014 to explore the possibilities of India-Serbia cooperation in defence sector.

(d)       Mr Rajiv Wahi, Executive Director of Sonalika visited Serbia in May 2014 for inauguration of the assembly line and showroom in Boljevac.

(e)        Somesh Batra, Vice Chairman, World Trade Centre (WTC) Mumbai visited Serbia in May 2014. Two MOUs were signed between WTC Mumbai and WTC Belgrade and between WTC Mumbai and CCIS Belgrade to improve & expand the trade & economic relations.

(f)         Mr Naveen Aggarwal, Director of Usha Industries visited Serbia in connection with the collaboration with Serbian mining and chemical industry. (Sep 2014)

(g)      C. H. Nadiger, Regional Director, EEPC visited Serbia in Oct 2014 to invite Serbian businesses to participate in India Engineering Sourcing Show (IESS) 2014.

(h)        Designer Satya Sheel visited Serbia in Oct 2014 to participate in Belgrade Design Week on sustainable housing.

(i)        A delegation of RITES Ltd. led by Mr. S. K. Luthra, Executive Director accompanied by Mr P.K.Gupta, GGM visited Serbia in April 2015 to explore possibilities of cooperation with Serbian Railways in its developmental projects.

 (j)        Mr Pradeep Kumar, Vice President - International Operations, Mahindra & Mahindra visited  Belgrade in May 2015 for International Agricultural Fair Novi Sad..  

(k)        Dr Rahul Warke, Director (R&D) of Hi Media Laboratories visited Belgrade to inspect the facilities of ProMedia and discuss cooperation and possibilities for new investments and export to EU in the field of microbiology. (Sept 2016).

(l)         The GMR delegation comprising of Mr Sidharath Kapur, President GMR Airports, Mr. Kameshrao, CEO GADL and  Mr Manomay Rai, Head – Business Development GMR Airports visited Serbia regarding their bid for 25 year concession for Nikola Tesla Belgrade International Airport. (Apr 2017)

(m)       Mr Vishal Acharya of Morbi Ceramics Association (MCA) visited Serbia. Morbi Ceramic cluster participated in South East European Belgrade Building Expo (SEEBBE) 2017 held in Belgrade from 19-23 April 2017.) MCA represented the Indian ceramic industry and invited Serbian companies to take part in VCES 2017 scheduled to be held from 16-19 November 2017 in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.  (Apr 2017)

(n)        Mr Deepak Sharma, Chief Digital Officer, Kotak Mahindra Bank was a Speaker at “xCEEd2017 – Roadmapping The Digitial (r)Evolution” conference on the digitization of financial operations which  was held from 17 to 19 May in Belgrade. (May 2017)

(o)        Mr. S.Kishore, Principal Secretary, Power Department, Government of West Bengal and Mr. Santanu Basu, CMD, WBPDCL visited Serbia regarding possible collaboration in Coal Mining Technology and Clean Coal Technology.(May 2017)

(p)        Mr. Yogesh Joshi, Director, Serum Institute of India Pvt Ltd, Moscow visited Serbia regarding possible cooperation with Torlak Institute. (Jun 2017) 

  1. Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC): More than 140  Serbian nationals have been imparted training under the ITEC Programme since it was extended to Serbia in 2008 in a wide and diverse range of skills and disciplines including IT, ICT, Expenditure Management, Entrepreneurship, WTO, Banking & Finance and Sustainable Development, Rural Development, Renewable Energy, Climate Change,  English proficiency, yoga, etc.  The Serbian institutions have shown a great interest and enthusiasm towards ITEC training courses and feedback received from trainees is very encouraging. ITEC Day was celebrated on 13th February 2017. 
  1. Major Indian investments and present collaboration of Indian & Serbian companies is as follows:

 Embassy Group IT Park: Indian real estate company, Embassy Group from Bangalore, has developed an IT Park in Indija near Belgrade with an initial investment of USD 20 million. The IT Park, first LEED GOLD certified building in the region, has the potential to become an IT hub.

  • Mahindra Tractors: The Serbian company "Agropanonka MTZ Finke" in collaboration with Mahindra & Mahindra has opened an assembly line for Mahindra tractors in Novi Sad. The plan is to annually assemble 1,000 Mahindra tractors for local and regional market.
  • Sonalika Tractors: International Tractors Limited (Sonalika Group) has started assembly line of tractors with Serbian company FPM Agromehanika AD under the brand SOLIS, in the Serbian city of Boljevac.
  • TAFE: Indian company Amalgamations Ltd is the official dealer of TAFE tractors in Serbia and the region. TAFE has bid in the privatization process of Serbian IMT Tractors.
  • Mahindra & Mahindra Motors: Serbian company Agropanonka represents Mahindra & Mahindra and deals with automotive products.
  • HiMedia Laboratories: Discussions are underway for cooperation with Serbian company ProMedia and possibilities for new investments and export to EU in the field of microbiology.
  • Indian company Excel Industries Limited, part of Excel Group with headquarters in UAE have bought manufacturing company Blok Signal doo in Nis for Euro 1 million. The company is manufacturing railway equipment  such as railway posts, light signals, railway signs etc. and waste management equipment, namely garbage containers, truck containers, conveyor belt etc.
  • Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals: Serbian company Medico Uno is the official representative for Ranbaxy Pharma.
  • Panacea Biotec: Serbian company ÚTI d.o.o is the official representative for Panacea Biotec pharmaceutical company on the Serbian market.
  • Himalaya Herbal: Serbian company A-lek is the official representative for Himalaya Herbal range of skincare, dietary and veterinary products on the Serbian market.
  • M/s Mulk Holding, Indian company based in UAE, have invested in aluminium panel manufacturing facility “ Alubond Europe” based in the town of Banatski Karlovac. 
  1. Agreements and implementation: The necessary bilateral instruments to promote trade and investment are already in place namely:
  • Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPA) [2003]. New Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) is under consideration by Indian side.
  • Double Taxation Avoidance Convention (DTAC) [2006]
  • Trade Agreement (MFN status) [2006]
  • Tourism Agreement [2004]
  • Air Services Agreement [2003] - the text of revised Air Services Agreement has been finalized and initialed on 27th October 2016 in New Delhi. Revised agreement is ready for signatures.
  • MOU on Agricultural Cooperation [2009]
  • MOU on Cooperation in Science and Technology [2004]
  • MOU on IT & Electronics [October 2016] 
  1. Potential: The following sectors have the potential for enhancing India-Serbia trade: 

(i)         Retail Medicaments - This formed the largest import segment in Serbia’s foreign trade in 2016 at USD 2.0 billion and was also the biggest segment in India-Serbia bilateral trade. Indian investment in Pharma sector in Serbia is a priority. The government of Serbia is in the process of privatization of major manufacturer, Galenika and few wholesale companies are expected to be available for sale.

(ii)        Metals (Refined copper, wire & ores, aluminum unwrought, iron ores)- Third largest import segment in Serbia’s foreign trade in 2016 at USD 1.8 billion and the second largest segment in India-Serbia bilateral trade. At the third meeting of the India-Serbia JEC, the Indian side made Expression of Interest in procuring recently discovered deposits of copper and gold from Serbia.

(iii)       Manufacturing of Agri Machinery and tractors- Potential demand for tractors in Serbia could be between 5.7 to 8.6 bln Euros. Indian tractors could provide low-cost alternative to tractors currently imported in Serbia.

(iv)      Agro products (coffee, bananas, tobacco and spices)- India is the second largest supplier of coffee to the Serbian market. It appears worthwhile for Indian companies to also consider exporting products such as mangoes, bananas, pineapple, raw tobacco and spices.

(v)        Agro chemicals (Fertilizers, Herbicides, Fungicides)- Agriculture & food processing constitute one of the main segments of the Serbian industry with annual production reaching USD 6.6 billion. Good opportunities exist for export of agro-chemicals.

(vi)       Mobile phones- With SIM penetration of close to 130% (9.16 ml mobile phones) and 64% internet connectivity, Serbian customers are at par with the Western European countries.  The Smartphone penetration amongst Serbian mobile users is around 35%, and constantly rising. Indian manufacturers with competitive prices may have an opportunity to gain market share.   

(vii)      Petrochemicals (Polyethylene & Polypropylene)- Serbia imports large quantities of these petrochemicals annually. 

(viii)     Ayurvedic and herbal personal care products- Local consumers are increasingly looking for products of natural origin for personal care which is India's speciality.  

(ix)       Tanned leather- Serbia has a developed shoemaking and leather furniture Industry and most of the raw leather is imported from other countries.

(x)        Particle wood board- Serbia has a well-developed furniture industry which imports particle wood board.

(xi)       Science &Technology- Serbia is looking for technology transfer in various industry segments and there is potential for  investment in science & innovation.

(xii)      Infrastructure- Investment in infrastructure is a high priority for the Serbian government.  The projects include construction of roads, bridges, railways, water transport infrastructure, air traffic and municipal infrastructure.

(xiii)     Petroleum products- Serbia has a developed petroleum industry which is importing most of the necessary raw materials and equipment. Thus it might offer a great export opportunity for Indian companies. Serbia has sought strategic partner from India in HIP Petrohemija, petrochemical  complex in Pancevo.

(xiv)     Renewable energy- Favorable conditions exist for energy production from almost all types of renewable energy sources in Serbia. The market is open for new investments.

(xv)      Textile: India’s investors could gain an opportunity to shorten response time and delivery time to market’s in Europe and Russia. Opportunity to export raw materials to Serbian manufacturers. Investors would be able to benefit from low labor costs.

(xvi)    Mining - The Serbian government is seeking partnership for large mining enterprises. Serbia’s mines are operated by outdated technology, indicating potential for India’s companies to provide mechanization. Coal reserves are estimated to meet present levels of production for the next 100 years.  Serbia’s electricity production is highly dependent on coal, with around 70% of electricity produced by thermal power plants.

(xvii) Automobile - The Serbian automotive industry accounts for almost 10% of FDI since    2001 largely in the FIAT project in Kragujevac which has helped attract a number of car parts producers to Serbia. The agreement for this joint venture between FIAT and Serbian Government expires on 31st December 2018. In the past there were media speculation that FIAT is looking for an exit strategy and of late, the company has reported drop in sales and lay off of workers. If Fiat Chrysler Automobiles decides to end the arrangement with the Serbian Government in December 2018, this would open up the possibilities for Indian automotive manufacturers looking to produce vehicles for access to EU. 

Other products which could be of interest to Indian exporters are: Polyethylene having a specific gravity of 0,94 or more, Fungicides, Herbicides, Unwrought zinc, Polystyrene, Cotton yarn, Footwear, Monumental or building stone, Sesame seeds, Granite crude or roughly trimmed,  Women's or girls' blouses, suits, shirts, knitted or crocheted, toilet linen and kitchen linen.  

Serbian export products of interest to Indian importers are:  Cigarettes, Raspberries, Apples, Peaches, Maize seeds, Blackberries and mulberries, Sour cherries, Strawberries, Plums, Beer made from malt, Mineral waters,  Acetic acid, Wooden furniture,  Beech wood, Unrefined copper. 

  1. Information on major Trade Fairs in India and Serbia: 

Fairs in Serbia 

  • 8th International Defense Industry Fair: 27-30 June 2017
  • Pack Tech Expo: 13-15 September 2017
  • 25th International IT and Office Equipment Fair: 27-30 September 2017
  • 13th International Energy Fair 4-6 October 2017
  • 42nd International Fair of Medicine 12-14 October 2017
  • 30th International Fair of Cosmetics : 14-15 October 2017
  • 62nd International Belgrade Book Fair: 22-29 October 2017
  • 3rd Information, Communication and Marketing Fair - Media Market: 25-29 Oct 2017
  • 22nd International Exhibition of Jewellery and Watches: 2-5 November 2016
  • 55th International Furniture Fair: 7-12 November 2016
  • 12th Ethnic Food Fair : 22-25 November 2016
  • 40th International Tourism Fair : February 2018
  • International Automotive Fair: February 2018
  • Balkan Textile Fair: March 2018
  • International Fair of Horticulture: April 2018
  • International Fair of Cosmetics : April 2018
  • International Construction Trade Fair: April 2018
  • International Fair of Agriculture, Novi Sad: May 2018
  • International Fair of Technical Achievements: May 2018 

Fairs in India 

  • India Shoes & Accessories Forum 2017: 12-13 April 2017
  • Indian Global Exhibition on Services (GES): 17-20 April 2017
  • Home Expo India: 18-20 Apr 2017
  • India Steel Expo 2017: 20-22 April 2017
  • Great Indian Travel Bazaar: 23-25 April 2017
  • India International Knit Fair: 10-12 May 2017
  • Renewable Energy World India: 17-19 May 2017
  • Organic & Ayurveda Expo: 09-11 Jun 2017
  • Heimtextil India: 20-22 Jun 2017
  • Textile India 2017: 30 June to 02 July 2017
  • India International Garment Fair: 17-19 July 2017
  • India International Yarn Exhibition / Yarnex : 20-22 Jul 2017
  • Woodtech India: 04-06 Aug 2017
  • India International Fashion Jewellery & Accessories Show: 11-14 Aug 2017
  • AgriTech India: 28-30 Aug 2017
  • Annapoorna World of Food: 14-16 September 2017
  • India International Travel Mart New Delhi: 15-17 Sep 2017
  • International Railway Equipment Exhibition: 11-13 October 2017
  • Broadcast India Show 2017: 12-14 October 2017
  • IHGF Delhi Fair: 13-17 October 2017
  • Paperex - The World of Paper: 01-04 November 2017
  • World Food India 2017 : 03-05 November 2017
  • Economic Times Acetech Mumbai: 02-05 November 2017
  • International Mining Exploration, Mineral Processing Technology & Machinery Exhibition: 08-11 November 2017
  • World Tea & Coffee Expo: 16-18 November 2017
  • India International Trade Fair : 14-27 November 2017
  • CPhI India: 28-30 November 2017
  • EIMA Agrimach INDIA: 07-09 December 2017
  • India-Europe 29 Business Forum: December 2017
  • Vibrant Gujarat 2018: January 2018
  • The Auto Expo: 09-14 February 2018
  • Panacea Natural Products Expo India : 07-09 February 2018
  • INDIA IT Show / IndiaSoft: February 2018
  • India International Leather Fair: February 2018
  • India Pharma 2018: February 2018
  • Defexpo India: March 2018
  • Aahar International Food Fair: March 2018


June 2017


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