Register a company in the Serbian Free Economic Zone (FEZ) to get VAT and customs benefits! The service is of particular interest to manufacturing companies, as well as businesses engaged in the re-export of goods.
Free Economic Zones in Serbia
Fifteen free economic zones have been established in Serbia. These are physically fenced and specially designated parts of the Republika Srpska with special infrastructure in their territory to help you carry out various business activities, including production and servicing.
In 2020 alone, the annual turnover of Serbia’s FEZs reached 4 billion euros. According to the Serbian Chamber of Industry, there are more than 215 international companies operating in these zones with a total number of employees exceeding 40,000. The export growth in FEZs has continued in recent years. In 2020, the value of manufactured products amounted to 2.2 billion euros, and exports amounted to 2 billion euros.
According to the new rating of the magazine fDi, the free zone of the city of Pirot was recognized as the best in Europe and the third one in the world in 2018.
A complete list of Serbia’s free economic zones:
- Novi Sad
- FAS FZ Kragujevac
- Šumadija (a new free economic zone)
What Types of Activities Can Be Carried Out in the Territory of the Serbian FEZs?
You can engage in any commercial and industrial activities in the territory of FEZs:
- storage of goods
- wrapping of goods
- conducting banking activities
Who Benefits from Opening Companies in Serbian FEZs?
Both local residents and foreign citizens can register a company in Serbia in the FEZ territory. Income received in the FEZ territory can be withdrawn to any country (Serbia, Nevis or China) without additional permits or taxes payable.
Revenues from commercial activities are exempt from VAT (which is 20% in Serbia) in the FEZ territory. Also, the costs of construction materials, electricity, and transportation costs are VAT-exempt. You can also take advantage of an exemption from customs duties if you import raw materials, equipment and construction materials.
If you are planning to import and then re-export goods, you are also exempt from paying duties. If you import goods from FEZs to Serbia, you will have to pay duties as if you were importing from third countries.
The automotive industry, agriculture, textiles and clothing, and construction are of particular interest to investors.
Serbia in general and FEZs in particular are an excellent base for servicing customers from the EU, South-Eastern Europe and the Middle East. Its proximity to the EU makes Serbia an excellent transshipment base for the transport of goods and for the industry that creates goods for the European market.
Under trade agreements, Serbia provides duty-free access to 1.3 billion customers in the EU, the USA and beyond.
In addition, Serbia offers the following advantages:
- a possibility to open a company remotely under a limited power of attorney
- a possibility to quickly open a bank account for a local company remotely
- a possibility to engage a private person or a legal entity as an owner
- a reliable banking system whose participants know how to work with the most important financial and business products
- low costs of business maintenance, utilities and rent
- a possibility to obtain resident status through the business establishment
In 2022, Serbia has tax benefits for IT companies: 3% income tax and reduced taxes for employees.
What Documents are Required to Open a Company in the Serbian Free Zone?
You will need the following documents to register a company in Serbia:
- Information about the company owner:
- individuals will have to provide a certified copy of their passport and proof of residential address
- legal entities will have to provide an original extract from the foreign register with the company name, its registration number, address and names of owners and directors (all documents should not be older than three months)
- you also need information about the director: a certified copy of the passport and proof of residence
- a limited power of attorney to open a company (we will prepare it for you)
- a certified form of specimen signatures for a foreign legal entity (we will provide it and advise you on what to do next)
- a form with certified signatures
- the company’s authorized capital (the minimum amount is 1 euro in Serbia)
- company’s legal address (we will help you find it) – the first three months are free of charge, and then you pay a fee from 100 euros per month
- description of the company’s activities in Serbia
Documents will require translation into Serbian (20 euros per page).
You cannot change anything in the document templates we provide during the process. The texts of forms and applications are created in such a way as to comply with the requirements of the law, and modifications may result in a denial of service in the register. Moreover, you won’t be able to return all the previously collected documents, so you will have to start the entire process from the beginning.
If you want to open a bank account immediately (which is included in the service price), you will need to additionally provide:
- a limited power of attorney to open an account (we will provide an example)
- a certified copy of passport and proof of residential address
- documents about a company registered in Serbia
It should be borne in mind that the requirements of Serbian banks for their customers are becoming more and more stringent in line with global tendencies. It is becoming more and more difficult to open a corporate account for non-resident companies. Despite this, it is realistic to open an account in Serbia if the following conditions are met: careful preparation of a full set of documents and preliminary examination of documents by the bank through the Pre-approval service.
It is also important to understand that the range of services for non-residents available in the bank is narrower than that of a resident. We highly recommend obtaining the resident’s status in Serbia to ensure more comfortable banking conditions. You can do so by establishing a company in Serbia or purchasing real estate.
Since the summer of 2019, Serbia has joined the CRS Standard and has been exchanging banking information.
The Procedure of Opening a Company in the Serbian Free Zone
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and say that you want to open a company in a Serbian FEZ.
Work with a consultant to clarify in which FEZ you are planning to start a business and what additional services you will need.
Pay for the services according to the price list. The cost of setting up a company in Serbia starts from 4500 EUR if you pay a personal visit and from EUR 5,500 if you want to register a company remotely by using a power of attorney. We accept payment by bank transfer, card, Bitcoin, WebMoney, Western Union, and MoneyGram.
If you open a bank account, the documents for the bank are signed in person. You can visit Serbia or we may as well send you the documents by courier: this way, you can sign them and send them back.
Once we open the company, you will have access to it and start business activities.
Setting up a company (along with opening a bank account) takes 1-2 months after receiving a full package of documents and payment from you.
If you have any questions, please send them to the address above.