Thanks to its strategic geographical position, which makes it the heart of the Balkans, Serbia is the crossroads of freight transport from Eastern Europe and Asia to the countries of northern and western Europe, but also vice versa.

Serbia is not actually a member of the EU, but there are many agreements in place between the EU and the former Republic of Yugoslavia, as well as with the individual states, whether members of the EU or not. These include agreements with Turkey and Russia, which both offer customs-free trade opportunities.

There are two free zones: in Novi Sad and in Subotica.

All companies must be registered with the Serbian Business Registers Agency, established in 2005. The registration times for a company are reduced and, if carried out directly in Serbian territory, should take about 7 days. However, practice and remote start-up show that slightly longer timings are required. With regard to taxes, the cost is always below 500 euros.

In Serbia, it is possible to set up different types of businesses, firms and/or companies similar to those in Italy. In detail:

  • In the name of a person (abbr PR.);
  • General partnership (abbr o.d.);
  • Limited partnership (abbr k.d.);
  • Limited liability company (abbr. d.o.o.);
  • Joint-stock company (abbr a.d.).

In the name of a person (PR.): it is the physical person who exercises the business activity in an individual way in order to obtain an economic return. Through the obligations entered into, the entrepreneur is personally liable with all his/her assets.

General partnership (o.d): is constituted by two or more individuals wishing to carry out an economic activity under a common denomination. Through the corporate obligations entered into, the company is liable with its assets and the partners are jointly and severally liable without limitations.

Simple limited partnership (k.d): it differs from the general partnership through the presence of at least one partner (active partner) who is liable for company obligations, and at least one partner (limited partner) who is liable to the extent of the value of the contribution only. The company as such will be liable with its assets.

Limited liability company (LLC / d.o.o.): for corporate obligations only the company is liable with its assets; it can be constituted by a maximum of 50 partners, and a capital of 8 euros is sufficient for its establishment.

The joint-stock company (A.D. - Akcionarsko Drustvo), which corresponds to the Italian S.p.A., is a fairly widely used corporate form. The new Commercial Companies Act (Law 125/04 of 22 November 2004) envisages two distinct forms of joint-stock companies, one with "open" capital and one with "closed" capital. The main difference between the two lies in the fact that the former is listed on the stock exchange. The minimum share capital for the creation of an "open" S.p.A. is 25,000 euros, while for a "closed" S.p.A. it is 10,000 euros and it cannot have more than 100 partners. Joint-stock companies with "closed" capital are those in which share capital is not subject to public subscription, while those with "open" capital go through the public subscription of shares.

Joint-stock companies in the banking and insurance sector have higher minimum capital limits: 10 million euros for banks, between 1 and 4.5 million euros for insurance companies (varying depending on the branch of insurance).

SERBIA

Serbia Flag
Average start-up times

7-10 days

Availability of pre-established (ready-made) companies Yes
Accounting Annual
Secretary No
Nominee Shareholder Yes
Nominee Director Yes
Average taxation

All companies operating in Serbia (under Serbian and foreign law) are required to pay 10% of income generated as tax, while on other types of income (capital gains, royalties, leases) the rate is 20%.

Published information about the company's directors

The names of directors and shareholders appear in the Public Register

Accounting obligations Annual
Legislation and controls

The institution responsible for the establishment of companies is the Business Register Agency

Confidentiality Bearer shares are not permitted
Time Zone UTC+1
Currency Serbian dinar
Risk indicators Average political risk: 47%
  • Expropriation and breaches of contract: 52%
  • Risk of war and civil unrest: 38%
  • Transfer of capital and convertibility: 50%
Average credit risk: 58%
  • Failure to pay by sovereign counterpart: 55%
  • Failure to pay by bank counterpart: 60%
  • Failure to pay by corporate counterpart: 60%
GDP growth 2,8%