Conference on improvement of economic cooperation between BiH and Russia


[wzslider]By Nevena Šarenac

BiH Chamber of Foreign Commerce and Russian Embassy to BiH have organised today in Sarajevo a conference ‘BiH and Russian Federation- possibilities of improvement of economic cooperation’, in order to improve connections of BiH and Russian companies with the aim of intensifying the economic cooperation.

The conference is the first step in series of planned activities with the aim of acquinting BIH companies with Russian market, and possibilities of establishing better business cooperation.

Ambassador of Russia in BiH Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko said that today’s meeting which will focus on the development of economic relations of BiH and Russia is indeed very important.

He noted that this conference is being held as a part of preparations for the visit of BiH Delegation, headed by BiH minister of foreign commerce and economic relations Mirko Šarović to Russia, which will be realized in late May.

‘We have reasons to be satisfied, because Russian companies, above all energy companies, are already present in BiH’, said the Russian ambassador to journalists before the conference.

As he noted, further effort is needed so that Russian companies would be equally present in FBIH and RS.

‘Also, the legal basis must be improved, and the issue of debts of BiH and Russia must be solved as well, and we must work on signing new agreements, primarily, about investments, avoiding double taxation, and similar’ said Botsan-Kharchenko.

It is expected that participants of today’s conference will send a clear message that economic relations of BiH and Russia will develop without politicking and without political prejudice.

BiH Minister of Foreign Commerce and Economic Relations Mirko Šarović said that state and entity levels of BiH must create conditions and remove obstacles so that the trade exchange between BiH and Russia would improve.

‘Russia is, together with Serbia, Germany and Italy, the most important foreign trade partner of BiH’, noted Šarović.

He warned that the degree of economic cooperation of BiH and Russia does not follow the degree of friendship between two countries, and added that the export from BiH to Russia is around 30 million EUR a year.

Šarović hopes that today’s conference and those organised in the future will contribute to better economic cooperation of BiH and Russia.

‘It is important that BiH recognises sectors which could contribute to better cooperation. I personally, prefer tourism and construction sector’, said Šarović.

BiH is a small country and it cannot satisfy needs of Russian market, so it is important, as Šarović said, to improve regional cooperation so that BIH could enter Russian market jointly with its neighbours.

Vice-president of Chamber of Foreign Commerce of BIH Nemanja Vasić notes that the current foreign trade between BiH and Russia is insignificant in comparison to possibilities, and notes that it was possible due to direct contacts of BiH and Russian companies, without institutional support.

‘I hope that today’s meeting will be the new beginning, because Chamber of Foreign Commerce of BiH and Russia will be heavily included in the process as well as Ministry of Foreign Commerce and Economic Relations of BiH and other institutions, and Russian Embassy to BIH, all with the aim of improving economic cooperation’ said Vasić.

He noted that analysis show that for BiH, Turkish and Russian markets are the most important one, and that there is a lot of space for improving the economic cooperation with those countries.

‘Our goal is to enable duty-free export from BiH to Russia and I do hope that this conference will contribute to that. In the first phase, we’ll try to make an agreement about reducing the waiting time and number of documents needed for export. Of course, we’ll try to get the quota for duty-free export of certain goods from BiH to Russia’, said Vasić.







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