D&C 60

Page 1

February 2021 | ISSUE No. 60 | Price 350 RSD

01 FEB





World Bank Country Manager for Serbia


Belgrade Diplomatic Residences & Buildings




JORGOVANKA TABAKOVIĆ Governor of the National Bank of Serbia



United Arab Emirates

H.E. MUBARAK SAEED BURSHAID AL DHAHERI Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates

The Worst is Yet to Come?

might not be the worst thing that could happen. That 2021 might have something even more unpleasant in store for us. This sentence of mine was broadcasted in HTV’s Dnevnik 2 at the beginning of the report from the conference. Indeed, we are witnesses that a lot of people around us believe that everything will “go back to as it was” after the vaccination, that 2021 will be like 2019. I don’t want to be the eternal pessimist, but I think that nothing will ever be the same again. The news about the “new strains

of virus” from Brazil, Great Britain and South Africa are disturbing and they are saying that even the “episode” with the pandemic is not over yet. And let’s not even start to talk about its economic and geopolitical consequences. I remember that the headline of my editorial exactly one year ago was “New Roaring ’20?” "The US Ambassador to London Robert Johnson has said that the UK would enter the ‘Roaring Twenties’ after Brexit was delivered. Is the US Ambassador’s optimism applicable to the whole world, or can the Roaring Twenties happen only in the countries that made the former British Empire? What will the Roaring Twenties be like in the rest of Europe? Like they were in Chicago in the 1920s, like in the Weimar Republic in Germany or like in Mussolini’s Italy? How will the Great Gatsby of the 21st century end?", I wrote in January 2020, when the Covid-19 virus just crawled out of the market in Wuhan. “The The Empire on Which the Sun Never Sets (British Empire) has officially left the EU, and the British and the Europeans were faced with a trouble much greater than Brexit. So, it’s better to be prepared for: The worst is yet to come, and not have that happen, than to be surprised again, for the umpteenth time!







World Bank Country Manager for Serbia

Director of the National Employment Service









TANJA BANKOVIĆ Editor in Chief tanja.bankovic@color.rs ILIJA PETROVIĆ INDIGOCHILD Art director indigochild.ilija@gmail.com JOVANA MARKOVIĆ Advertising manager jovana.markovic@color.rs NATAŠA NEŠIĆ Advertising director


DRAGANA RADOVIĆ Advertising manager dragana.radovic@color.rs JELENA RANDJELOVIĆ Advertising manager jelena.randjelovic@color.rs VANJA KOVAČEV PR&Event support Nord Communications vanja.communications @gmail.com

RUŽA VELJOVIĆ Magazine director ruza.ristanovic@color.rs ROBERT ČOBAN Director robert.coban@color.rs




hen we organized the “Svijet u 2021.” conference on December 17 in Zagreb, which was opened by Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, I said in my keynote that if 2020 taught us anything is that we should prepare ourselves – as individuals, families, companies, countries and societies – that what happened to us with the pandemic







2021 WILL BE A FASCINATING YEAR FOR EGYPT ”Color Media Communications” LTD, 21132 Petrovaradin, Štrosmajerova 3 TIN 107871532 Matriculation number 20887303 Phone: +381 21 4897 100 Fax: +381 21 4897 126 Office: Vase Čarapića 3/IV/38, Belgrade Phone: 011 4044 960 CIP - Katalogizacija u publikaciji Biblioteke Matice Srpske, Novi Sad 33 Diplomacy & Commerce / glavni i odgovorni urednik Žikica Milošević, 2016, br. 1 (mart)-.Novi Sad: Color Media Communications, 2016 - , -33cm Mesečno. ISSN 2466-3808 = Diplomacy & Commerce COBISS.SR-ID 303269895

H.E. AMR ALJOWAILY The Ambassador of Egypt










by Daniel Einhäuser




THE CZECH EMBASSY Belgrade Diplomatic Residences & Buildings




Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs

Graphic designer




A CASTLE SAVED BY AN APPLE ON SOFIJA DUNDJERSKI’S HEAD Cultural heritage of Vojvodina by Robert Čoban



Which is The Economist’s Country of the Year? The most-improved country is one where people stood up for democracy n most years most countries improve in various ways. In 2020, however, premature death and economic contraction became the new normal, and most countries aspired only to dodge the worst of it. Inevitably, our shortlist of most-improved countries includes some that merely avoided regressing much. Few people would argue that life in New Zealand was better in 2020 than in 2019. But the virus has been contained. When only 100 cases had been detected, the prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, closed the borders, locked down the country and urged its “team of 5m” (ie, the whole population) to be kind to each other. Only 25 Kiwis have died and life has more or less returned to normal. Rugby stadiums finished the season packed with fans. The amiable Ms Ardern was re-elected with a majority in a country where such things are almost unheard of. Taiwan has done even better, with only seven deaths and a far stronger economic performance. Leave aside whether Taiwan is a country or merely a contender for “de facto self-governing territory of the year”. It kept the virus at bay without closing schools, shops or restaurants, much less imposing lockdowns. Its economy is one of the few expected to have grown in 2020. It also showed courage, refusing to back down despite relentless threats from Beijing. China’s government often says that Taiwan must be reunited with the mainland. It has been sending warships and fighter jets ever closer to the island, ever more often. Yet in January Taiwanese voters spurned a presidential candidate who favoured warmer ties with China and re-elected Tsai Ing-wen, whose government has been sheltering democracy activists from Hong Kong. Taiwan is a constant reminder that Chinese culture is perfectly compatible with liberal democracy. These achievements are impressive. However, the pandem-




THE UNITED STATES DID ALMOST AS BADLY AS BRITAIN, ITALY AND SPAIN IN ITS RESPONSE TO COVID-19, BUT ITS OPERATION WARP SPEED WAS CENTRAL TO BRINGING ABOUT A VACCINE IN RECORD TIME ic is not yet over and to judge a country on its covid-fighting record is to focus on specific forms of good governance when circumstances of geography and genes make comparisons hard. Being an island helps. Some populations may have immunity to coronaviruses. So it is worth considering other candidates. The United States did almost as badly as Britain, Italy and Spain in its response to covid-19, but its Operation Warp Speed was central to bringing about a vaccine in record time. And by rejecting President Donald Trump in November, American voters did their bit to curb the spread of populism—another global scourge. Mr Trump’s efforts to overturn the will of those voters were unprecedented for a sitting president, but the judges he appointed were loyal to the law, not the man who picked

them. Voters in Bolivia, too, restored a measure of normality. After a fraud-tainted election, the overthrow of a socialist president, violent protests and the vengeful, incompetent rule of an interim president, the Andean nation held a peaceful re-run ballot in October and picked a technocrat, Luis Arce.But this year’s prize goes to a country in southern Africa. Democracy and respect for human rights regressed in 80 countries between the start of the pandemic and September, reckons Freedom House, a think-tank. The only place where they improved was Malawi. To appreciate its progress, consider what came before. In 2012 a president died, his death was covered up and his corpse flown to South Africa for “medical treatment”, to buy time so that his

brother could take over. That brother, Peter Mutharika, failed to grab power then but was elected two years later and ran for re-election. The vote-count was rigged with correction fluid on the tally sheets. Foreign observers cynically approved it anyway. Malawians launched mass protests against the “Tipp-Ex election”. Malawian judges turned down suitcases of bribes and annulled it. A fair re-run in June booted out Mr Mutharika and installed the people’s choice, Lazarus Chakwera. Malawi is still poor, but its people are citizens, not subjects. For reviving democracy in an authoritarian region, it is our country of the year. From The Economist, published under licence. The original article, in English, can be found on www.economist.com

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs



by Ruža Veljović

For Serbia it is Crucial to Speed Up the Growth There are still numerous reforms in the business environment (e.g., related to infrastructure, financial sector, labor markets, tax system, etc.) that could help lower the cost of doing business in Serbia and further encourage private investment and employment reforms or of otherwise solid new legislation meant the economy did not get all intended benefits. Where to start? Several local business associations prepare annual reports on implementation bottlenecks, so there are “low-hanging fruit” (e.g., streamlining international payments and collections, improving predictability regarding taxes and parafiscals, etc.) that the government could work on to remove bottlenecks and accelerate investment and business and job opportunities.

STEPHEN NDEGWA World Bank Country Manager for Serbia

erbia’s robust response to the pandemic has shown good results and ensured that the country was among the most resilient economies in Europe” said Mr. Stephen Ndegwa, World Bank Country Manager in an interview for February issue of Diplomacy&Commerce magazine. We also spoke about predictions for this year, in terms of GDP, fiscal stability, implementation of the reforms and cooperation in different areas.


How would you assess Serbia’s results in 2020 in terms of the GDP? — The Serbian government together with the National Bank of Serbia responded fast and robustly to safeguard the economy and citizens from the unprecedent effects of the pandemic and the necessary control measures. The total value of the fiscal support package was close to 13 percent of GDP which significantly helped to avoid a deeper recession and a greater deterioration in living standards. The resulting rise in public debt from 52.9 percent of GDP (end 2019) to an estimated 59.7 percent (end 2020) was not abnormal but bears watching. It is useful to emphasize that we yet again learned that it is important during the good times to build buffers, which could help when a crisis hits. This is exactly what happened in Serbia – over the previous several years Serbia was going through a painful but necessary fiscal adjustment, but in turn it built significant fiscal deposits that were used at the start of the crisis to finance the fiscal stimulus program. Growth last year was supported also by a good agriculture season, and more importantly by a resilient and flexible IT sector which grew


In which areas is it necessary to implement reforms faster for Serbia to recover as soon as possible and continue on the path of faster economic growth? — Serbia dramatically improved its Doing Business rating over the last five years by simplifying and streamlining procedures in several important areas but lags its peers on voice and accountability. Governance and institutional weaknesses are the next frontier to conquer to energize Serbia’s growth. On global rankings such as World Governance Indicators, Corruption Perception Index, Freedom House indicators, etc. Serbia’s ratings have been in decline. Reversing these trends and


SERBIA DRAMATICALLY IMPROVED ITS DOING BUSINESS RATING BY SIMPLIFYING AND STREAMLINING PROCEDURES IN SEVERAL IMPORTANT AREAS, BUT LAGS ITS PEERS ON VOICE AND ACCOUNTABILITY as well. The World Bank (WB) has estimated that Serbia will record a GDP growth of 3.1% this year. What should be the priorities of the Serbian government in 2021? — To speed up growth it is crucial that the government continues an ambitious reform path as outlined last year in the World Bank report “Serbia’s New Growth Agenda”. There are still numerous reforms in the business environment (e.g., related to infrastructure, financial sector, labor markets, tax system,

etc.) that could help lower the cost of doing business in Serbia and further encourage private investment and employment. I would like to emphasize that it is important to ensure a coordinated reforms effort so that all parts of the public sector – ministries, judiciary, utility companies, local governments, etc. move in the same direction and with speed to ensure the proper implementation of new rules and reformed legislation. Often slow or incomplete implementation of adopted

strengthening governance and accountability will be key if Serbia is to achieve and sustain higher growth, incomes, and well-being for all its citizens. Governments that are efficient and effective, that preserve fiscal integrity, and that promote fair, transparent and predictable rules win. I would also emphasize two other strategic areas of reforms. First, further and faster alignment with the EU Acquis and greater energy in advancing accession is good for Serbia in many ways. Sec-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

can Serbia move in that direction without jeopardizing its fiscal stability? — The impact of the pandemic on the economy and citizens is unfortunately lasting much longer and remaining more severe than originally thought. The government is closely monitoring developments and again decided to respond quickly, which is a good thing. We still don’t know details about the future fiscal support program, but we would highlight three global good practices: that it be well-targeted to those most in need, that it be financed by reallocating resources from non-priority activities, and that implementation be transparent and efficient. In this way, the negative impact on the deficit and on public debt could be minimized. It is important to keep an eye on the

ond, the government should pursue with vigour its stated focus on future growth that is also more environment-friendly. The World Bank along with Serbia’s other partners, including the EU, France and Germany, strongly supports Serbia in this “green growth” endeavour. We are encouraged to see that several strategic documents are currently under preparation – including the Climate Change Law – which should create foundations for the green recovery. Early last year, the World Bank announced that it would grant loans to Serbia to improve its business environment. Given the current trends, how far have we come with this plan and what is the plan for 2021? — Relatively modest growth over the previous decade is linked to low productivity and low competitiveness of Serbian enterprises, and these are partially a result of the challenges in the business environment, including high regulatory and administrative costs. To support Serbia’s reform goals, we plan to launch a project on improving business environment this spring, working with the EU and in alignment with our sister institution, the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The work will focus on regulatory simplification, improving capacity for implementation, better access for government-to-business services, and digitalization. Investment is key to the recovery, and we continue to support public investment that promotes growth. On infrastructure, in collaboration with France, we are finalizing a multi-year investment and policy program to modernize Serbia’s railways. Finally, this year we expect to prepare with the government two additional projects to promote the private sector -a competitiveness and jobs project focusing on strengthening capabilities of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and a more strategic approach to investment promotion, and a project to modernize capital markets

TO SUPPORT SERBIA’S REFORM GOALS, WE PLAN TO LAUNCH A PROJECT ON IMPROVING BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT THIS SPRING, WORKING WITH THE EU AND IN ALIGNMENT WITH THE IFC and promote long term finance. And, finally, a project focusing on local infrastructure is under design. Cooperation in the mining segment is also foreseen. What does Serbia need to do to improve energy and make it cleaner? — We are glad to see that mining and energy sector transformation and sustainability are strong government priorities. Serbia’s mining sector’s contribution to GDP and employment remains low, and declining. Over the past five years, the mining sector has contributed 2 percent of GDP. The sector can be a new engine for growth if sector policy, regulations, and administration are modernized (e.g., digitalizing) and especially if the Jadar/lithium-borate sector is well managed to enable Serbia to be the supplier of choice for minerals essential for the low-carbon global economy. If they materialize soon, major projects (e.g., processing lithium-borate or production of batteries)

in the sector could boost export earnings, government revenues, and employment and increase the sector’s contribution to GDP from 2 percent to 4 percent by 2024. At the same time, this is an opportune time for government to renew its energy law, including on renewables, and to resolve in a strategic, well-calibrated and socially and environmentally sustainable way (‘just transition’) the dependence on coal and loss-making operations in the mining sector. We welcome the government’s renewed emphasis and intended action on good environmental management of mining projects. We look forward to partnering with the government to support transformation in mining and ensure benefits for all Serbians. Serbian president has announced a new set of economic aid measures in February. Given that many countries are forced to borrow money to help their economies survive, how

public debt evolution as well as on costs of financing so that risks to the budget are minimized and the gains of fiscal reforms of the last seven years are safeguarded. Is the Serbian health care system sufficiently consolidated enough, and are we ready for a new wave of the epidemic, if it happens, this year? — Serbia has done well in its efforts to control the pandemic through several prevention and epidemiological measures and strengthening the capacity of the health system to provide appropriate care to those infected. Serbia’s vaccination campaign is running according to established priorities and smoothly and at an impressive rate. All this speaks to the strength of the system. The World Bank recognizes all these efforts and is further supporting the health system through an on-going health system strengthening project and a recent 92 million EUR emergency loan supporting the COVID-19 response.

THE WORST CONSEQUENCES OF THE PANDEMIC What do you think are the worst consequences of the pandemic for the global population? — According to Johns Hopkins University, as of end of January more than 103 million people have been infected and 2.2 million people died from COVID-19 worldwide. These numbers rise daily. The catastrophe goes beyond COVID illness. The pandemic strained health systems in countries around the world and those sick from other diseases, unrelated

to COVID-19, have had to defer care. We cannot forget the continuing economic and social costs. Although the global economic output is expected to expand 4 percent in 2021, this remains 5 percent below the pre-pandemic trend. Uncertainty also remains on the impact of the global disruption, including on investment flows, global value chains, trade and tourism. The human capital impact remains uncertain given disruptions in education.



by Tanja Banković

The EIB Continues to Invest in Serbia During my mandate, the EIB invested EUR 3.3 billion in the region, mostly for the transportation sector and small and medium enterprises small and medium enterprises to employ people from vulnerable groups on a long-term basis. In 2021, the EIB will deliver finance for digital and energy infrastructure in Serbia, modernization of transport infrastructure and support to the private sector recovery.


Photo: Boogie

A new package of government assistance to the Serbian economy was announced in mid-February. How would you rate the Serbian government’s general response to the crisis? — Small and medium enterprises in the Western Balkans are very vulnerable to shocks and it was essential to provide them with liquidity and working capital as to maintain employment and businesses. Under Team Europe support, the EIB facilitated new credit lines for the countries in the region under favourable and flexible conditions, in cooperation with the local banks to help local business address their liquidity and investment needs. In a longer-term, increasing resilience of the private sector and creating an ambient for inclusive employment, innovation and women entrepreneurship will be DUBRAVKA NÈGRE EIB

rom 2016 to 2020, Belgrade resident Dubravka Negre held the position of Head of the Regional Office of the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the Western Balkans. During her tenure, she was facilitating investments in numerous projects in the field of education, science, health, justice, entrepreneurship, transport, energy, environment protection, which contributed to the development of Serbia and the region. She spoke for Diplommacy and Commerce magazine about the projects she is most proud of, as well as about her future plans.



IN 2021, THE EIB WILL DELIVER FINANCE FOR DIGITAL AND ENERGY INFRASTRUCTURE IN SERBIA, MODERNIZATION OF TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AND SUPPORT TO THE PRIVATE SECTOR RECOVERY What will be EIB’s priorities in 2021, considering that a large part of funds from the previously announced aid package for the Western Balkans will go to Serbia? — In 2020, the EIB adopted EUR 1.7 billion worth COVID-19 financial package for the Western Balkans, as a part of EU institutions support jointed within Team Europe initiative. Over the course of last year, over EUR 1 billion has been mobilized to help the region alleviate the negative consequences of the crisis. Apart from this short-term im-

mediate support, the EIB Group signed important investments to ensure longer-term recovery, development of the private sector and vital infrastructure. For Serbia, one of the most significant transaction includes EUR 65 million allocated to digitalization of over 1500 schools, that will enable introduction of fast internet, IT equipment and e-learning platforms. This project will help teachers to obtain digital skills and conduct online lessons more efficiently. The other important investment is the very first EIB impact loan aiming to encourage

crucial for their future development. These goals, along with digital and green transition of the regional market will ensure sustainability and competitiveness in the post-covid era. In 2020, the European Investment Fund, part of EIB Group signed the first agreement with a local partner in Serbia worth EUR 60 million under COSME Digital Programme that will help Serbian small businesses improve their digital capacities. Significant boost to private sector development in the region will be the creation of new West-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

ern Balkan Guarantee Facility that is outlined within new Economic and Investment Plan by the European Commission. This initiative is expected to potentially mobilize up to EUR 20 billion of new investments for the region. At the end of your term, as head of the EIB Office for Serbia and the region, what would you single out as your greatest achievements? — I would single out EIB investments dedicated to education, innovation and science, such as the renovation and equipping of innovation laboratories within Serbia’s most relevant universities, as well as the construction of three Innovation Centres and Technological Parks in Belgrade, Niš and Novi Sad. They represent a turning point for Serbian science and research and importance of these institutions will grow steadily in years to come. I am personally proud that generations of talented students and entrepreneurs will be able to develop their innovation potentials in their own country in the advanced areas such as the virtual reality, artificial intelligence, biomedicine, environmental protection and IT. In which sectors did EIB invest the most during your mandate? — During my mandate, the EIB invested EUR 3.3 billion in the region, mostly for the transportation sector (EUR 1.6 billion) and small and medium enterprises (EUR 1.2 billion). These investments helped building modern, safer roads all over the region that improved commuting for millions of people and exchange of goods and commodities between Western Balkans and the European Union. I am glad that we’ve supported the reform of the education system in Serbia and Montenegro by providing funds for rehabilitation of couple of hundreds of primary, secondary schools and universities. Generations of schoolchildren will be able to learn in modern, equipped facilities.

FOR SERBIA, ONE OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT TRANSACTION INCLUDES EUR 65 MILLION ALLOCATED TO DIGITALIZATION OF OVER 1500 SCHOOLS I am also proud that during my mandate the largest Serbian judicial institution was refurbished, modernised and equipped after 40 years of existence. That is why today the Palace of Justice in Belgrade is able to advance better and faster legal processes. Thanks to EUR 365 million that EIB provided for the healthcare infrastructure, the redevelopment and extension of tertiary hospital services was enabled for the Clinical Centre Nis and Banja Luka. A new hospital in Bijeljina was built in a capacity of 16,000m2. We hope that these projects contributed to more efficient response to ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the longer-term, millions of people will be able to receive better medical care, especially when

the Clinical Centres in Belgrade, Novi Sad and Kragujevac have completed their construction. What impressions are you leaving Serbia with in terms of cooperation with both the state and private sector? — I can say that I was able to learn so much from every individual I was cooperating with, but, at the same, share my 15 years long experience in the management of public and private investments all over Europe. From that fruitful cooperation with the representatives of the local governments, EU institutions, clients, business partners and other relevant key stakeholders, significant progress has been achieved. What personal achievements

and projects are you especially proud of? How important is the support of the environment, family and friends when you hold such a responsible position? — I am proud of the fact that I was able to come back to my country of origin and support its development in the EU integration and better life for its people. Many initiatives started rolling out after decades of negligence due to lack of funds and significant steps forward have been made in the key sectors. I wish that I could have done more in some important areas such as climate action and environment, but and I am glad to see that the public is finally realizing the importance of these kind of projects. Leaders of the Western Balkans last year have signed a declaration for rolling out the Green Agenda and I hope that this event will propel initiatives in the environment sector. In Serbia, we are financing the construction of sewerage network in Palilula municipality and waste water system in several cities, and those investments have materialised during my mandate. As the EU climate bank, the EIB adopted a Climate Bank Roadmap in 2020, committing to align all its investments with the Paris Agreement and achieve ambitions goal to make Europe the first environmentally-neutral continent until 2050. The EIB plans to allocate €1 trillion to climate and environmental projects during the decade ahead and increase financing for climate action to at least 50% by 2025. The EIB will support green transition of the Western Balkan countries by providing technical and financial help for renewable energy projects. This transition will include introduction of diverse energy mix with lower greenhouse gas emission in the first phase, until complete switch to carbon-neutral energy resources. That is a long-term process, but I am glad that it is finally starting.

CHALLENGES AND PROJECTS What challenges do you expect to face this year on a personal level and could you tell us what projects you will be working on in the future? — For the time being, I plan to continue my career in the EIB on a new position where I will be responsible for management policies for EIB investments all over the globe. In that way, I hope to be able to contribute to

more efficient project appraisal, approval and implementation, having in mind the extensive experience I was able to obtain in my up to date carrier, also from the ground in the Western Balkan region. On a personal level, being a mother and supporting my children with their education and future career choices, is going to be the biggest challenge of all in the period to come.




by Žikica Milošević

The End of the Trump Era Neither the Devil nor the Saviour Iran, and to indulge in economic nationalism: "Americans must win with their own knowledge, not cooperation." Now the Chinese will have their own technologies, and Chimerica may just be a puppet which will 'hatch' China 2.0 - which has already used 2020 to reduce the economic gap with America and the West. The worst thing was leaving the WHO and the Paris Agreement, as well as the Iranian nuclear agreement. Trump's obsession with Iran culminated in the assassination of General Qasem Soleimani, which is why Iran is now seeking an international arrest warrant for Trump. The fixation that Isra-

onald Trump lost the election because of the coronavirus. An inadequate reaction, typical of individualistic value systems, made people too relaxed, and many even believed that the virus was a conspiracy. Had it not been for the pandemic, Trump would have easily won a second term against a distinctly dull opponent like Joe Biden. The economy was better than ever but eventually, Trump's 'black swan' was the end of him.


THE FLOURISHING ECONOMY... UNTIL... Trump promised that America would return to its old method of "super-liberalism", so he "cut down a bunch of regulations". Interestingly enough, I know more Serbs who emigrated to the United States under Trump than at any other time before him, when they mostly moved to Canada, Australia, or New Zealand. Apparently, people were satisfied with the economic part of his government and if there was no pandemic, in which Donald did very badly, there would be no chance for someone to take away his second term. Americans are generally not interested in their country's international policy, but rather they are more interested in their wallets, just as we, i.e. the rest of the world, are generally not interested in their wallets, but in their country's international policy. However, as a person who believes in the "invisible hand" of Adam Smith, Trump has not done enough. He rode out at dusk, leaving behind the largest number of people dying from the coronavirus in the world - 357,000 at the time of writing of this article. And that's worse than a war. But even that may not have been the trigger for his downfall; not even "an election theft" that Trump touted. The biggest problem is that in the so-called swing states, especially in the Rust Belt, the lives of citizens have not improved so much. The expectations of ordinary citizens who turned their backs on Obama were largely betrayed. So now, Trump was the "new Obama," in the sense that he was looking at the back of the work-


IN THE END, HE WAS NOT THE DEVIL AS HIS OPPONENTS PORTRAYED HIM, BUT HE WAS ALSO NOT THE SAVIOUR OF AMERICA AND THE WORKING CLASS, AS PEOPLE EXPECTED ers from states he promised a renaissance to. He protected his rich friends too much and the working class too little. Replacing NAFTA with a new agreement was not enough. Washington swamp wasn’t dried up although there was enough time to do it.

SOCIETAL DIVISIONS What bothered Americans the most, and the rest of the world much less, were the divisions in society: should monuments to Confederate generals remain? Should ships and military bases to be named after them? Once upon a time, in 1865, that was a sign of reconciliation and unification of the nation - "No-one lost, neither North nor South" but now we are in a new PC- and cancel culture-time. Something that has long been resolved in other countries of the civilized world, like equality of women or black people, are still issues that burn like eternal fire in the United States. As a result, America was shaken by the protests of #Metoo and Black Lives Matter, adding more fire to the discussion, while Trump, as an old white man, had a clear stance, which almost 50% of Americans considered correct. Precisely because of that, we cannot say that these problems have been solved. Obama "solved“

the LGBTQ+ problem by allowing same-sex marriages. But that was the easiest thing to do because the LGBTQ+ community has money, lobbies, and they don't take money from the companies' coffers. The issue of women and African-Americans is much more complex, because they are weaker in the lobbying process and they have less money. If women and African-Americans were made really equal, that would cost both the state and companies billions. That's why Obama didn't do it, even though he might have wanted to, and Trump didn't even want to do it. He truly didn't. He didn't tear down his ivory tower. And he paid the price for that.

INTERNATIONAL ROLE Most interesting thing to note is Trump’s rather positive role in international diplomacy. Of course, there are also negative aspects: he promised a détente with Russia and relations between the two countries became slightly worse. He has strained relations with China, feeling that China will overtake the United States, but that is only an attempt to stop the speeding train. Huawei will become the world's No. 1 in a few years and that is inevitable. China has used its sanctions to indifferently restart relations with

el is good and Iran is bad, resulted in Bahrain, the UAE, Morocco and Sudan signing an agreement about the normalization of relations with Israel, while Chad, Oman and Saudi Arabia are next in line to do it. Although this was a positive development, the problem has not been solved - just as peace in the Middle East was not possible if everyone hated Israel and no one had normal relations with it, so it will not be possible if everyone hates Iran and imposes sanctions on it, even if all Arabs, except for a few countries, abandon the Palestinians and turn to something they contemptuously called the "Zionist Entity." If the problem of Iran, Israel and Palestine is not solved, peace will not be lasting.

EPILOGUE Although he killed Soleimani and asked around how to strike at Iran, Trump was still the most peaceful American president. What remains after him are racial and gender quarrels that he did not resolve and the "bloody seal of rebellion" in the end. He did not start a single war. Americans have had a couple of good economic years. In the end, he was not the Devil as his opponents portrayed him, but he was also not the saviour of America and the working class, as people expected.

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


Sustainable Growth in All Areas Thanks to Digital Transformation Every ambitious person should invest time for career planning, expertise development and networking, but also helping others to grow


BORISLAV TADIĆ Senior Vice President at Deutsche Telekom

n an exclusive interview for D&C magazine, we spoke with Mr. Borislav Tadić, whose responsibilities at Deutsche Telekom include digitization, transformation, customer experience, efficiencies, international shared services and future of human resources, about career development, digital transformation, customer experience as well as about the challenges he faced in 2020 and plans for 2021. He is a passionate traveler, a speaker at major events in the domain of innovation, digitization and strategy. He is also a member of several non-profit, academic and professional organizations, such as Tesla Center, Graz Center of Excellence, Trust-b, IEEE, PMI, ISACA, or ISC2, and holder of numerous awards and certifications.


Could you tell us more about what your role is and how it`s difficult today to work on career growth and development? — Deutsche Telekom is currently driving one of the biggest highspeed network rollouts on the continent. In the role of Senior Vice President within DT Technik, together with thousands of my motivated experts in Germa-

ny, I’m bringing fiber optics to the households, public and business sites and millions of citizens in the northern states. Only in the last 10 years, I had a privilege to work in different management roles such as strategy, IT, security, network or digital transformation on four continents thanks to possibility of cross-functional and international moves in DT. I also had a pleasure to participate in an Artificial Intelligence program at Stanford and obtain various professional certifications. We offer this to every engaged employee – one can choose to take on a project in Asia or

bile, which successfully merged with Sprint in 2020, is covering over 8.300 cities and towns in the USA with 5G, more than twice the coverage area of Verizon or AT&T. At the same time in 2020, 70% of German population got already covered by our 5G and 575.000km of high-speed fiber optical network. In the domain of the highspeed networks, automation deeply entered the spheres of data entry, planning, maintenance and documentation. Digital transformation also helps us to reduce our CO2 emissions and obtain 100% of the electricity from renewable energy sources as early as this year. We strengthened our presence in CEE through, for example, 40% of the 5G population coverage by Magenta in Austria, investments of Hrvatski, Crnogorski and Makedonski Telekom, and partnering in the Digital WestBalkans6+ initiative, shaping the political and economic landscape. A transformation of any kind breeds challenge, what are some of the challenges you are facing today, especially in the era of pandemic? — In the beginning of the pandemic, our priority was to en-

Now we have a unique chance to define the “new normal” with all affected parties, to embrace change of the office landscape, digital tools and remote work, and to help the commercial sector to recover faster. As a passionate traveler, I am looking forward to seeing how “digital nomad” community and related incentives promoted by the employers and the countries will develop. We also need to actively manage the demographic change within the company, which is reflecting the general trends within aging European population. Measures we applied in the organization, such as coaching, reskilling and digital learning, proved that people can successfully adopt automation, quality assurance and lean management on a major scale in all life phases. What are the plans for 2021, personally and in company, how will you continue to grow and transform? — In 2021 we are rolling out more than one million FTTH connections in Germany, and DT will further enlarge 5G, IoT, cloud gaming and cybersecurity footprint. In my region, we already doubled our FTTH production last year

PERSONALLY, I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO MORE HUMAN INTERACTION IN THIS YEAR, BECAUSE VIDEO CHAT CANNOT REPLACE ALL ACTIVITIES WITH FAMILY, FRIENDS AND PARTNERS course on Scrum using our learning apps. Every ambitious person should invest time for career planning, expertise development and networking, but also helping others to grow. What digital transformation of Deutsche Telekom has enabled when we speak about customer experience and technological advancements? — Digital transformation improves our customer experience, boosts our growth and accelerates our internal processes. Our T-Mo-

sure the safety of our employees and resilience of our operations. In Germany, our network experienced up to 40% more traffic when many organizations switched to “home office” and consumers fully “embraced” streaming, online shopping and gaming. We were also very engaged keeping the vulnerable parts of the society, such as schools, hospitals and senior homes, connected. Together with SAP we developed Corona Warn-App, which is well accepted among citizens.

and this year we are going to double it again. We will also continue digital transformation and investments into our people and the environment. Personally, I am looking forward to more human interaction in this year, because video chat cannot replace all activities with family, friends and partners. I hope to continue travelling and meeting new people, discovering their culture and history. I also plan to increase my humanitarian contribution, enjoy opera again and run a marathon in 2021.



by Žikica Milošević

2021 Will be a Fascinating Year for Egypt We hope the Serbian tourists will come to see the new wonders of Egypt

H.E. AMR ALJOWAILY The Ambassador of Egypt

onsidering that huge and fascinating museums are being built in new cities, as are new airports and roads, Egypt was one of the most successful countries in 2020. Serbian tourists remained loyal to Egypt throughout this challenging year. We spoke about this and many other topics with H.E. Mr Amr Aljowaily, the Ambassador of Egypt to Serbia.


Egypt and Serbia have had excellent political relations from the era of both kingdoms, with the Yugoslav King taking refuge in Cairo for a while. After a short period of a decline during the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood, we, once again, have excellent relations. How do you assess the relations between the two countries? — Cairo was the first seat of any Serbian envoy in Africa and the Arab world. That has spurred diplomatic activities in the wider sense of the term meaning economic, commercial and cultural relations and other type of relations between the two countries. Current relations are now at probably one of their peaks. We've had three active years of cultural relations that are developing further. I believe that, in 2021, there will be a culmination of this spirit of activities that took place at high levels following the signing of memoranda of understanding and several other agreements, and implementing a number of joint mechanisms. I'm happy to share with you the information that, in 2021, the two countries will hopefully have the meeting of the Joint Economic Committee after 11 years of recess, as well as the first joint Business Council meeting on the margin of the aforementioned Joint Economic Committee meeting. I really do hope that 2021 will be the year of diplomacy and commerce for Egypt and Serbia.



WE ARE BUILDING THREE MEGACITIES AND A HANDFUL OF MUSEUMS AT THE SAME TIME, WHICH WILL ALL BE CONNECTED VIA MOTORWAYS AND RAILWAY We have seen the renaissance of Egyptian tourism after the Arab Spring. How much the Serbian tourists contribute? Are they considered loyal tourists? — I use the term loyalty because this is very much the characteristic that I have discovered in Serbian tourists coming to Egypt. When I first came here, in January 2018, the first thing that I did was to ask my colleagues at the embassy to check their records and see who were the five tourists who had the highest number of issued Egyptian visas in the last five years. Subsequently, we offered these people free trips to

Egypt, and they chose actually to come back with their families or friends. I was pleasantly surprised by that. Some of these tourists had been to Egypt close to 30 times in the last maybe five or plus years. Can you imagine that? That is never a result of only a good promotion, but also of satisfaction. In 2019, we saw the rise in the number of charter flights in the amount of 55% between the two countries, and in 2020, there was an estimation of a further 50% increase, but then the pandemic happened. Nevertheless, tourists from Serbia went

to Egypt very frequently in 2020. Egypt is the third most preferred destination of Serbian tourists. What are the segments of potential growth in 2021 and once the pandemic subsides? — 2020 was a challenging year for the tourism industry and the civil aviation industry. When I came to Serbia in 2018, there were about 28,000 Serbian tourists visiting Egypt annually. In 2019, that number doubled to 56,000, but I don’t think that will happen this year. However, Serbian tourists remained loyal, and maybe Egypt is the number 3 destination in total numbers, but in terms of

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

air-destinations, it is the number one. The reason for that is that Egypt has never closed its borders to Serbian tourists. That again is a reflection of how strong the friendship between the two countries is and how important this interaction through tourism is. I am absolutely confident that this will not only be maintained but will even grow through the number of new developments that we are working on in Egypt. One of them is eco-tourism. I would like to invite you and your readers to check Eco-Egypt experiences on Instagram and Facebook. This is a new dimension of tourism that Egypt is launching for individual travelers who would like to explore Egypt by bike or on foot and who would like to become one with nature on the coastline or in the Sahara. Cultural tourism has merged with the classical one. What cultural activities are you planning in 2021? — Ljiljana Habjanović-Đurović has endorsed the newly translated book by the famous Egyptian writer Sukheir El Kalamawi called “Start from the Beginning”. This is our newest product of cooperation. There is no better way for societies to get to know each other than through culture. The best way to get to know a culture is to visit a country it comes from, and the second-best is through music, books and films. Serbian Culture Minister Maja Gojković and I have talked about commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Non-Aligned Movement. There will be several activities to mark that anniversary. Of course, our cooperation with the Arabic Chair at the Belgrade University (everybody there speaks such an elegant variant of the Arabic language) is excellent. I would also like to recommend the book written by the Egyptian writer Nagib Mahfouz, who is also a Nobel Prize winner. In January 2019, we visited the St Anthony’s Monastery near Hurghada and St Paul’s Monastery. You mentioned the undiscovered gems of the Mediterranean coast near El Alamein and the beautiful Alexandria. Will we open that door soon? — St. Anthony comes under one of the Red Sea governments which means that it can be visited during a one-day trip to Hurghada, which is the number one destination. I visited so many beautiful monasteries in Serbia and I know

Since these sites are very close to each other, tourists with a very tight schedule will be able now to see the ancient civilization, artefacts and antiquities exhibited at the Museum, as well as the site of one and the only remaining oldworld wonder – the pyramids. The GEM is also close to the toll station of the Cairo-Alexandria motorway. So, tourists can visit all these sites in one go and then take a two-hour drive to Alexandria. The Museum is also 20 minutes away from the new Sphinx Airport. There's another new museum that is going to be opened this year. It's called the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization and

you choose the name? — Right now, there is a handball match taking place in the New Capital under the auspices of the First World Handball Championship hosted on the African continent. The new capital has a number of facilities that are opened to visitors - the largest Orthodox Cathedral in Africa, one of the largest mosques in Africa, a big conference centre, etc. The government ministries are expected to relocate to the new capital mid-this year. I'm confident that the capital will get its name when the time is right. I would also like to give you a quick overview of megaprojects that are being implement-


ed in Egypt as we speak. These are the three new capitals – the new capital of Egypt, the new capital of the Red Sea called Al Jalila, and the one we mentioned before. These three megacities are being built all at the same time with the view of changing the demographic and economic distribution. Plus, several major motorways of the combined length of 12,000km are being built which is a kind of upgrade that we've never seen in our modern history before. They are essential for budding economic activity. We have also started building a railway between Ain Sokhna, 300km north of Hurghada, and El Alamein that would facilitate the connection between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean, as well as the transport of goods and individuals. All this creates tremendous opportunities for Serbian businesses too.

how embedded the phenomenon of monasteries is in the rich Serbian culture. For us, the Egyptians, the Red Sea is mainly a winter getaway while the Mediterranean Sea is the most popular summer destination. Alexandria, of course, is the oldest and the biggest city on the Mediterranean. There is a megaproject under development currently - the construction of the new capital on the Mediterranean called El Alamein, the site of the WW2 battle. With its turquoise waters and white sands, as a Mediterranean destination, El Alamein is different from the Red Sea where the sand is yellowish and the sea is of a different shade of blue.

The new Grand Egyptian Museum seems fascinating. We had a sneak peek in 2019. Can you tell us more about the project? — The abbreviation for the Grand Egyptian Museum - GEM – has a lovely meaning in English, and this museum is truly a gem. It's the largest investment in culture of Egypt ever and probably one of the largest in the world, amounting to $1 billion. For the first time ever, the Museum will exhibit and present the entire collection of Tutankhamun in one place so the visitors will be able to immerse themselves in Tutankhamun’s life and golden era. The Museum is located on the Giza Plateau, and is in the close proximity to the Giza pyramids and the Sphinx.

is almost the mirror image of the GEM. The GEM is the largest museum in the world dedicated to one civilization - Ancient Egypt. It does not cover the Greco-Roman Egypt or Coptic Egypt or Islamic or Ottoman Egypt. The other museum that I just mentioned - the Museum of Egyptian Civilization is the opposite. It showcases Egypt through different phases and stages of its history. These two make a great combination. I would also like to mention a new museum in Sharm El Sheikh and several other resorts cities like Hurghada. So, 2021 is going to be a remarkable year for culture. The New Capital is growing. When will it be finished and did



Transformation into a Future-oriented Company Galenika has transformed and, from a tradition-based company, it has managed to switch to a futureoriented, mission-led pharmaceutical company with an innovative mindset a special socially responsible project of national importance which aims to educate young people about healthy living habits. Finally, Galenika has recognized the importance of and hence supported the exhibition "Love is Love by Jean Paul Gaultier" staged by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade, which in these challenging times, provides people with responsible and safe consumption of culture and global trends. In this way, and as a true LOVE brand of Serbia, Galenika highlights one of the most important values not only in the pandemic, but at all times.

RICARDO VIAN MARQUES General Manager of Galenika a.d. Belgrade

icardo Vian Marques, General Manager of Galenika, spoke in an interview for D&C magazine about the changes in cthe ompany, innovations, results and goals for this year, as well as about CSR.


The last two years have been very dynamic for Galenika. In which segments of your business did you record positive changes? — The trust that people have in Galenika and its quality is something that inspires us every day. In order to maintain and even grow this trust, we have invested in new production and business standards, our employees, portfolio growth, environmental protection and sustainability, digital transformation and Industry 4.0 with Smart Manufacturing and IoT in production, as well as corporate relations and product campaigns. Examples are many, but I would like to highlight the Businesss Intelligence & Advanced Analytics platform which has been launched to help the company obtain information for faster and better strategic and operational decisions. As you can see, the last two years were marked with changes and progress. Are you satisfied with the results that the company achieved in 2020, given the crisis caused by the pandemic and the slowdown in economic activity in all sectors? — True mentality of winners is seen in the time of adversity, and 2020 was exactly that. Galenika has recorded constant growth in all segments of its business as a direct result of the extraordinary team work and efforts. In Serbia, the company increased its sales by 19% compared to 2019. Also, over 2020, Galenika grew over 50% faster than the market, which


Which development opportunities does Galenika have and what are the plans for this year and the next period? — Safety of employees and stable supply of products remains our number one priority. Strategically speaking, we are focused on innovating the company and its portfolio for the benefit of the consumers and the market. I want to see Galenika grow even bigger, with the same trust and quality as the basis. In the


I WANT TO SEE GALENIKA GROW EVEN BIGGER, WITH THE SAME TRUST AND QUALITY AS ITS FOUNDATION. IN THE FIRST HALF OF 2021, WE EXPECT TO LAUNCH FOUR NEW PRODUCTS ON THE MARKET additionally solidified our stable second position on the Serbian pharmaceutical market. We are in process of opening 6 new export markets, while Galenika is already actively present in 10 markets in the EU, Middle East and Africa, where it increased sales by 68%. I have seen nothing but dedication and exceptional work morale last year and I am proud of all the team members. Are innovations possible in our market and does Serbia have the prerequisites for that? — I have to reflect on the challenges that the economies all over the world are facing. The pandem-

ic is not just a health crisis, it is also a socio-economic adversity, which we have so far combated in a strong and dedicated manner thanks to the innovations we have been introducing and the team strength. Opportunities for innovations are possible in many spheres and in Galenika, we have a high level of awareness and courage to embrace them. For instance, we have 22 new products in process of registration. Galenika is now more vibrant and future-oriented than ever before. That is why prevention topic is high on our agenda. Innovation also proves our mission. Our online platform, "Hello Twenties", is

first half of 2021, we expect to launch four new products on the market. Galenika's Research and Development Institute is in the final phase of developing two new products, while as a result of the strategic partnership with our sister company from Brazil - EMS, we are working on technology transfer of several products from the new generation of generic drugs. Our goal is to generate value and fuel positive changes through investments, innovations and support all stakeholders. On that path, we need to be flexible, highly focused and ready to recognize opportunities, even in the jungle of adversity.

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


The Secret of the First Impression is in the Smile



A beautiful and healthy smile is a cure for everything, while dentists and dental prosthetists can play a key role in that



Dr IGOR RISTIĆ Dental prosthetics specialist from the Centre for Dental Aesthetics and Implantology (CDEI)

ccording to psychologists, happy and smiling people are favourite collaborators and solve stressful tasks better. From hair and skin, through clothes, behaviour and attitude, we are observed and evaluated every day according to various motives and intentions of our environment. Whether it is social, business or communication with an emotional background, the impression we leave often precedes us, even before we meet someone. Thanks to good make-up, wellgroomed hair and a bit of imaginative styling, the fairer sex can get the most out of their looks, while men can look elegant thanks to a nice wristwatch, well-tailored suit and innate or learned style. However, various psychological tests show that a beautiful and healthy smile is the "main weapon" and an important component of the first visual impression, which is formed before we officially introduce ourselves. What is it then that makes smile such an important tool in non-verbal communication? When we are smiling, we get a smile in return from colleagues, staff and clients. This can often be a sign of approval or agreement with our disposition. According to psychologists, happy and smiling people are favourite collaborators and solve stressful tasks better. They are also more likely to be successful in life. Laughter makes our immune system more efficient, relaxes the body and makes it more resistant to diseases. When smiling we look younger, more attractive and seem more reliable. In the end, acquaintances form partnerships, both business and emotional, with a smile and handshake.



SMILING MAKES US LOOK YOUNGER, MORE ATTRACTIVE AND MORE CONFIDENT Dr Igor Ristić, a dental prosthetics specialist from the Centre for Dental Aesthetics and Implantology (CDEI), talks about how to have and maintain a beautiful and healthy smile. "Since we are hoping that the pandemic is slowly passing and that 2021 will be a period of dealing with the consequences the pandemic has caused, one of the common reasons for addressing middle-aged patients is the awareness that with the help of various interventions, we can reconstruct, refresh or completely change their

smile,” Dr Ristić says. “Sometimes it is enough just to do a good and thorough cleaning of the teeth, which we, at the CDEI, perform with special care using the latest devices for the elimination of soft and hard deposits, and then proceed to teeth whitening. However, in our practice, which nurtures a team-like therapeutic approach, we have seen an increased number of requests for smaller-scale or somewhat more complex aesthetic dental interventions on our patients. Such interventions often

correct not only the patient's appearance, but also their overall oral health, phonetics, quality and comfort when chewing, and facilitate breathing during sleep,” Dr Ristić adds. “With the complete digitalization of the diagnostic and therapeutic process, the patient can fully influence the future result and be involved in creating individual solutions in a professionally acceptable framework. The technology of intraoral teeth or implant scanning (without the use of any radiation) allows us to print prototypes, i.e. complete models of future teeth, in 3D. Only when we adjust this prototype to the patient’s mouth, taking into account all the feedback from the patient (the test-drive phase), we can move on to the next phase in which we make permanent crowns from zirconium or disilicate ceramics. In that way, we avoid the patient’s potential disappointment with the end result because they were practically involved in the entire process all the time and could have changed anything they wanted. This is a useful "parachute" that protects both us and patients, and shortens the procedure that leads to the desired solution. However, the benefits of implementing fantastic innovative technologies in dentistry are not magic. Rather, the comprehensive knowledge and experience of the whole team are what solves even the most complex cases. Biology and recovery time are still the same, but today we are more precise, more efficient and much less invasive. Thus, even the biggest obstacles to achieving a beautiful and healthy smile become insurmountable. I am confident that everyone can, sooner or later, enjoy the benefits I mentioned earlier,” Dr Ristić concludes. Modern dental treatmant workflow video available on this scan code.




by Žikica Milošević

Inside the EU Member, Not Part of the EU




Islamic Revolution Day



oundation of Vatican F City



Revolution Day



ational Day N (Emperor's Birthday)



Independence Day

hrases about "Serbia's entry into the EU" and "the Kosovo issue" have been constantly mentioned lately, thus linking the two. It is, however, interesting to note that there are the EU member states whereby parts of their territory are not parts of the EU. And we do not mean trivial cases such as Cyprus, which northern part seceded under the name of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. There are other, contractually agreed "exceptions". The first and most famous are the two autonomous provinces of Denmark, Greenland and the Faroe Islands. Both areas are part of Denmark but are outside the EU, which gives them the opportunity to conclude their contracts outside EU legislation or to respect fisheries laws "at their whim". There is also St. Barthelemy, which we already wrote about, that


withdrew from the EU in 2012 because they estimated that it was "unprofitable" for them. The French territories (OCT) that are not part of the EU are: Pierre and Miquelon, French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna and New Caledonia, as well as the uninhabited French Southern and Antarctic Territories. The Netherlands also includes 6 overseas countries and territories in the Caribbean. These territories are not part of the EU. Also, prior to Brexit, the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey were not members of the EU. The Åland Islands voted in a 1994 referendum, separately from Finland, on whether they wanted to be part of the EU, and unlike the Faroe Islands, this Finnish autonomous territory voted to be part of the EU. So, it is possible for the country to be part of the EU, but not as the whole.



ational Day and N Liberation Day



Independence Day MARCH



Proclamation of Independence 1992




Liberation Day

FRANK ALETTER New director of German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce (AHK Serbia The Board of Directors of the German-Serbian Chamber of Commerce (AHK Serbia) appointed Frank Aletter to the position of Director and Executive Member of the Board of Directors of AHK Serbia commencing on February 1, 2021. Frank Aletter has succeeded the previous director of AHK Serbia, Martin Knapp, who has been in this function for 5 years, i.e. since the official founding of the Chamber. German investors, represented by the then Delegation of the German Businesses in Serbia and the German-Serbian Business Association, today called AHK Serbia, are celebrating 20 years of operations in Serbia this year. Frank Aletter has over ten years of experience in various positions in the German chambers of commerce and industry system

that has 140 offices in 92 countries worldwide. Prior to taking office in Serbia, Frank Aletter had been the Deputy Director of the South African-German Chamber of Commerce (AHK South Africa) since 2008, focusing on business development and advising German and European companies about the opportunities and strategies regarding entering the South African market. In his career, Mr Aletter was also the Deputy Director of the Dutch-German Chamber of Commerce, as well as the Head of the Coordination Sector of the AHK Representation Abroad at the German Chamber of Commerce based in Berlin. He holds a master's degree in law from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, specializing in commercial law.



1848 Revolution Day



St. Patrick's Day



Independence Day



Independence Day



Independence Day



Freedom Day


CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

ALESSANDRO BRAGONZI New EIB Head of Representative Office for the Western Balkans The European Investment Bank has appointed Alessandro Bragonzi the new Head of the Regional Representation for the Western Balkans. He is succeeding Dubravka Nègre, whose mandate ended 15 January. Mr. Bragonzi has been with the EIB for 11 years. Prior to this position, he was the EIB’s representative for Albania, responsible for institutional and operational activities of the country, as well as of North Macedonia and Kosovo*. Before his current assignment, he contributed

to the development of the Bank’s mandate management activity for EU financial instruments. He appraised, structured and negotiated financing for investment projects and lending to governments, banks and projects, while leading multidisciplinary teams. As the largest investor in the region, the EIB has unlocked over €8.6 billion since 2009 to support the modernisation of vital infrastructure and the private sector’s development in the Western Balkans.

PAVLE KNEŽEVIĆ New CFO at the helm of Siemens d.o.o. Beograd Pavle Knežević was appointed the new chief financial officer of Siemens d.o.o. Beograd on January 1, 2021. Pavle Knežević has almost 10 years of experience in various positions in the Siemens Company. Prior to this position, he was the financial director of the Smart Infrastructure division of Siemens d.o.o. Beograd, which he held for three years. Mr Knežević started his career in the banking sector in 2010 and in less than two years, he joined the Siemens Serbia team. He completed his master's studies in General Man-

agement at University of Sheffield, UK, and having in mind that taxes are one of his fields of interest, in addition to corporate finance, he continued his education in this field at the Faculty of Law in Belgrade. Siemens in Serbia is one of the leading companies in all areas of its operations, including production, transmission and distribution of energy, automation and digitalization in the processing and production industry, and transport solutions for rail and road transport, thus contributing to implementation of capital investments in Serbia.

VESNA PRODANOVIĆ New General Manager Jadar at Rio Tinto Vesna Prodanović joined Rio Tinto as the new General Manager of the Jadar Project with an engeneering and project managing backgorund that comes from 25 years of experience working in the construction industry. In her long lasting career, Vesna worked in renowned construction companies –Energoprojekt and Bechtel – on design, construction and project implementation as an engineer, coordinator, site and project manager and director on developments in Serbia,

Russia, Nigeria and Belorussia. Vesna was also project director in front of the main local contractor on the New copper smelter and sulphuric acid plant project in RTB Bor and is president of Assosiation of consulting engineers ACES. Vesna will lead this world class unique project, important on both national and global level, through the Feasibility study advancing it towards the phase of implementation while keeping the good practice of responsible and sustainable aproach.

BOJAN MIJAILOVIĆ New Chairman of the Executive Board of Sava Osiguranje Bojan Mijailović was appointed Chairman of the Executive Board of Sava Osiguranje on January 1, 2021. He gained his abundant experience in the financial sector in management positions in insurance companies, the banking sector, as well as at the National Bank of Serbia. In his previous executive term, he managed the company Sava

Životno Osiguranje, which, during his management, achieved significant growth in the insurance market, improved its business and improved its position by providing digital and innovative services to existing and new clients. Bojan Mijailović graduated from the Faculty of Mathematics, is married and has three children.




Everything You Need to Know About Huawei Mate 40 Pro Smartphone Launched in October last year, the Huawei Mate40 Pro has revolutionized the smartphone industry he company has once again demonstrated its commitment to innovation, combining cutting-edge design and the best technology, providing the highest quality user experience. Business users will be especially thrilled with newest addition to Huawei smartphones family, having in mind it’s strong performances, battery life, security and privacy protection, and of course, collaboration with other Huawei devices. Meet the powerful Huawei Mate 40 Pro. The uncompromising HUAWEI 88° Horizon Display design makes for an impressive screen, while the curves provide grip comfort. On the back of this device stands out the iconic Space Ring design, now characteristic of the Huawei Mate series, as the rear panel available in two colors: Mystic Silver and Black. To ensure that the Huawei Mate 40 Pro is completely seamless, this powerful phone is equipped with a 4400 mAh battery, and supports the fastest Huawei SuperCharge charger. Combined with the most powerful Huawei



chipset, Kirin 9000, Mate 40 Pro will provide amazing performances such as opening large files, advanced programs and applications in just a few seconds. The Multi-Screen Collabo-

ration feature, powered by Huawei Share, offers a whole new way to manage multiple Huawei devices, and run multiple applications simultaneously. You can connect your Mate 40 Pro to Hua-


wei laptop (eg. Huawei MateBook X) and use MateBook X to manage up to three apps on your laptop screen. You can also transfer data from smartphone to laptop, or vice versa, by dragging and dropping them on PC screen, thanks to touchscreen on Huawei MateBook X laptop. When it comes to privacy and security, the EMUI 11 operating system contains a number of security solutions to protect Huawei users, including, for example, the removal of sensitive personal data such as location from a file before sending it. The cameras on the Huawei Mate 40 Pro phone, traditionally, were created in collaboration with Leica. The rear camera system features three cameras: a 50MP Super Sensing Wide, a 20MP Ultra Wide Cine, a 12MP Telephoto lens that supports 5x optical zoom, 10x hybrid zoom and 50x digital zoom. The fourth lens is a laser sensor that deserves precise and fast focus on photos and videos. Videography is also improved with Super Steady Shot, XD Fusion HDR video, Tracking Shot and Story Creator options.

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs



THE 2021-2026 EMPLOYMENT STRATEGY TO BE ADOPTED SOON We are implementing measures to rehabilitate the economy as quickly and efficiently as possible DARIJA KISIĆ TEPAVČEVIĆ Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs

he COVID-19 epidemic, which we have been battling for over a year now, together with the rest of the world, has long since surpassed the health aspect, and now has a social and economic component too. It is our obligation, as the Government, to implement measures for the recovery of the economy in the next period as quickly and efficiently as possible. To make it easier for employers and workers during the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Work Health and Safety Directorate has published a Guide to Safe and Healthy Work from Home. Also, the Employment Strategy, covering the period from 2021 to 2026, will be adopted soon, which main goal is to enable continuous employment growth. Slowing down the migration of the able-bodied population of the Republic of Serbia to foreign countries, as well as attracting foreigners of various


The Work Health and Safety Directorate has published a Guide to Safe and Healthy Work from Home



educational profiles and employment of young people, are also goals that we will strive to accomplish in the coming period. We are also working on seasonal employment reform. The Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs is also committed to increasing efficiency in exercising the rights of social welfare beneficiaries. An important step is to create a legal framework for its implementation. The Draft Law on the Social Card was adopted, as one of the priorities of the Government of the Republic of Serbia and the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs. 

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


THE FOCUS IS ON DIVERSITY AND INCLUSIVENESS We build relationships based on mutual respect, trust and responsibility






P&O Director Mars UBBAI



bout challenges in the organization of remote work, are there any difficulties for new employees in getting acquainted with work, but also about new projects and campaigns at company Mars, we spoke with Zorana Novaković, P&O Director Mars UBBAI


After the initial challenges in organization of remote work during last year, new struggles appeared in care for employee wellbeing. How do you motivate your team and encourage them to balance work and personal life? — These times highlighted the importance of work and personal life balance, and called for unique ways in maintaining employee wellbeing levels, both physically and emotionally. At Mars, we have the Health and Safety department focusing on both mental and physical wellbeing, with psychological help and support for employees. The Mars Associate Assistance Program is now available in every country we operate in. This program provides personal and confidential resource, which is designed to support Associates to thrive through free access to wide range of consulting services, helping to resolve personal concerns that may affect work and wellbeing. This service is available and open to all our Associates and their household members. It also involves wellbeing ambassadors - enthusiastic employees ready to help, not depending on the position this person holds professionally. For instance, in our UBBAI region, there are 7 wellbeing ambassadors. Their main task is to devote a certain time every day to regularly engage other employees in activities that are beneficial for them. Alongside with other wellbeing related activities at Mars, we have experimented in several ways – for instance, online yoga sessions, morning exercises and similar. Also, our colleagues, here in the Balkans, read fairy tales online to children of other colleagues, thereby giving

some free time to parents of these kids.

The work process in the broad and diverse region like UBBAI that has 15 markets must be impressive. What digital tools do you use for improvement of communication, performance and learning? — In our UBBAI region, there is a great diversity of generations, languages and cultures, as well as communication and leadership differences. Accordingly, we build relationships based on mutual respect, trust and responsibility, in which employees are free to ask questions and contact any colleague, regardless of the country in which they are located. Also, we are using digital HR management tools already for some time, and strive for efficiency and simplicity in our geographically dispersed setup. One of the most frequently used tools is iTMS system - Integrated Talent Management system – that is accessible to employees, line managers and HR, and it integrates various data throughout employee life cycle. In order to stay on top of learning demands in the Digital Age, few years ago we introduced internal learning platform with unlimited on-demand learning opportunities for leadership and functional development - MyMarsU. Many resources, videos, articles and e-learnings are accessible through this platform ensuring the best learning experience for everyone - employees can learn exactly what they need, when they have time and as much as they need. How did the new situation affect job interviews and attracting talents? Are there any difficulties for new employees in getting acquainted with work? — Mars has developed employee selection process which has been adjusted fully for remote interaction with candidates. There are no borders anymore for attracting talents and developing careers of employees across the world. It depends on language

skills, but the physical location, mobility or readiness to relocate does not play so critical role in chasing professional dreams anymore. It is a win-win for both employees and employers. Employees are able to explore career development opportunities without sacrificing family or personal aspects, meanwhile companies can hire high level professionals anywhere. Furthermore, we use our own approach of candidate evaluation which includes competency assessment and practical tasks and it is also successful in remote selection process, done via MS Teams. In order to provide more information to candidates about the company and future workplace we currently use social media and various employer branding activities, but for sure in nearest future additional tools will be used also in the area of promoting employer brand, attraction and recruitment. The focus is on diversity and inclusiveness, to ensure that everyone feels accepted, respected and engaged.

As part of the long-standing struggle for gender equality, Mars has introduced a new global #HereToBeHeard campaign. How will the campaign contribute to creating a fair business environment? — At Mars, we strive to create gender balance and equal earnings for more than 130,000 Associates. In the UBBAI region, to which Serbia belongs, women represent more than 46% of employees, while in we have 75% of women in our leadership team. The #HereToBeHeard campaign was launched as part of the "Full Potential" program and aims to provide all women an equal chance of success. All women are invited to share their opinion on a special website Beheard.Mars.com and say what needs to be done to achieve equality in the world. The collected opinions will be analyzed at the University of Oxford and will be used to develop activities and initiatives aimed at empowering women and creating equal opportunities for all. 



by Nevena Kuveljić

NO MAJOR CHANGES IN THE LABOUR MARKET The Serbian Government's measures have ensured economic stability and preserved existing jobs ZORAN MARTINOVIĆ Director of the National Employment Service

e talked to Mr Zoran Martinović, Director of the National Employment Service, about how the labour market in Serbia survived the coronavirus pandemic, which job profiles were in demand and which were in short supply, as well as about the new Employment Strategy and plans for 2021.


The number of registered unemployed persons in December 2020 was about 3% lower than in December 2019

What are the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic for the Serbian labour market? Has the number of unemployed persons and, consequently, the number of unemployment benefit recipients increased? — Despite the pandemic and difficult conditions for doing business, all labour market indicators in the Republic of Serbia show that there have been no significant changes. According to the Labour Force Survey for Q3 2020, the unemployment rate at the end of 2020 stayed in single digits (9%), while the number of registered unemployed persons decreased in December 2020 compared to December 2019 by about 3%. From the declaration of the state of emergency in mid-March until the end of 2020, the National Employment Service (NES) received 51,277 applications for unemployment benefits, which was about 8% less than in the same period in 2019. At the end of 2020, we had the lowest number of unemployment benefit recipients in the last several years, i.e. fewer than 30,000 people. Since the NES register includes persons whose employment is terminated on various grounds (expiration of fixed-term job contract, failure to accomplish work results prescribed by law, etc.), the NES cannot determine exactly which persons lost their job directly as a consequence of the crisis. How has the pandemic affected employers? — It is a fact that certain sectors have suffered serious consequences due to the impossibility of doing business, most notably



tourism, segments of the retail sector, hospitality industry, hotels, passenger transport etc. Accordingly, the highest number of layoffs were recorded in these economic sectors. On the other hand, some areas of economic activity have experienced dynamic growth and increased demand for labour force, e.g. the pharmaceutical industry, food trade and the production of protective equipment and disinfectants. During the state of emergency, the greatest proportion of new people who registered as unemployed with the NES after the termination of their employment came from wholesale and retail trade and the hospitality industry (restaurants and mobile catering facilities). In 2020, compared to 2019, higher labour demand was recorded in the following sectors: health care and social welfare (increase by 35%), mining (+13%), and real estate (+6%), while the construction sector remained at the 2019 level. Moreover, businesses in the field of information and communication technologies have increased their activities and boosted their operations, primarily in terms of the provision of online services, delivery/distribution of products and online purchase and sale of goods and services.

How much have the government measures helped to stabilize the labour market? — I am sure that it was exactly the measures of the Government of the Republic of Serbia that ensured the economic stability and preserved the existing jobs, because its reaction was timely and well-targeted. Thanks to the help provided to employers, the payment of wages was ensured in the first few months of the pandemic for over a million workers in the Republic of Serbia, which prevented mass layoffs. In January this year, it was noticeable that there was a slight increase in the number of people who registered with NES after the termination of their employment, compared to the same

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

month last year, and we believe that the reason for this was the inability of employers to generate enough profit to pay wages. In the second half of 2020, in cooperation with the National Employment Service, the Government of the Republic of Serbia implemented another anti-crisis measure called 'My First Salary' Youth Employment Promotion Programme. A large number of employers applied for this programme, as did a substantial number of unemployed youth. By the year-end, we managed to find a job for about 8,500 people, of which about 7,200 in the private sector. The comments of all beneficiaries, both employers and young people, have been extremely positive, which is the best evidence of the success of this programme.

Which occupations are in greatest demand, and which are in short supply, i.e. what kind of worker profiles should undergo re-training? — The worker profiles that have the greatest chances in the labour market (based on the number of reported needs for employment of certain worker profiles and the number of unemployed persons of specific educational profiles) and that are most likely to get a job quickly include: university graduates in IT, electrical and software engineers, civil engineers with appropriate licenses, mathematics, physics, foreign language, informatics and computer science teachers, doctors with relevant specializations (anesthesiologist, cardiologist, ophthalmologist, gynecologist), pharmacists, biochemists, and financial experts - accountants. As for secondary education profiles, the following worker profiles are the most in demand: CNC machine operators, welders, accountants, bookkeepers, caregivers, nurses, cooks, electrical and electronics technicians, computer, computer network and telecommunications technicians, security technicians, carpenters, bricklayers etc. The National Employment Service has been coping with the problem of shortage of workers with the required know-how, skills and work experience by providing unemployed persons with further education and training programmes aimed at improving the quality of the workforce, i.e. raising their level of competitiveness and employability. These measures are intended for hard-to-employ individuals, whose occupations are not in demand in the labour market, or persons with

obsolete knowledge and skills, incomplete education or lacking the required competences for specific jobs. Further education and training programmes are organized based on the findings of the labour market analysis and the identified job seeker needs, with a view to enhancing their knowledge and skills and providing them with the training and work experience for specific jobs. During the pandemic, we had a markedly increased demand for medical staff (nurse - technician, nurse - educator, doctor of medicine specializing in pediatrics, caregiver, cleaning staff at hospitals, ambulance driver), as well as education and training professionals (teachers, professors, lecturers), construction workers (mostly construction machine operators), retail sales staff, product packaging workers, tailors, cleaning staff and caregivers.

plementation of numerous labour market measures and programmes. In this way, via a web application, we can organize job fairs and various training sessions. In the forthcoming period, we will carry out all activities as per the recommended epidemiological measures.

How has the pandemic affected working conditions? Will this be taken into account when making plans for 2021 and providing counselling services to the unemployed? — In order to combat the spread of the contagious COVID-19 disease, the NES has enabled its clients to access its services online in terms of registering with the unemployment register, applying for unemployment benefits, requesting working ability assessment, unemployment status certificates, as well as applying for employment subsidies. All information and necessary forms are available on the official website of the National Employment Service. Since the National Employment Service strives to keep up with the current trends and tendencies in the labour market when it comes to the application of modern information technologies, in cooperation with the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), we have been preparing a platform for online im-

the Republic of Serbia, while fulfilling all the requirements in terms of the development and implementation of ex-post analyses of the 20112020 National Employment Strategy, as well as other analytical materials, and ensuring a consultative process throughout the development of the Strategy and the accompanying Action Plan. Certainly, the new strategy should take into account the completely different circumstances in the labour market compared to the situation ten years ago. The adoption of these most important documents in the field of employment policy will certainly serve as a guide for the implementation of the future NES activities. The NES’ financial plan envisages significant funds for the implementation of active labour market policies, which will be directed towards both employers and the unemployed, and which will be more specifically defined by the new National Employment Action Plan. 

What are the NES’ plans for 2021 and what can we expect from the new Employment Strategy that will be adopted? — In order to achieve continuity in the implementation of the employment policy, which should be developed in line with the needs of the national labour market, the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs has started drafting the new Employment Strategy of the Republic of Serbia for the period 2021–2026, in compliance with the Law on the Planning System of

The NES implements further education and training programmes for job profiles that are not in high demand




YOUNG TALENT AS THE PRIORITY FOR LARGE COMPANIES New generations are the driving force behind each society. Their energy creates growth and development, so employers are increasingly motivated to get them on board

For years now, NIS has been organizing multiple youth programs trying to attract talent and create learning opportunities


t could be the accelerated development of new technologies or some other factor, but it is now increasingly hard for the older generations to understand the younger ones. Young people nowadays do not feel like being limited or tied down in any way, which creates new challenges for banks, car sellers, and other businesses whose products involve multiple-year payments. Given that the market is always the first


to react to any changes in society, one of the most pressing questions is how can companies attract young professionals? How to motivate them? And, most importantly, how to retain the young talent? Conventional HR practices fail to overcome this challenge, and most global companies are actively searching for new ideas. Most employers recognize the value of young professionals, their enthusiasm, and out-of-the-box thinking. Young generations are always a driving force behind any society, with their energy and initiative driving development and growth. Companies worldwide are now trying to offer attractive benefits and solutions to get the young minds on board. Some hope to entice talent with new and exciting technology, others with flexible hours and remote work arrangements. What about Serbia? Interestingly enough, one of the first to rise to the challenge here in Serbia was NIS, a company working in the conventional oil and gas industry, but committed to innovation. For years now, the company has been organizing multiple youth programs trying to attract talent, create learning opportu-

nities, and get young professionals to join the team. The most recent one is the NIS Energy program launched in late 2020. It is designed for graduates and master’s students from the faculties for engineering, technical sciences, economics, organizational sciences, mining and geology, electrical engineering, technology, metallurgy, mathematics, and law. The program, adjusted to the current Covid-related limitations, offers the best students one-year paid program in the leading energy company in the region. It allows the participants to apply the knowledge they received in practice, and the company benefits from the new innovative ideas the young talent brings to the table. “The first 16 candidates start their work in February. Our mentors will guide them for the entire duration of the program. Apart from day-to-day work, NIS Energy includes various training courses, lectures, and workshops. Each graduated student will also work on an individual project. The participants will sign one-year contracts with the company, and after the program will get a chance for steady employment,” NIS representatives shared with Diplomacy and Commerce. 

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


SELF-MOTIVATION It seems paradoxical, but now, more than ever, we need human resources to teach managers emotional and social intelligence MILOŠ TOMANOVIĆ Head of INSPIRE for Adriatic Region



NEW ORDER- A SLOW KILLER OR STRONG MOTIVATOR? Isolation, changed working conditions, loneliness, "remote work", social and physical distance… These are the conditions that we live in. Some like it and others don't. Someone’s performance improved, others’ declined. It seems paradoxical, but now, more than ever, we need human resources to teach managers emotional and social intelligence. Managers and executives should spend even more time working with people, and less on their other tasks. In fact, people should be the main task and focus.


Motivation is like a fingerprint, although it is similar at first glance, it is actually very different


Managers keep asking themselves: “How could I know what they do and how they feel when they are out there somewhere? Okay, I can tell what they’re doing through their results, but it's impossible to know how they really feel. In times like these, more than ever we are looking for people who are self-motivated. Are there any? What motivates someone is a very individual thing. Motivation is like a fingerprint in every person, and although it is similar at first glance, it is actually quite different. People have their own finely calibrated system of what really drives them, their reasons for working and giving their maximum while doing so. The impact of the material reward is smaller. Not to be confused, material rewards are very important, but the motivation is far great-

er if the employee can work in their own way, in accordance with their “fingerprint”. That brings us to contemplating about the main driving force which is inside of each of us - the work system and the internal "rules" that we like and we have defined ourselves. Rarely anyone is fully aware of what is true because knowing yourself is the hardest thing. And yet everyone has a certain way of working that makes them unique. Rhythm. Decisions strategies. Assessment methods. Work dynamics. How do I decide? Planning style. The principle of processing information and accepting the "truth", etc. All that makes a person special and it is up to the managers to see, hear and feel what it is like to be in their team. Today, the skill of recognizing the mood and style in which your people like to work, as well as to be guided and to cooperate and communicate with them, is even more necessary.

A MEAL COOKED ONCE IS DONE All these ingredients that make up a person are already formed as a lunch cooked from various ingredients. This is hard to change. And this is why it is easier to adapt and use individual work styles, using what is most important in each person, by discovering what their skills and approach to work are most useful for and how to put individuals in a complementary team. As with putting together a puzzle, so with teamwork, the skill of fitting in diversity is what makes teams the best.

DO YOU KNOW WHAT DRIVES THE PEOPLE ON YOUR TEAMS FROM THE INSIDE? Have you asked yourself whether these approaches occur in one person and how do you know if a per-

son will enjoy working: - according to predefined rules and procedures or do they need more freedom? - in regular jobs that don’t change or expects occasional changes and modernization? - in line with their own ideas or the ideas of others? - by having to decide based on their feelings or according to what the environment thinks? - when someone constantly imposes on their opinions about possible problems or if someone acts irresponsibly because they don’t anticipate problems? - without you showing them and they don’t understand the concept and purpose or if you do not allow them to work in their “small garden” without understanding the concept and purpose? There are many such questions, and depending on the answers to them and the approach you use, a degree of internal motivation is formed in the team members.

HOW TO RECOGNIZE FROM A DISTANCE WHAT ARE TEAM MEMBERS LIKE? The will to work is present when a person works the way that suits them best. To really get to know the people on your team, which is the essence of a great manager, you need skills. You start by asking questions. It’s a great skill to know what kind of questions to ask to find out what the formula is for a self-motivated person. If you succeed in that, then you have found access to that individual. And all you have to do is support in that person everything that is useful for your job, and avoid work that is demotivating for them. In this way, you will fulfil your role as a manager and your employees, regardless of physical distance, will feel great. 

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


THE WORD ‘HUMAN’ TOOK ON A REAL MEANING IN 2020 The pandemic caused by the coronavirus has changed organizations and made human resources professionals to think differently about their role to adapt to social distancing and a new work environment that we could have never imagined before IVANA IVIĆ Head of HR Department, UniCredit Bank Serbia

a joint declaration on remote work – with a view of extending the opportunities offered by technological advances, enabling new ways of working which support a better work-life balance and greater efficiency.


In 2020, in terms of Human Resources, the word “human” took on a real meeting. Now, more than ever before, it is important to listen to the employees, understand their needs in the new environment and show compassion. At the same time, it was vital to ensure business continuity because, for the banking industry, there is no business if we do not serve our clients. For UniCredit, health and safety was the top priority from the very beginning. Thanks to the fact that we have introduced 'smart work' some years ago, complete teams were quickly mobilised to work entirely remotely for a prolonged period. Thus we can say that we were well-prepared. Back in 2017, UniCredit signed first joint declaration on Work- Life Balance that promotes a set of specific, concrete actions to support work-life balance across UniCredit’s operations. New technologies are implemented to make best use of people’s resources, in terms of both skills and time, while respecting their private life. But, at that time, nobody could fathom that one day remote work, that was a privilege at that moment, could become our reality for last 12 months. Thus, three years after, in the pandemic year, and based on the accumulated experience, UniCredit has signed another document -


New technologies are implemented to make best use of people’s resources, in terms of both skills and time, while respecting their private lives

Remote work is here to stay There are already studies that reveal that organizations want more of their onsite employees to continue to work remotely after the pandemic passes. One of the main strengths of an HR professional is building relationships and thus it will be challenging to continue with this practice in the working environment where you do not have everyday contact in person. This will also, to a certain extent, change the nature of the HR’s role. If the company wants to survive, HR professionals should focus on motivation of the employees, sustaining the corporate culture, promote diversity and inclusion and trying to improve the engagement level. To do that, all internal processes should be adapted to the new ways of work in order to maintain work-life balance. Who is the new talent? Now, almost a year after the pandemic started, we can also speak about skills that are the key for the new era of uncertainty. Fast decision-making process, accepting adequate portion of risk and digital literacy proved to be strategic competences. I tend to believe that this new knowledge will influ-

ence also the recruitment process and the way how we discover talent. Namely, certain skills that we were not considering as crucial and that were not valued, are a must for the future. Moreover, this is not just about skills; it is also about certain positions in the different teams that we did not considered as important in banking industry are now absolutely needed. This will also influence the talent acquisition strategy, retention and benefit policies, award programmes, development plans and different ways of engagement of employees.

Future challenges One of the main challenges that HR professionals will have to cope with in the future, when remote work is concerned, is how to set clear boundaries between professional and private life. Recently, the EU lawmakers passed a non-binding resolution arguing that individuals have a fundamental "right to disconnect." We have also addressed this topic in UniCredit’s promotion of work-life balance. We have started an internal campaign, reminding all colleagues every Friday via e-mail that they should turn off their computers and start their weekend on time. Another internal campaign is dedicated to managers whom we encourage to continue caring for our people they are in contact with every day through respecting working hours and helping that team not to take their work home. 










We will work on process automation, strengthening and developing our organization, boosting the brand and positioning Gebrüder Weiss as a desirable employer




The Human Resources Manager at Gebrüder Weiss READ THIS ON WEB

he long history of Gebrüder Weiss has given us confidence in challenging moments and brought us back to what is right. The pandemic has brought into question first the health of the population and then the economy, but we should always learn from such unforeseen situations, and if possible use them as a training ground,” says Marija Kosanović, the Human Resources Manager at Gebrüder Weiss, for the February issue of D&C magazine.


The coronavirus pandemic has led to the closure of many borders worldwide. How has this affected the way Gebrüder Weiss organized the work for its employees who are primarily involved in transportation? — The coronavirus pandemic has brought the whole world to its knees and brought into question first of all health and then the economy, stability and sustainability. We faced various challenges; some really seemed unsolvable, but still, from today's perspective, that was a training ground for learning, development and adaptation. We have learned that it is possible to organize remote work and provide good and quality service in changed business conditions, that timely and clear communication is crucial, and that flexibility is extremely important, in every sense of the word. We often fall back on the company’s long history and that gives us strength, instils confidence and


points us in the right direction.

What work challenges did your employees most often encounter (if they have worked from home) during the pandemic, and how did you respond to their needs? Did you have to introduce any innovations in the work organization? — Working from home was once considered a good and important benefit. Many organizations worked in this way to establish a balance between private and professional lives of their employees. In such changed circumstances, when almost all family members work or study from home, we can hardly talk about balance. In that sense, our employees mostly had doubts on how to organize a working day and fulfil work tasks within the set deadline. As a company focused on service excellence and for which customers are an important part of the business, the biggest challenge was to maintain that kind of balance, i.e. to keep customers satisfied, to meet their expectations, on the one hand, and to recognize and meet the needs of our employees, on the other.

our employees and that is very important to us. Integrity, dedication, teamwork and flexibility are just some of the values that make our team strong and the working environment inspiring. We listen to the needs of our employees, recognize them, encourage employees to develop and learn and reward initiative and good results.

What are your goals when it comes to the HR sector for 2021? — The company’s goal is to continue having a stable and sustainable business, innovation and digitalization which also correspond to the goals of the HR sector. We will work on process automation, strengthening and developing the organization, boosting the brand and positioning Gebrüder Weiss as a desirable employer. 

The company’s goal is to continue having a stable and sustainable business, innovation and digitalization which also correspond to the goals of the HR sector

The success of every company is due to the people who work for it. The pandemic aside, how does Gebrüder Weiss motivate its employees and contribute to making work for this company a pleasure? — We share the same values with

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs





Employees should always be treated beyond just the work environment and the goal is to provide them the opportunity to fully enjoy the most significant moments in their lives KRUNA GAVOVIĆ Marketing and Academy Director at TMS CEE and CEO at The Lean Six Sigma Company

bout importance of balancing career and free time and difficulties harmonizing family, social life, working time etc, we spoke with Kruna Gavović, Marketing and Academy Director at TMS CEE and CEO at The Lean Six Sigma Company. She pointed out that the employees are crucial for work processes, and people want to work for organizations that show respect for work-life balance.


Why is especially nowadays work-life balance so important? — The biggest challenge that every employee has, is balancing their career, family, free time and social life. The disbalance may affect both, the employees and the companies they work for, by, for example, the higher stress related health problems and lower work productivity. Employees should always be treated beyond just the work environment and the goal is to provide them the opportunity to fully enjoy the most significant moments in their lives. The employees are crucial for work processes and long-term success of a company. When we recognize the employees with their emotional and social aspect, we also increase their loyalty. Our experience shows that people want to work for organizations that show respect for work-life balance.

How can your company TMS CEE help us achieve the work-life-balance? — The concept of a proper work-private life balance has been created in Germany more than twenty years ago. Now, through TMS CEE, together with our partner from Slovenia, Family-Friendly Enterprise scheme is also available to companies in Serbia. Through Family Friendly Enterprise, companies can introduce this concept quickly and easily into their world and al-

low their staff to live and work according to the best practices of European companies. Thousands of workers in Serbia are today working in companies with implemented Family Friendly Enterprise concept. At the same time, their work is more humane and pleasant, and the company’s reputation and productivity has increased. FFE concept has been implemented in Serbia by leading companies in the fields of telecommunications, finance, media, FMCG and IT. FFE certificate is a long-term consultation process, which provides positive effects that go beyond reconciling work and private life of employees and clearly reflect competitive advantages with positive economic effects for organizations and longterm effects for the society.

Since you are a mother, can you tell us how much is difficult for women to achieve work-life balance? — It is not easy for a woman to harmonize her family, career, social life and free time. Nowadays we need a huge energy to achieve the balance in our life. It is ever more important to work within the responsible organization that creates the environment that supports mothers through flexible working hours, plan of reintegration to work after childbirth, free time during the working hours for breastfeeding, etc. The need for work-life-balance affects not only women, but also the men. Accordingly, we need to invest in the happiness of employees, and, as we always say, we need to change the culture of cooperation with employees, which means shifting from seeing an employee as a human resource to seeing an employee as a human being, so both the employees and the company can win! 

The biggest challenge that every employee has, is balancing their career, family, free time and social life





Eastern European Migrants Stop Coming to Britain Brexit did not persuade them to depart, but an economic slump might Lena Hrabovenska, who owns several Polish food shops in Huntingdon and Peterborough, shudders to remember the Brexit referendum in 2016. The campaign to leave the EU had unleashed ugly prejudices. Cards about “Polish vermin” were posted through letterboxes. Her customers seemed despondent, asking: “what’s the point of being here if we’re not appreciated?” Soon afterwards, eastern Europeans’ numbers started to decline, but not because they rushed for the exit. Eight Baltic and eastern European countries joined the EU in 2004: the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia. Many of their citizens moved to Britain, which, unlike most European countries, imposed no transitional controls. But according to the Labour Force Survey, the number of adults in England and Wales born in those countries has fallen from 1,139,000 in 2016-17 to 926,000 (see chart). Other data tell a similar story. Last year fewer than 17,000 babies were born to Polish women—down from almost 23,000 in 2015. The Brexit vote caused sterling to fall, reducing the purchasing power of remittances sent from Britain. Two years later the government told people who wanted to settle to prove they had been mostly resident for five years in a row—a test that some found offputting. “You are treated as a number,” says Aga Dychton, a Polish immigrant who is now chairman of Watford borough council. Yet all Europeans face these problems. The number of French, German and Italian immigrants has not fallen much; nor has the number of Bulgarians and Romanians, who have been able to work in Britain since 2014. The countries that joined the EU 16 years ago have changed in a way that makes Britain seem less attractive. Marius Vainauskar, who moved to Britain in 2005 to take a job sticking labels on vegetables, remembers that he used




THE COUNTRIES THAT JOINED THE EU 16 YEARS AGO HAVE CHANGED IN A WAY THAT MAKES BRITAIN SEEM LESS ATTRACTIVE to feel rich when he went back to Lithuania. Today he has a better job, as a driving instructor, but no longer feels so flush. Over the past 16 years the average wage in Lithuania has risen from 41% of the British level to 61%, at purchasing-power parity. And many eastern Europeans are underemployed in Britain. The Oxford Migration Observatory, a think-tank, finds they have the lowest pay of any migrant group and are the most likely to be overqualified for the jobs they do. Ruta Dalton, an accountant originally from Lithuania, suspects that Brexit itself persuaded few eastern Europeans to depart. Some have left—but most of them would have gone anyway, pulled back by family obligations or simply because they had saved as much money as they wanted to. The big change is that many fewer eastern Europeans are coming. Last year only 77,000 people from the 2004 accession countries received a British National Insurance number. In 2015, the year be-

fore the Brexit vote, 185,000 did so. This is not exactly a ringing endorsement of the “global Britain” that Boris Johnson boasts about. But attracting eastern Europeans would be getting harder even if sterling and the economy were strong and Britain went easy on the immigration paperwork. A baby bust after the fall of the Iron Curtain and years of emigration means there are fewer potential migrants left in eastern Europe. The United Nations estimates that the number of 18-year-olds in Poland has fallen from 598,000 to 340,000 since 2005. NEW CUSTOMERS Some immigrants are still arriving in Lincoln Road, the traditional starting-off point for newcomers in Peterborough. Shops that once specialised in Polish food now sell Romanian products. And Petr Torak, a former police officer who now runs a community centre, says that Roma from the Czech Republic and Slovakia are settling in the area. Unlike the

Poles and Lithuanians who came before, they are fleeing persecution as well as looking for jobs. He struggles to imagine them returning to their homelands. Ms Hrabovenska’s shops are doing fine for now. But, like a good businesswoman, she worries about the future. What will happen if Britain enters a prolonged economic slump and unemployment soars? If everyone ends up counting their pennies, she thinks, the eastern Europeans really will leave in a hurry. “They can count pennies in their own country,” she says.

From The Economist, published under licence. The original article, in English, can be found on www.economist.com

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


by Ivana Karanović

Homophobic Candidates Have No Place in Our Team A domestic IT company is fighting for the rights of the LGBTQ + population in Serbia NENAD MILANOVIĆ CEO of COING

erbian IT company COING, which is the creator of the world's leading software tool for monitoring working hours called Clockify and a team communication tool Pumble, has introduced a non-standard novelty in its process of selecting future employees - revealing homophobic attitudes of candidates during job interviews. In order to achieve that, during a job interview in this software company, candidates have to answer the following questions: “What do you think about the LGBTQ+ population?”, “What do you think about the position of the LGBTQ+ community in Serbia?” and the like. Depending on the answer, various sub-questions follow, all with the aim of determining a clear position of the candidate, i.e. whether there is and how pronounced is the degree of their propensity for discrimination. The answers to these questions are crucial in deciding whether a candidate will be rated as a desirable member of the company’s team. The company’s persistence in the fight against homophobia and discrimination is also demonstrated by the fact that, in the early 2021, it went a step further and publicly launched an initiative not to hire people who spread homophobic ideas and attitudes. This move is a novelty on our IT scene and with domestic companies in general. Nenad Milanović, the company’s CEO, talks more about it, while highlighting that the atmosphere in COING is liberal and inclusive, and that the company has decided to take that step because of their employees, as well as their global activities and the fact that people who use their applications come from various religions, races and sexual orientations. “We work and hang out with our colleagues in a relaxed atmosphere. As our employees feel com-

Photo: Private archive



AS A SOCIETY, WE HAVE MANY PROBLEMS AND WE NEED TO SOLVE THEM ONE BY ONE fortable talking about their problems, it quickly became clear that about 10 percent of our colleagues belong to the LGBTQ+ population. By launching an initiative not to employ people who cultivate homophobic ideas and attitudes, we are fighting, first and foremost, for the rights of our colleagues,” Nenad points out and adds that in any company in the world, between 5 to 10 percent of employees are members of the LGBTQ+ population but are hiding that fact from their colleagues and employers. As Nenad says, their insight into the existing research shows that as many as 49% of the population of Serbia is homophobic: “Although Serbia has made good progress on these issues, there is still a lot of work to be done. Due to the various political and economic challenges we have gone through, the current figures are nothing to be proud of. As a

society, we have many problems and we need to solve them one by one. The rights of the LGBTQ+ population are a problem that we can solve quickly and easily without spending taxpayers' money. Challenges that are that easily resolved should become our priority.” The experiences so far regarding job interviews in COING have shown that every fourth candidate has expressed intolerance. “We employ people based on a set of criteria which define the required skills and competencies needed for a specific position, as well as the way the job is done. When we recognize that someone may be discriminatory or intolerant of our employees, customers or clients, our conclusion is that that person would not be successful in their work and based on that we do not enter into an employment relationship with them. As of recently, in our job vacancy

ads, we have been clearly stating the "do not apply" policy for people who believe that members of the LGBTQ+ population in Serbia should not be allowed to marry or exercise other rights that they are entitled to,” says the founder of COING. In addition to homophobia, the company actively fights against all forms of stereotypes and discrimination, and since almost 50% of their employees are women, they intensively promote women's rights too. “Misogynist jokes and jokes based on stereotypes about women are not welcome in our team. When it comes to romantic relationships within a collective, they are generally welcome except among employees who work in the same chain of command No manager (male or female) can forge a relationship with a member of the team that they manage directly or indirectly,” says Nenad and underlines that urgent modification of all laws should be carried out in Serbia so that they become more gender neutral. “Members of the LGBTQ+ community must be allowed to marry and have children, as well as exercise all other rights that heterosexual individuals have,” says Mr. Milanović, adding that all companies should use their influence in the best possible way. “Close your doors to homophobes and send a clear message that you don’t tolerate discrimination in any form. Although you probably don't know it, at least 10% of your employees are members of the LGBTQ+ population, so you are fighting for their rights. Enable your colleagues to be who they really are.. As long as there are discussions about the rights of the LGBTQ+ community in Serbia, we cannot call ourselves a cool country. If we analyze global trends, there is a very clear correlation between tolerance and economic development of society. Tolerant countries are more economically successful,” Mr. Milanović says.










A New Experience of Kopaonik La Pista restaurant by Gorski Hotel&Spa ith its opening three years ago, Gorski Hotel&Spa brought new energy to Kopaonik. Energy so strong that the service and the concept of hospitality and hotel industry have been permanently raised to a higher level both at the destination and in the whole country. Gorski has become synonymous with good taste, even better service and the best skiing experience. A place where you have to



be. A combination of the comfort of the largest rooms on Kopaonik, the enchanting mountain interior, the top spa, the unpredictable

a place with the best food, desserts and service, in Gorski they decided to, according to the already well-known pattern, move

tel opened an exclusive à la carte restaurant of Italian cuisine - La Pista. As its name suggests, the restaurant is located on the Malo

DEFINITELY, LA PISTA, JUST LIKE GORSKI HOTEL&SPA, WILL RAISE THE LEVEL OF SERVICE, EXPECTATIONS AND CONTRIBUTE TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF KOPAONIK AS A DESTINATION magic of the tucked-in outdoor pool and the gastronomic magic that makes people come back. After profiling themselves as

the boundries and bring a new experience, unprecedented on Kopaonik. Therefore, this winter, the ho-

jezero trail, within the hotel. The recognizable architecture and interior design allows guests to enjoy the exceptional view and at-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

mosphere while enjoing a fine dining experience that has not existed before on Kopaonik. The entire interior is made of carefully selected materials, just like Gorski Hotel&Spa. Natural wood will dominate all around you and spread the well-known smell of the mountain. Fireplace, dim lights, terrace, view of the snowy trails - idyllic, right? The uniqueness of the restaurant is diverse. Perhaps the most important thing to start with is the fact that all food is prepared exclusively from Italian ingredients of the first category. Groceries are delivered exclusively for the needs of the restaurant directly from Italy. In addition to the most famous Italian food brands, which everyone expects in a restaurant like this, there are also groceries produced in small manufactories where the entire production is already reserved for La Pista. All this means only one thing - everything you order in La Pista will be an experi-

ence that is impossible to repeat elsewhere! The restaurant operates in two regimes - daily and evening. Just as the guests of Kopaonik like the most, during the day everything is subordinated to skiing. Therefore, La Pista is an ideal place to gather for a short break from skiing. With pizzas, pastas, risottos or traditional cooked dish-

plemented by a quiet live performance of jazz, blues and pop music will give you the pleasure of Italy, Kopaonik, the mountains and sophistication together. The menu will be different from the daily one and provide an unusual experience of the table show: flambéing fish in salt crust with VSOP Cognac, steak that the Chef cuts in front of the guests

dishes, La Pista thought of that as well. The unique concept of the chef's experience menu will take you on a journey through the regions of Italy through six traces of mono portions. This way you will have the opportunity to enjoy all the best tastes. The variety of ingredients, preparation techniques in harmony with the wines that sommelier will pair for you, are

PERHAPS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO START WITH IS THE FACT THAT ALL FOOD IS PREPARED EXCLUSIVELY FROM ITALIAN INGREDIENTS OF THE FIRST CATEGORY es from the Italian mountains, on the spacious terrace and in front of the trail, the experience will be complete. In the evenings, La Pista will turn into an elegant, fine-dining place, with service and food that you could expect so far only in the finest restaurants in Belgrade. An intimate and romantic atmosphere by the fireplace, com-

and serves with Table grill, giving guests the opportunity to finish prepairing their own meat, making pasta into a 32-month-old cheese roll, serving a dessert with a liquid nitrogen smoke show and many other experiences seen at the world’s best restaurants. If your appetite has already increased and you are wondering how you will get to try all the

going to tkae your breat away. Definitely, La Pista, just like Gorski Hotel&Spa, will raise the level of service, expectations and contribute to the development of Kopaonik as a destination, and provide each individual with an unforgettable experience that they will remember for a long time and to whom they will gladly return.



by Daniel Einhäuser

Why Purpose Matters for Investors? Controversial message that the professor at the University of Chicago sent - Companies have no social responsibility years ago, in September 1970, Milton Friedman published his famous article “A Friedman Doctrine – The Social Responsibility Of Business Is to Increase Its Profits” in The New York Times. It was a controversial message that the professor at the University of Chicago sent: Companies have no social responsibility but only a responsibility to their shareholders, which is to make as much profit as possible. Exercising social responsibility would reduce profits and therefore would not be in line with shareholders’ interest of maximizing returns. Hence, socially responsible behaviour is only expected from individuals and Governments. The fundamental idea, that activities of corporate executives need to be synchronized with the interests of their company’s shareholders contributed to the shareholder value concept, which basically aims at increasing the financial returns for shareholders. Consequently, management was incentivized accordingly, which increased executive remuneration, made share buybacks a popular tool and generally sparked a management behaviour that at times was driven by short-term action rather than a long-term strategy. But here we are: half a century after Friedman’s article and times have changed. The Generation Z is influencing consumption patterns and a young girl from Sweden laid the foundation to the global movement “Fridays for Future” which had a significant impact on the political discourse. And because some CEOs and Fund Managers (male and female) have children that sympathize with Greta Thumberg there is mounting pressure by the younger generation towards their parents questioning how sustainable they earn their money. The pure capitalism without or only with limited social responsibility seems to




A COMPANY CANNOT ACHIEVE LONG-TERM PROFITS WITHOUT EMBRACING PURPOSE AND CONSIDERING THE NEEDS OF A BROAD RANGE OF STAKEHOLDERS have brought the purpose of organizations back into the discussion. The question is, whether the purpose of an organization is only a ‘nice-to-have’ and merely a feel good factor or actually critical to the business? Larry Fink, CEO of BlackRock, the world’s largest Asset Management Company, answered that question clearly in a letter to CEOs last year, claiming that „… a company cannot achieve long-term profits without embracing purpose and considering the needs of a broad range of stakeholders.“ BlackRock has more than seven trillion US Dollars under management and this would suggest that its CEO’s view matters. Companies now know, that pursuing a

purpose and good cause is not just a good statement in the annual report but a prerequisite in order to be a relevant investment target for Black Rock – and probably many other investment firms as well. Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria for responsible investment are of increasing importance. The KfW, for instance, has been including ESG criteria in their investment decisions since 2008. The independent network “Principles for Responsible Investment” (PRI) which is supported and was founded in 2006 by the UN provides a voluntary set of rules as a framework to incorporate ESG into investment decisions. It has been signed by more

than 3000 (financial) institutions that adhere to the six PRI Principles when making their investment decisions. These Principles basically commit signatories to incorporate ESG into their analysis, decision making and overall processes, to seek disclosure by investment companies and collaborate as well as promote ESG externally. Many big investment companies are participants of PRI and it comes as no surprise that BlackRock has been amongst the signatories since October 2008 which is logically linked to their CEO’s letter about corporations with purpose. But what exactly is a purpose? Let´s have a closer look at what it actually means and also what

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

impact it will have if an organization identifies, articulates and lives its purpose. The purpose of an organization defines its contribution to the world. It answers two critical questions: What are we here for? What would the world be missing if we weren’t here? It is not, as sometimes stated, an enterprise’s reason for being because the reason looks backwards and asks for the past events and circumstances that make the company do what it’s doing. The purpose goes beyond that, by looking into the future giving a corporation direction rather than trying to find the reason for being on the journey. This, however, is not to be confused with a target but is rather an aspirational direction that ignites a fire with everyone who is a stakeholder of the company, so not only its shareholders and management but also customers, suppliers, the entire workforce and the local community. The purpose needs to contribute to a greater good, something that helps to make this planet a better one in order to make people follow it passionately. In particular, the younger generations such as the Millennials and Gen Z have got this strong desire to do good at work and not only to make money to pay the rent. By focussing everyone’s attention behind one worthwhile direction, the purpose also creates a sense of belonging. Working towards achieving the purpose, means success for the company and at the same time pursuing a good cause. Milton Friedman would certainly challenge that statement but there is evidence of a positive correlation between showing social responsibility and pursuing a purpose on one side and being financially successful on the other. Larry Finck is of the view that “Companies that fulfil their purpose and responsibilities to stakeholders reap rewards over the long-term” and a research paper by Harvard Business School (George Serafeim, “Public Sentiment and the Price of Corporate Sustainability”, HBS, 2018) states that a company’s positive sustainability performance leads to a higher valuation premium. So purpose and sustainability can make a company more valuable. Companies with a strong purpose do also have an advantage

in attracting talent. “Many people—not just Millennials—want to work for organizations whose missions and business philosophies resonate with them intellectually and emotionally.“ (Sally Blount, Paul Leinwand, Harward Business Review Nov/Dez 2019). The well-educated talents do not primarily look for an attractive remuneration package but require that their own philosophy of life matches their employer’s purpose. The “Generation Greta”, daughters and sons of the Baby Boomers, born in the 1960s, grew up in Western Europe in peace and financial security. When they leave universities to take over their parent’s generation’s jobs

(Deloitte consumer pulsing survey conducted in United States, United Kingdom, China, and Brazil in 2019). And, for many companies, sustainability as a key purpose driver is becoming a must. Danone, one of the biggest food companies in the world, aims to become an “Entreprise à mission” and obliges itself to adhere to certain ecological and social standards. (Lebensmittelzeitung, 27.11.2020). This goes far beyond profit maximization, however, initiatives like the one Danone is taking, might as well boost profits. 28% of consumers consider the way a company treats its employees a factor that influences brand

buy into it. Any “greenwashing” or business conduct that does not support the heroic words of the purpose do more harm than good. Ideally, the purpose is derived from the company’s founders and their spirit and is emotionally attached to the business already. Simple – the purpose statement will be communicated to a variety of people, from the employees who know everything about the business to consumers and shareholders that take an outside perspective at the company. All of them need to understand and be able to buy-into the purpose so it has to be phrased straight forward and simple, reading smoothly. Individual – a purpose needs to inspire and therefore needs to allow for broad thinking; too much of it, however, will make it interchangeable. A purpose that could be valid for all competitors in the same segment doesn’t differentiate. If it is too narrowly linked to the actual business, companies run the risk of creating another objective rather than a purpose. Therefore, it needs to be unique to the company and yet leave enough freedom to be inspirational. So if a purpose makes an organization financially more successful, attracts new customers and helps to find the best talent,

HOW QUICKLY CONSUMER PREFERENCES WILL CHANGE, SHOWS A STUDY BY DELOITTE, THAT FINDS THAT ALREADY 55% OF RESPONDENTS “BELIEVE THAT BUSINESSES TODAY HAVE A GREATER RESPONSIBILITY TO ACT ON ISSUES RELATED TO THEIR PURPOSE” they will place sustainability and what their employer does to make the world a better place at the top of their priority list. Milton Friedman Consumers increasingly demand brands that communicate and live a purpose they can connect with. This development is accelerated by the fact that the millennials contribute a growing share to the overall consumption as they already represent 35% of the workforce (Black Rock, Larry Finck, Letter to CEOs 2019). And this proportion can only be expected to grow when Gen Z starts spending their sustainably earned money. How quickly consumer preferences will change, shows a study by Deloitte, that finds that already 55% of respondents “believe that businesses today have a greater responsibility to act on issues related to their purpose.”

choice, 20% think environmental impact and 19% behaviour in the local community are important factors when they decide for a brand, according to Deloitte. Against this background, it is not surprising that companies are discussing the topic currently and consider to ‘give’ themselves a purpose. There is an inherent risk, however, that it won’t work if the purpose doesn’t fulfil a few important criteria: Authentic – if an organization’s purpose isn’t routed in its DNA and heritage and the business model does not support the purpose, the stakeholders won’t

it will make it also more attractive to investors. Which means that Black Rock might actually be serious when they claim to be making the corporate purpose of investment companies a priority. Since investors not only look to invest in certain business models and financial criteria but also in ventures that follow a defined set of values encapsulated in the purpose, congruence in this respect between investor and venture is gaining importance. This is why purpose matters and needs to be at the top of the executives’ priority list – in particular when they are seeking new investors.

ABOUT AUTHOR Daniel Einhäuser has 25 years of international management experience. He is helping companies on strategy, brand building as well as to articulate their purpose. He is also an executive coach supporting leaders to become more effective in their work.




"Artists from Serbia for Glina, Petrinja and Sisak" Diplomacy&Commerce magazine's humanitarian campaign successfully completed

Robert Čoban, H.E. Hidajet Biščević and Frano Lasić

Svetislav Bule Goncić and Milan Marković

Brankica Janković and H.E. Hidajet Biščević

Dubravka Negre and Theodora Aretaki

Veran Matić and H.E. Hidajet Biščević

n 1st February, in cooperation with the Croatian Business Club in Belgrade, Croatian Ambassador to Serbia, H.E. Hidajet Biščević, and several other artists and public figures from Serbia, Diplomacy&Commerce successfully completed the humanitarian campaign involving the sale paintings and photographs titled "Artists from Serbia for Glina,



Petrinja and Sisak - painters and photographers for the people affected by the earthquake in Croatia." The following artists – painters and photographers – donated their artwork: Cile Marinković, Biljana Cincarević, Janoš Mesaroš, Jelena Blečić, Dragan Stojkov, Milutin Obradović, Nenad Kojić, Sead Zejnelagić, Milena Zevu, Milena Lasić, Siniša Kadić, Sev-

er Zolak, Miša Obradović, Marko Krunić, Nebojša Babić, Brian Rašić, Mario Leone Bralić, Joškin Šiljan, Vanja Rebić, Milan Marković, Theodora Aretaki, Teodora Bradić, Vuk Vučković, Mila Gvardiol, Tadija Janičić, Aleksandar Spasić, Andjela Verkić, Sandra Janjatović, Renata Bujić, Kolja Božović and Croatian Ambassador to Serbia, H.E. Hidajet Biščević. A total of 39 works of art

were offered for sale for humanitarian purposes, of which 26 pieces from 21 artists were sold. During the campaign that lasted from 8th January to 1st February 2021, over 800,000 dinars was raised. All the proceeds will be donated to the people affected by the terrible earthquakes in Croatia. Robert Čoban, CPG President, the initiator of this humanitari-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

Jovana Marković and Renata Bujić

Dragan Stojkov and Duška Jovanić

Ruža Veljović and Tanja Banković

Robert Čoban and Croatian Ambassador

Boris Najdanović and Mario Leone Bradić

Vuk Vučković and Tanja Banković

Vanja Kovačev and Cile Marinković

Mila Gvardiol and Marija Pasuljević

Nenad Kojić and Igor Tadić

Dragana Radović, Frano Lasić and Milena Lasić Ruža Veljović and Sead Zejnelagić

an campaign, said: "When a series of earthquakes hit Croatia, we thought about the best way to help. We decided to start a humanitarian sale of paintings and artistic photographs from artists in Serbia and in that way, show how much we care „for the neighbour's grass to be as green as ours“, as one election slogan used to say. We had managed to animate two groups of people that

our magazine brings together artists and business people. The first donated their artwork and the second bought it, and then donated the entire amount to the people affected by the earthquake in Croatia. We think that the media's role in such situations is to do what we did, that is to incite the public to get as many people involved and help." Croatian Ambassador to Ser-

bia, H.E. Hidajet Biščević, said: "I am extremely glad that this humanitarian campaign has had such a good response. Considering that we live in challenging and difficult circumstances, the reaction of the Serbian public was astonishing, and the readiness of a large number of Serbian artists to respond and contribute to this campaign validates that the kind of humanity and sol-

Saša Popović and Miša Obradović

idarity that we really need and that we have to build patiently particularly in regard to the overall relations between our two countries." At the Embassy of the Republic of Croatia, at the gathering organised in line with all recommended epidemiological measures, artists presented their paintings to their buyers. Singer and actor Frano Lasić was the event's host.



25 JAN


On Friday, January 22, Germany and France marked the 58th anniversary of the Elysee Treaty, signed in 1963 by the Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and President Charles de Gaulle, with the aim of uniting two peoples separated by three bloody wars and mutual mistrust. The agreement was supplemented by an additional agreement signed in 2019 in Aachen by President Emmanuel Macron and Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel. In Belgrade, the ambassadors of Germany and France, H.E. Thomas Schieb and H.E. Jean-Louis Falconi respectively, commemorated the anniversary. The basis for this reconciliation agreement was the strong, unreserved political will and vision of the two political leaders who believed that Europe's future depended not only on peace but also on mutual trust and active cooperation at all levels. The founding of the European Union is actually closely associated with the proactive reconciliation between France and Germany.

26 JAN


H.E. Jean-Louis Falconi and H.E. Thomas Schieb

On the occasion of the 72nd anniversary of the establishment of the Republic of India, the ambassador of this South Asian country in Belgrade, H.E. Subrata Bhattacharjee, hosted a small celebration on the Embassy’s premises due to the ongoing epidemiological situation. The Day

of the Republic of India is celebrated every year on January 26, marking the day when the Constitution of India came into force in 1950, a document which regulates the state system and thus replaced the Act of the Government of India from 1935.

H.E. Subrata Bhattacharjee

27 JAN


Minister of Trade, Telecommunications and Tourism Tatjana Matić, Minister of European Integration Jadranka Joksimović and Director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Zsuzsanna Hargitai signed the Agreement on the donation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development for the project "Broadband Internet in Rural Areas in Serbia". The agreement on the realisation of the project which will introduce broadband internet in rural areas was signed in the Palace of Serbia in the presence of the Ambassador of Austria, H.E. Nikolaus Lutterotti and Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia, H.E. Sem Fabrizi. The donation is intended for the preparation of project technical documentation, and will cover 90,000 households in 600 settlements throughout Serbia.


Zsuzsanna Hargitai, Tatjana Matić, Jadranka Joksimović and H.E. Sem Fabrizi

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


27 JAN


The Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs in the Government of the Republic of Serbia, Darija Kisić Tepavčević, laid a wreath on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Serbia at the Monument to the Victims of Genocide in World War II at the Old Fair in Belgrade. Wreaths were laid were also laid by the envoy of the President of the Republic of Serbia and his Secretary General, Suzana Paunović, and as an envoy of the Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, the

Darija Kisić Tepavčević

27 JAN

04 FEB


Assembly’s Deputy Speaker, Vladimir Orlić. Deputy Mayor of Belgrade Goran Vesić, representatives of the Association of Jewish Communities, the Jewish Community of Belgrade, the National Council of the Roma National Minority, the Jewish Community of Zemun, associations and the diplomatic corps also paid tribute to the victims of the Holocaust. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day was established on November 1, 2005 by a resolution of the United Nations General Assembly.

Vladimir Orlić, Darija Kisić Tepavčević and Goran Vesić

The solemn ceremony of unveiling the monument to one of the most important Serbian rulers, the founder of the medieval Serbian state, the great prefect Stefan Nemanja, was held on Sava Square in Belgrade. The ceremony, which began with the intonation of the Serbian anthem, was attended by President of the Republic of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić, Prime Minister Ana Brnabić, ministers in the Serbian government, Speaker of the Serbian National Assembly Ivica Dačić and Serbi-

an member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina Milorad Dodik. Also present were Belgrade Mayor Zoran Radojičić, Deputy Mayor Goran Vesić, dignitaries of the Serbian Orthodox Church, representatives of the diplomatic corps, Banja Luka Mayor Draško Stanivuković and many others. On that occasion, Vučić pointed out that this ceremony is not just an act of unveiling the monument, but an act of taking care of oneself and one's identity.


On February 4th 2021 Delta Holding celebrated its 30 year-anniversary. During the last 3 decades the company has made 2.5 billion euro in revenue and has been reinvesting that money in Serbia and neighbouring countries. ’’What separates Delta from other companies is knowledge and ability to create businesses and increase their value, as well as sell them when the conditions are met.’’ said Marija Desivojevic Cvetkovic, Delta’s Senior Vice President for Strategy and Development. ’’Qualified and motivated employees are what enables our company to operate this way. This is the reason we believe that people are Delta’s biggest value,” she said. • 35,000 people have worked in Delta • 2.5 billion euro of investments • 3 billion euro in paid taxes to the budget of Republic of Serbia (since 2000) • 39 million euro worth of CSR activities (since 2007, the year Delta Foundation was established) • Total revenue of 24 billion euro



Vojvodina has an Important Role to Play in Serbia's Development Vojvodina has managed to sustain a good economic environment during the corona virus pandemic he Vojvodina in 2021 conference was held on February 3 at the Assembly of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina under the auspices of the Vojvodinian government. The conference is recognized as an event that discusses issues whixh are important for the development of Vojvodina in the coming year.Participants were the members of Vojvodinian government, ambassadors, economic experts and leading business people from Vojvodina. This year, MK Group, DDOR Osiguranje and Heineken were the conference’s friends. Robert Čoban, CPG President stated that the conference would focus on what Europe will look like after the pandemic, as well as how the pandemic affected health, culture, tourism and the economy. President of the Provincial Government, Igor Mirović, stated that Vojvodina was much more ready to face the crisis caused by the coronavirus: “Next year we plan to complete the Kamenica 3 health institute. We are also in the process of drafting project documentation for procurement of equipment for a new children's hospital

at the Vojvodina Institute for Children and Youth Health Protection. Furthermore, we plan to start the reconstruction of the General Hospital in Kikinda, and in the next two and a half finish the B and C blocks of the Clinical Centre of Vojvodina," said Mr Mirović. The head of the EU Delegation to Serbia, Sem Fabrizi, stated that the European Union supported the Western Balkans during

Sem Fabrizi, EU

Igor Mirović


Nenad Ivanišević


the coronavirus pandemic with 750 million euro of macro-financial assistance and financial assistance package in the amount of 1.7 billion euro provided by the EIB. He also underlined that Vojvodina, apart from its great economic, agricultural and cultural wealth, plays an important role in the process of Serbia’s recovery, but also of the wider region. During the conference, five

Robert Čoban, CPG

Giorgio Marchegiani

panel discussions were held which covered the situation in Europe after the pandemic, cultural activities in “the new normal", health, economy and tourism in 2021. There was also a panel discussion during which mayors and presidents of Vojvodina’s towns and municipalities exchanged experiences about their work at the local level. The following officials also took part in the conference - the Provincial Secretary for Regional Development, Interregional Cooperation and Local Self-Government, Aleksandar Sofić, Croatian Ambassador to Serbia, H.E. Hidajet Biščević, Director of the European Affairs (Evropski Poslovi) Fund of the AP Vojvodina, Aleksandar Simurdić, Coordinator of the National Convention on the European Union, Nataša Dragojlović, Provincial Secretary for Economy and Tourism, Nenad Ivanišević, President of the Chamber of Commerce of Vojvodina. Boško Vučurević, Chairman of the Executive Board of DDOR Osiguranje, Giorgio Marchegiani, Assistant Provincial Secretary for Health, Dr Snežana Bojanić, Provincial Secretary for Culture, Public Information and Relations with Religious Communities, Dragana Milošević and many others.

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


01 FEB


On February 1, the Outstanding People of 2020 award ceremony was held in the great hall of the Kolarac Endowment, while adhering to the current epidemiological measures. The event was produced by Fabrika agency. The outstanding people of 2020 were the ones who "inspired and motivated positive social changes", people who stand out with their authentic and a positive attitude towards life and work, and who, as such, should be a role model for young people and the general public. Thanks to the laureates, but also to the esteemed jury members, the event has become recognizable, credible, prestigious, and attractive to the media. It encourages the importance of true social responsibility. The award is given to individuals who, through the way they live and work (regardless of their job), promote true values (talent, authenticity, entrepreneurship, courage, success and perseverance, generosity, innovation…) and thus contribute to the visibility and significance of different “cultural currents” in our society, which stand apart from the louder and more visible “currents of superficiality and bad taste”.

Awards Winners: "Outstanding people of 2020"

H.E. Ilir Boçka with his wife

Ivan Medenica

Aleksandar Kavčić

Brankica Janković and H.E. Sem Fabrizi with wife

Vesna Čipčić and Katarina Žutić



by Žikica Milošević

The Czech Embassy The gem of functionalism and cubism


fter the First World War, two new Slavic states sprang up on the ruins of Austro-Hungarian Empire Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia (the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes). There were no two better friends in Europe than these two countries. The Czech embassy in Belgrade was built in a prestigious location, especially to serve a diplomatic mission. The building is quite monumental and living proof of this friendship and the



THE EMBASSY OF THE CZECH REPUBLIC IS A TEXTBOOK EXAMPLE OF THE ELEGANT FUSION OF ORIGINAL CZECH CUBISM AND FUNCTIONALISM mastery of the artists who designed it. In 1927, Alexander Karadjordjevic I donated state land to Czechoslovak President Tomas Garrigue Masaryk literally across the street from the National Assembly which was under construction then, on a boulevard that is

today named after the assassinated king, at number 22. Alojz Mezera, the Czechoslovak state architect, designed the monumental contemporary building that was home to the Czechoslovak Embassy and today the Czech Embassy "to have the best view". It is interesting to note that the

building was not traditionally designed but rather was a reflection of modern Czechoslovakia, which was represented in the new, modern Yugoslavia. Although the front facade is quite classic, a layman would say that it was neoclassicism. In fact, this was Czech cubism, a direction that fit perfectly into the architecture of the old towns but at the same time, was excitingly contemporary. It is restrainedly simple with elements of functionalism, and the deco-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

ration is minimal. It really takes you back to the time of Hercule Poirot and it reflects the spirit of the era of the late 1920s and early 1930s. Also, it is noticeable that a great deal of attention was paid to its facade as it was to its interior, i.e. both the exterior and interior complement each other perfectly. There are no details that were "subsequently added". Everything about this building is one big Gesamtkunstwerk. H.E. Tomaš Kuchta, the Ambassador of the Czech Republic, takes us through the building, explaining that before the war, there the

building was both a residence and an embassy and that the ambassador lived with his family in the upper rooms and worked downstairs. He points us to original furniture - chairs, tables and fascinating clocks that ideally fit the inlays behind the walls. The ladies' salon, staircase and ceremonial hall captivate the observer with their elegant beauty, and the

walls are adorned with canvases of great value, such as "Diana of the Hunt" by the Czech painter Max Švabinsky, or the painting of Skopje from the 1940s. The ambassador also points out to us the historical events, as well as that Madeleine Korbel, married Albright, lived here, and that the document of Yugoslavia's capitulation was signed here, on April

17, 1941. Even the Nazis were not partial to the building. The Embassy of the Czech Republic is a textbook example of the elegant fusion of original Czech cubism and functionalism, and the final break of Serbian architecture with conventional local forms, and the triumphant entry into modern architecture with the help of a genius from the Prague School.




by Vanja Kovačev

Serbia and Finland are so Similar Interview with the spouse of the Finish ambassador to Serbia, Pia Kaikonen, graphic designer n the first days of February 2021, when the pandemic circumstances were still dominating the life in Belgrade and the rest of the world, DC had an exclusive honor to be invited to the Finnish residence in Belgrade and to interview an amazing lady - Mrs. Pia Kaikonen who opened the doors of her Serbian home away from home and shared some of the interesting cultural and gastronomy information about her home country in the North-The amazing Finland!


What are famous food specialties of Finland? — Finland has very rich culinary traditions. A little bit the same way as here in the Balkans where the east meets the west. This is reflected, for example, in the way how we mix sweet and savory tastes together. As a cold country, we cook many dishes in the oven, as especially in the old days that was a functional way to combine heating and cooking. Good examples of this are the various vegetable casseroles. We also use quite a lot of spices, which might be surprising. In the medieval times Estonian capital Tallinn, on the southern shore of the Gulf of Finland, was a big spice trading city. For example, in vegetable casseroles we use syrup, peppers, ginger, cinnamon, anis, liquorice etc. A good example of Finns’ love for spices nowadays is the fact that Finland is the largest exporter of cumin in the world. It’s wonderful to think that when an Indi-



FINLAND HAS VERY RICH CULINARY TRADITIONS. A LITTLE BIT THE SAME WAY AS HERE IN THE BALKANS WHERE THE EAST MEETS THE WEST an or American family sits at the dinner table, they can taste the deep aroma of the cumin that has grown under the endless, cool, northern summer sun. Do you or your chef prepare some Finnish dishes here in Belgrade?

— When we entertain guests, we always serve also Finnish specialties. As Finland has 187,888 lakes and also a long sea coastline, we love to serve Finnish fish. In addition to fish, we also serve game and other oven prepared meat dishes such as Kareli-

an stew, overcooked lamb (“särä”), but also many vegetarian dishes, such as root celery liquorice soup. For cocktail bites we serve, for example, “porkkala”, which is savory, fermented vegan dish made of carrots, celery or beetroot. We heard that Finns love cakestrue or false? — Oh, yes - Finns are cake lovers. We honor many of our important national figures with special cakes

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

named after them. It is also quite popular to go to cake buffets during weekends, where you can enjoy as much as you like both sweet and savory cakes.

Runeberg's Cupcakes

What is your favorite Serbian food? — My favorite is buckwheat pie that I ate when we were visited Uvac. I love strong Pirot cheese. You really can find the tastes of different flowers and herbs in it. What is life like in Belgrade? — Our life here is quite relaxing and culturally rich. At this moment social life is very limited but at normal times it’s vibrant. Even a northern introvert gets positive energy and action here. Tell us about a special cake dedicated to a Finnish poet. — Valentine’s Day is a newcomer in Finland from around 1980: ies. It was added into our calendar recently; in 1996. Somehow, we have turned it to be more a day of friendship rather of lovers. But of course, nowadays chocolate and flowers are given as presents. A more traditional cake

FINLAND IS THE LARGEST EXPORTER OF CUMIN IN THE WORLD served at this time of year is the Runeberg cupcake. Mr Johan Ludvig Runeberg was born on 5th of February, 1804, and he died on 6th May, 1877. He is the national poet of Finland and the author of the lyrics to “Our Land”, that became the Finnish national anthem. Runeberg cupcake is a Finnish pastry flavored with almonds and arrack or rum and weighing about 100 grams. It usually has raspberry jam encircled by a ring of icing on top. Runeberg regularly enjoyed the cupcake with punsch for breakfast. Runeberg cupcakes are typically eaten only in Finland and are generally available in stores from the beginning of January to Runeberg's birthday on February 5; however, Porvoo, where Runeberg lived for most of his life, is an exception, as some of its cafés tortes are available every day of the year. Runeberg's wife, Fredrika Runeberg, created the dessert. Her recipe book from the 1850s has a recipe for the cupcake, which is a variation of an earlier recipe by confectioner Lars Astenius from Porvoo.

INGREDIENTS BATTER: 1 egg 25 ml sugar 50 ml brown sugar 100 g butter 50 ml cream 200 ml flour 1 tsp baking powder 50 g ground almonds (50 ml cinnamon cookies) 1 tsp vanilla ½ tsp almond essence (a dash of almond liqueur — eg "Amaretto") SUGAR SYRUP: 100 ml sugar 50 ml water 1 - 2 tbsp (or to taste) punsch, rum or cognac raspberry topping: 100 ml raspberry jam SUGAR ICING: icing sugar water dash of almond essence

The individual moulds are bottomless cylinders about six centimetres tall and with a diameter of about five centimetres. When baked in these genuine moulds, the cakes are called by their proper name, "Runeberg's tarts". Melt the butter and let it cool slightly. Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Beat the egg and sugars until fluffy, add almond essence (and liqueur), melted butter and whipped cream. Mix together the dry ingredients. If you do not have cinnamon cookies, walnuts or hazelnuts at hand, you can omit them or replace them with ground or chopped almonds. Gently fold the dry ingredients into the batter. Lightly butter eight small (90 ml / 3 fl. oz) cylindrical moulds and spoon the batter into them. Place the moulds on a baking sheet and bake the cakes at 175 - 200 °C for 15 - 20 minutes or when a cake tester/toothpick inserted in the middle of them comes out clean.

for half an hour or longer. When the cakes seem thoroughly moist, gently remove them from the moulds and flip them over. If the bottoms of the cakes are uneven, cut them flat carefully, using a serrated knife, so that the cakes will stand straight. This is most easily done while the cakes are still inside the moulds. Cut by moving the knife along the rim of the mould.

Cut a small round hole on the top of the cakes using a small teaspoon (see the picture above). Fill the holes with raspberry topping and let it set in refrigerator. Meanwhile, prepare a very stiff

Traditionally, the dough for these cakes is baked in special "Runeberg's tart moulds", sold in many Finnish stores. Ground "Bastogne" sugar candy and cinnamon cookies are suitable to be used in this recipe

A homemade Runeberg's tart baked in a traditional mould (seen in the background)

Meanwhile, prepare the sugar syrup and raspberry topping. Place the sugar, water and the alcohol of your choice into a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to the boil, so that the sugar melts and alcohol evaporates. Remove from heat and set aside. Take the hot cakes out of the oven, prick them with a toothpick, and drizzle the warm sugar syrup on top of them. Use all of the syrup. Let the cakes absorb the syrup

sugar icing by mixing a dash or water with icing sugar. Flavour the icing with a dash of almond essence. Pipe the icing around the raspberry topping on top of the cakes (see the picture above). Let the sugar icing set and serve the cakes with coffee or tea. Makes about 8 small cakes. Recipe source: family recipe/ traditional Finnish recipe.





More than 200,000 people watched the humanitarian representative "Balkan Spy" (Balkansk špijun) in just one day, and by sharing the connection, 3,525,000 dinars were collected to help drama artists! The amount of donations grew with each share in the first 24 hours, due to the great interest in the spectacle prepared by the acting legend. This modern version of Dušan Kovačević's "Spy" will be available on Mozzart's channel and more than the originally planned 48 hours - you can watch a few more days! An unprecedented line-up of "Balkan Spy": Dragan Bjelogrlić, Mima Karadžić, Vesna Trivalić, Branka Katić and Gordan Kičić excelled in the first zoom play in Europe, and Zoran Kesić as a narrator brought more laughter in the action "Actors and Mozzart for you and actors ”. Everyone renounced their fees so that the amount of the donation would be even higher. - We are glad that many responded, shared representatives and that we sent on Christmas, a nice common message - to think about culture and that we need it at all times - said Borjan Popović, director of corporate communications at Mozzart.


The European Investment Bank Group (EIB) invested €873 million in the Western Balkans in 2020, increasing its financing in the region by 50% compared to 2019. It




Regional Challenge announced their regional call to support investments in cooperative training, ranging from 150.000 to 600.000 eur, with total funds to be used as of 18.8 milion euro. The launch event that announced beginning of this huge regional project gathered the representatives from international organizations and initiatives, regional organizations, public institutions in charge of vocational education and training, chambers of commerce, vocational training providers, enterprises. The Fund aims to strengthen the quality and labour market relevance of vocational education and training, by funding investments in equipment and infrastructure for selected cooperative/dual training projects that are implemented through partnerships between vocational training institutes and the enterprises. „The Regional Challenge Fund is an opportunity for companies and providers of expertise and training to adequately prepare for the time to come after a pandemic, which will further contribute to the stabilization and development of their individual business models“ - said Victoria Feith, Senior Portfolio Manager at KfW German Development Bank.




Philip Morris Serbia is the winner of the international ‘Top Employer’ Award for the sixth time in a row, thus strengthening its position among the best employers in Serbia. Employee relations, with their professional development as an absolute priority, are one of the examples of good practice, qualifying Philip Morris for this prestigious certificate for the sixth year in a row. This year’s award for the top



EQA is the name of the new entry-level model to the all-electric world of Mercedes-EQ vehicles. The electro-aesthetics of its design are indicative of the Progressive Luxury of the Mercedes-EQ

provided extensive support to the recovery from COVID-19 under the European Union’s Team Europe initiative to help the most affected sectors. In line with the European Union’s focus on connectivity, the majority of the investment, €531 million, was allocated to constructing and modernising transport infrastructure in the region, along with a €12 million grant provided under the EU Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) for Corridor Vc in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The EU bank supported a diversified portfolio of investments in key sectors for the region, including a €65 million investment for digitalising over 1 500 schools across Serbia. This project will facilitate the introduction of IT equipment and high-speed internet, while some 50 000 teachers will be able to receive training in digital skills.

employer confirms the commitment to constant improvement of working environment by developing and applying high-quality practices in the area of human resources, with employee satisfaction confirming its value. ‘The challenges we encountered in 2020 did not prevent Philip Morris from maintaining continuity in our priorities – our employees and care about them remained the most important aspects.’ said Milica Jović, Director of Human Resources and Organisational Culture in Philip Morris Southeast Europe. brand. Smart assistants support the driver in many areas: for example with respect to accident avoidance, the anticipatory and therefore particularly efficient operating strategy, and Navigation with Electric Intelligence. In addition, the car features various exceptional Mercedes-Benz functions, such as ENERGIZING Comfort and MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience). The EQA is a member of the successful compact car family from MercedesBenz. A close relation of the GLA, it delivers all the thrilling characteristics of that vehicle, combined in this case with an efficient electric powertrain. The new EQA is being built in Rastatt (Germany) and Beijing (China). The battery systems for the EQA are supplied by the Mercedes-Benz subsidiary Accumotive in Kamenz. From the spring of 2021, the electric SUV will be available from the European dealerships.

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs




UNIQA Serbia, as part of the UNIQA Group which operates in 18 countries and is the fifth insurance company in the insurance market in Central and Eastern Europe, began the process of strategic transformation on January 1, 2021. In order to create an organization with a central and primary customer orientation, with more efficient and even better service, the company’s business has been structured into three business models: Retail, Corporate & Affinity and Bank insurance. The goal of this transformation process called UNIQA 3.0 entails the harmonization of processes in 15 countries in Central and Eastern Europe by applying a new management model. UNIQA in Serbia has been further strengthened with new members of the Managing Board. Saša Krbavac, a successful manager with many years of experience in management positions, was appointed the Chairwoman of the Executive Board of UNIQA NonLife Insurance and professor Vidan Marković, PhD, was appointed Chairman of the Executive Board of UNIQA Life Insurance.



Dragoljub Damljanović assumed the helm of Schneider Electric Development Center in Serbia. Damljanović has been with Schneider Electric for more than 16 years, contributing to the company’s development at numerous leadership positions: Director of Schneider Electric Srbija d.o.o., Energy & Field Services VP for South East Europe, Digital Grid Sales VP. He will continue performing the latter function together with the new challenge he accepted in Serbia. The former Director of Schneider Electric Development Center Luis D’Acosta will continue working in United States of America at the position of VP Digital Grid Schneider Electric. “I am glad to continue on the successful path of our Development Center in Serbia, with a priority of maintaining the leadership position of our software solutions globally and faster sales growth. As more than 900 engineers work in our Development Center, we also aim to focus on the continuation of improving possibilities for their career development and working conditions”, said Dragoljub Damljanović.



Gebrüder Weiss has had a new addition, a hydrogen truck, to its fleet of vehicles since January 25. Instead of using diesel, the Hyundai XCIENT Fuel Cell model delivered to the Altenrhein branch in Switzerland runs on what is called “green hydrogen”, meaning that this commercial vehicle is able to save around 80 tons of CO2 emissions per year. “The coronavirus pandemic has diverted attention away somewhat from the climate change challenge, yet the logistics sector is continuing its work with manufacturers to find alternative ways of powering vehicles. With the arrival of our first hydrogen truck, Gebrüder Weiss has once again demonstrated that it also takes a leading role when it comes to sustainable solutions. Our aim is to gain experience using this technology to help us prepare for a situation where it may see wider use,” says Wolfram Senger-Weiss, CEO of Gebrüder Weiss. The Hyundai XCIENT Fuel Cell is a 36-ton truck designed to transport around 25 tons of goods with a range of around 600 kilometers.



The company Tehnički remont Bratunac / TRB / will participate again this year in the prestigious military equipment fair IDEX – International Defence Exhibition & Conference, from 21-25 February 2021 in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. For the third time, TRB is traditionally presented at this largest world exhibition for armaments, which will gather 1,300 companies from more than 60 countries this year. TRB will present to the world public all the innovations planned for 2021, but also the well-known, improved, products of the company, semi-automatic pistol “RS 9 Vampire” and lighter for military purposes, a special attraction will be the interactive presentation of our products in virtual reality. The company continuously invests in all segments, from machines, human resources, to marketing and participation in trade fairs.



The Literature of Lockdown Classic works have helped people make sense of the pandemi t least in the West, few people alive today have lived through a year quite like 2020—not just the convulsions but the isolation, not just the trauma but the tedium. Less violent than a war, more protracted than a natural disaster, covid-19 has been deadly, disorientating and unfamiliar. But although living memory has been of limited help as a guide to how to cope, the memories of others, and their imaginations, have proved useful to millions of readers. The solace and solidarity of reading have rarely been more important to more people. Locked down and lonely, many escaped into other lives and faraway worlds. But many sought out writers who might help them make sense of the pandemic. Popular books included “A Journal of the Plague Year”, Daniel Defoe’s semi-fictional diary (thought to be based on his uncle’s) of life in London in 1665, when the bubonic plague swept through the city. The same scourge features in Samuel Pepys’s diary: Pepys blithely notes the approach of the disease yet continues recording the details of his meals and frolics, exhibiting the same sense of disbelief and denial that were widespread in early 2020. Before long, though, he laments the capital’s empty and melancholy streets. The fictional outbreaks in Mary Shelley’s “The Last Man”, Albert Camus’s “The Plague”, José Saramago’s haunting “Blindness” and Emily St John Mandel’s “Station Eleven”—which weighs the death of an individual against the fate of the world—have offered, if not comfort, at least a fresh sense of perspective. For some of these authors, illness is a metaphor for other problems, such as extreme politics; in a similar way, stories about other kinds of derangement seemed to capture aspects of the pandemic and its management. In Mikhail Bulgakov’s “The Fatal Eggs”, for instance, a bureaucratic cock-up means a bid to boost poultry production instead yields a plague of giant serpents that overrun Russia. In a tale that also features heedless carousers in the streets and blinkered sci-




ALTHOUGH LIVING MEMORY HAS BEEN OF LIMITED HELP AS A GUIDE TO HOW TO COPE, THE MEMORIES OF OTHERS, AND THEIR IMAGINATIONS, HAVE PROVED USEFUL TO MILLIONS OF READERS entists, the authorities are slow to acknowledge the calamity, before taking drastic, draconian countermeasures. Some readers heard an echo of the year’s rhythms in what, on the face of it, is an entirely different sort of story. Thousands across the world were unhappy in the same way, and consoled in the same way, as they immersed themselves in “War and Peace”. The oscillation of Leo Tolstoy’s epic saga between, on the one hand, the battlefields of the Napoleonic wars, and, on the other, the salons of St Petersburg, eerily reflected the experience of lockdown; that, too, combined domesticity with an awareness of tumultuous happenings outside. In Tolstoy’s acute portrayal of the seesawing, exaggerated emotions that are evoked by times of crises,

readers found a reflection of their own volatile feelings—the alternating closeness and exasperation with loved ones, say, or the sense of liberation from ordinary life that flickered amid the crush of claustrophobia. For hope that life would go on—indeed, was already going on—The Economist suggested turning to Alexander Pushkin. Quarantined in 1830 because of a cholera outbreak, the poet found a serendipitous escape from worries over his impending marriage, his rickety finances and his runins with tsarist censors. Confined to a rural estate, Pushkin discovered a perverse sense of freedom and vitality. His writing and imagination roamed around the world; he finished “Eugene Onegin”, his brilliant novel in verse. And he reworked a verse drama by

a Scottish poet set during a bout of plague. Pushkin’s version offers this poignant, defiant riposte to sickness and death: There’s rapture on the battleground, and where the black abyss is found, And on the raging ocean main, Amid the stormy waves of death, And in the desert hurricane, And in the Plague’s pernicious breath. For all that threatens to destroy Conceals a strange and savage joy— Perhaps for mortal man a glow That promises eternal life; And happy he who comes to know This rapture found in storm and strife… We’ll sip the rosy maiden wine And kiss the lips where plague may lie! From The Economist, published under licence. The original article, in English, can be found on www.economist.com

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs



by Žikica Milošević

Happy Brexmas! The end of the Brexit saga

he Brexit saga began to resemble American TV series - after the exciting two seasons, it started to draw out and compromise on quality. Then, at the end of the 4th season, a little jump in the temperature, and voila - Brexit happens - and we are not talking about No Deal-Brexit. But it's not that good of a deal.

waters, UK 3, and a compromise has been found at 5.5. Nigel Farage is not satisfied, but said that Johnson "did a fair job". The Economist estimates that the UK's GDP will decline by 4% in the coming years than if there had been no Brexit. The Downing Street "begs to disagree".

MAGGIE LED US INTO THE EU, MAGGIE LED US OUT OF THE EU Brexit has been an essential part of British politics for more than five years, i.e. since the pros and cons campaign began, especially during and after the referendum. To illustrate that the British were not quite clear whether they were in Europe or not, George Orwell once placed the British Isles in Oceania and continental Europe in Eurasia. We only remember the not-so-happy look of Mark Renton from 'T2: Trainspotting' when he met a promoter from Slovenia at the airport. In a way, the "divine justice" is that the UK entered the EEC through the efforts of Margaret Thatcher and left it because of the disastrous consequences that her rule left on the "left behind areas" of the UK. Those who did not adjust to her vision of "the new Britain", and which none of the successors corrected, voted for Brexit. And then it turned into "a hot potato".

There is one bad segment of Brexit, and that is that it is almost the whole commodity agreement. For a long time, Great Britain has not been known for its commodities. 80% of the UK economy consists of services, which are the fastest growing part of the world economy, and little has been said about them, which means the tails of the Brexit saga will continue to drag on. The worst affected is a field where the UK has the greatest "soft power" in the world - music. Headliner.rs states: "European tours of British musicians have been called into question due to the Brexit agreement. The UK's trade agreement with the EU could completely halt British musicians' visits to Europe because of the visas they may have to apply for before they enter any European country where they want to perform. Although people from various industries will be able to travel to the EU on business without a visa, musicians are not exempt from that. Numerous bands and representatives of the music industry have warned that the additional cost of visas could make going to Europe financially unsustainable. Visa will be required for each member of a music band from the UK that wants to perform in the EU, which costs around 300 euro. If we are talking about a sixmember-band, the costs are such that no one will be able to pay for their performance anymore. They may be able to perform in countries outside the EU, such as Serbia, for instance.“ Meanwhile, the UK has signed or is in the process of signing agreements with Turkey, Canada, Australia, the US and the CCI, as well as the Commonwealth countries. The UK is hoping for new dawn but this time, it will wake up alone in the bed.


WHAT HAVE WE GAINED? Brexit ruined the career of Jeremy Corbyn, who was ambivalent towards it and the second referendum, and ousted Boris Johnson, who said "better some Brexit than none." Then it came to an agreement. Sometime around the Anglican Christmas period, an agreement was reached that is better than the relations between the countries as regulated by the WTO, and even better than the agreement that Canada has with the EU, which was the aim of the second half of the negotiations. The deal is formally stuck around one important thing (whether six of the nine counties of Ulster, known as Northern Ireland, will remain in the common market), and one seemingly trivial –


THE UK IS HOPING FOR NEW DAWN BUT THIS TIME, IT WILL WAKE UP ALONE IN THE BED fishing rights in the UK waters. If you think that the latter is irrelevant, remember that Greenland, Iceland, Norway and the Faroe Islands remained outside the EU, among other things, precisely because of this "banality". Northern Ireland will remain part of the EU's common market, and the issue of customs modalities between NI and GB (such are the car markings for these two parts of the UK) will be another subject of debate. How the IRA and the former "Southern Ireland" will react remains to be seen in the decades to come, aside from the sharp division of public opinion about remaining in the EU (the Catholics) and leaving (the Protestants). Some have also mentioned the "repartition of Ireland" - where Catholic parts of the NI would join the Republic. In Scotland, there are no such divisions, at least not to such an extent. There was a clear majority in favour of remaining in the EU. But as they rejected independence in 2014, now we can’t count on a quick new referendum on leaving the UK, even though Nicola Stur-

geon really wants that scenario. The most optimistic option is that such a referendum will take place before 2025, which is fair, because Scotland must live as part of the UK and outside the EU to ascertain that it doesn't like it that much. Then, it was percentages' turn. The UK government has accurately calculated that the UK has won in 43% of its requests, the EU in 17% and that a compromise was reached in 40% of contentious issues. The Economist, on the other hand, claims that the UK has given up much more than the EU, which shows that a stronger EU negotiating position was obvious, and that it will be harder for Britain without the EU than vice versa. Boris Johnson triumphantly stated that a trade agreement worth £166 billion had been signed, "in the Canadian style", and that British goods would make it to the EU shelves without customs duties and quotas, as well as that Britain is "finally free for the first time since 1973". As far as Britain is concerned, the EU was asking for 14 years for European fishermen to fish in British



by Žikica Milošević


The Country of Great Hospitality Will Always Be in Our Hearts Missing friends and the atmosphere in the times of uncertainty

iplomacy & Commerce magazine, in each issue, among other things, represents the diplomatic corps, as well as everything that happens in the diplomatic community in Serbia. Now we also want to show our readers where the former ambassadors work and






what they do. In this issue, we present the ambassadors of two countries or entities: UNICEF and Germany. We asked them what they did after leaving Belgrade, what they miss the most from Serbia and how much the pandemic has changed diplomacy and the daily life of a diplomat.



Missing the Food, Music and Extremely Friendly People

H. E. AXEL DITTMANN Federal Foreign Office, Berlin, Germany

grade in July 2018 after 01. spending three wonderful years in My family and I left Bel-

Serbia. We have all returned to a busy life back in Berlin. I am back in the Federal Foreign Office, where I am responsible for EU institutional affairs; I have worked in particular on coordinating our


positions in the Brexit negotiations and on preparing our EU Presidency. My wife Natalie is back working on various scientific projects at the Charité University Hospital and our kids are all complaining about too much work at school...

weather (the early springs and the long autumns…). And I miss Basketball at Hala Pionir (the arena in Berlin is very quiet in comparison!). I am still following the political development and am still hoping for a faster progress of Serbia towards the EU.

We all miss Belgrade! We I think our job has been 03. miss the great city (alimpacted enormously, 02. though we love Berlin, of course), as travel and contacts with other the extremely friendly people, the great food and music, the exceptional hospitality, and the better

people are at the center of our profession. In preparing for our EU Presidency, we had to (literally

speaking) put all our preparations into the bin and begin all over again three months before its start last July. However, I believe much more important than restrictions for our job has been the impact of this pandemic on our private lives, on our families, without the possibility to meet friends and loved ones. So let’s hope we will be able to jointly overcome this situation as fast as possible and that me and that my family and I can visit Serbia again soon!

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

We are Contemplating Buying a Flat in Belgrade!

we are contemplating 02. getting a flat in Belgrade and makThe short answer is that

MICHEL SAINT-LOT UNICEF Representative in Madagascar


A new journey with different challenges - In Serbia, I was in a Middle income country where our main focus was advocating for reform, supporting the strengthening or reforming of existing systems to improve efficiency and effectiveness of basic and social services for the benefit of all. In Madagascar, the challenges are very different and complex. Since taking up my assignment in August 2018, we have had to respond to the needs of hundreds of thousand of people affected by poverty, an inexistant social protection system, chronic malnutrition, floods, hurricanes, droughts, epidemics such as the plague, measles and now Covid, in an environment where the financial assets are far below those of Serbia. As I respond to this interview, we are working hand in hand with the national authorities and development partners to assist 1.2 million people affected by an 18-month-long drought in southern Madagascar where people are in dire need of water and basic food for their mere survival. A situation that reminds us all of our “raison d’être” as Unicef and to not leave anyone behind.

ing it our second home. Why Serbia? A country of proud and loyal people open to friendship that welcomed me and my family. In my first encounter with then president Tomislav Nikolic, when asked where I was from, I answered (I’m known for my tendency to jest with everyone) that my Father was from Novi Sad and my mother from Pirot. A joke I used often, during our five years in Serbia, and the laugh and reaction I always received truly made me feel that I was welcome. Before taking my assignment in Serbia, I was told by many that I would encounter a lot of racism. Truth is, we found kindness, a people proud and loyal in their friendship and generosity, ready to share even in remote poor villages. I do miss my former office team and colleagues, the friends we made over our half a decade in Belgrade like Robert and Zikica of Diplomacy and Commerce , the supportive hands of Sasa Djordjevic, Novak and Jelena Djokovic, Ana Ivanovic and her parents Misa and Dragana, to advance UNICEF work for the vulnerable children in Serbia. I do miss the vibrant, noisy Kafanas blasting folk songs of the Yugoslavia era, like Goran Bregovic songs, (though I had a hard time with the

heavy smoking.). My usual lunch at Mali Paris, just 50 meters from my office, and the chatting time with the owner Bata, who unfortunately is no longer with us (RIP). We have the fondest memory of our last family diner at the iconic Belgrade restaurant “Frans” for my wife’s birthday, a few days before the family left Serbia, The smell of Cevapi and the taste of ajvar, prebanac and the inexpensive but good wine. The yearly outstanding dance festival of Aja Jung, the guitar festival of Bisko Radojkovic, the Belgrade opera where we had the opportunity to enjoy many productions, though we missed the performance of primadonna Jadranka Jovanovic. The Sunday afternoons in Zemun along the Danube or the bicycle rides at Ada or enjoying a freshly baked thin crust pizza with our youngest daughter at Via Piano (her favorite place). Strolling at my father’s place Novi sad and my mother’s home town, Pirot. Traveling through a green Serbia. Our Tango lessons at Tango Natural with Darko , Sonja, and the rest of their wonderful kind and beautiful-spirit team - in particular our patient and wonderful teachers Nevena, Lukas and Aleksandar. Too many good memories to give a ranking order. My wife and daughter went back vacationing in Belgrade for a week, a year later, in 2019, and would have gone back

in 2020, but for the pandemic situation. Our Serbian cat, now 3 years old, is an everyday reminder of the many beauties of Serbia. The diplomatic events 03. around National holidays have shifted from friendly and joyful evenings to mostly Video celebrations without the warmth and friendly chit-chat in elegant atmospheres. But the pandemic has created a stronger bond to face together adversity, to face a virus that is so democratic that it does not differentiate the poor and the rich, the common people and the powerful, be presidents or diplomats. Though Nations that have vowed solidarity have behaved selfishly, using their purchasing power. In Madagascar, where quality healthcare is a real challenge, the diplomatic community, much smaller than the one in Serbia, behaves as a united team where everyone looks after each other’s well being and truly demonstrates the duty of care for the people we are to be serving and supporting in the spirit of leaving no one behind. The pandemic is teaching so many lessons, and I sincerely hope that we will learn from them and not forget the fragility of human kind in an environment that we have neglected, abused and endangered. May I wish us all a happy and more serene 2021, a year to regain our faith in humanity.



by Nevena Kuveljić

Cultural Diplomacy Breaks Down Prejudices About Our Country With culture and art, we can build relationships, particularly those that are politically bad VJERA MUJOVIĆ Actress and author of the monograph

ulture is a heavy industry for Greece,” said the long-celebrated actress and Minister of Culture of Greece, Melina Mercouri. Culture and art speak a universal language that is understood by all peoples, and different cultures testify to the beauty and diversity of the world in which we live. Creativity, originality, authenticity, innovation and cultural heritage of a country make its national identity stronger and its image in the world more influential and representative. The exchange of different aspects of culture contributes to a better understanding of traditions and cultural expressions of other countries and peoples, and breaks down prejudices and thus enables their better mutual understanding. Furthermore, the goal of cultural diplomacy is to create a good image of a country in the international community. For Serbia, after the 1990s wars, the imposed sanctions and the turbulent political and social situation, cultural diplomacy is especially important in order to improve its international reputation.


CULTURAL DIPLOMACY IN THE SERVICE OF SERBIA Our celebrated actress Dr. Vjera Mujović wrote about the importance of cultural diplomacy for Serbia’s image in the world in the monograph Cultural Diplomacy in the Service of Serbia. The book was written based on her doctoral dissertation and experiences gained during presenting Serbia in the world's largest cities such as New York, Paris, Vienna, and Moscow. "I needed to formulate, systematize, edit and generalize some of my knowledge and experiences, in order to come up with recommendations for myself and others - colleagues, institutions and my homeland. That is why I needed a lot of theoretical and practical research in areas that are not



so foreign to my job, but are much more exact. This book is the fruit of my ten years of reading and researching and thirty years of artistic practice ", Vjera says. As an actress, she has been a festival guest in many countries, as well as film and theatre productions. She was mostly asked about Kusturica and Bitef, and quite often she gifted foreigners with a

into a doctoral thesis dedicated to improving the image of Serbia in the world. I interviewed a hundred of my colleagues who cooperate with art institutions abroad and talked to our diplomats around the world, but also with foreign diplomats in Serbia. My colleagues agreed on one thing: we are excellent in individual projects, personal initiatives and en-

Serbia” is a pioneering endeavour in terms of the organized presentation of Serbian culture in the world. "In our surroundings, this is a pioneering attempt to systematically unite practical experiences and theoretical thinking of one important component of Serbia's overall performance in international relations; a component

I WANTED TO SHAPE MY KNOWLEDGE FROM PRACTICE AND RESEARCH INTO A DOCTORAL THESIS DEDICATED TO IMPROVING THE IMAGE OF SERBIA IN THE WORLD book “A Guide to the Serbian Mentality”, written by Momo Kapor in the English language, Ivo Andrić's novel “The Bridge on the Drina”, as well as music by Svetislav Božić, Pavle Aksentijević and our church music. "I wanted to shape my knowledge from practice and research

gagement, but we lack unity, as well as state cultural policy, which would, through international cultural cooperation, persistently represent our best to the world," Vjera Mujović points out. In the preface, Professor Darko Tanasković, PhD, states that “Cultural Diplomacy in the Service of

which contribution to the image of Serbia in the world could be incomparably greater than it is today. Cultural diplomacy should not be mystified. We just need to commit ourselves to it with a clear idea of purpose and goal, in a planned, organized, quality manner, permanently and with appro-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

others. Also, Mujović states that foreign artists can be included in the promotion of Serbia, such as Monica Bellucci, Johnny Depp and Robert De Niro. At the end of the conversation, she especially underlines that we can build relations with culture and art, particularly where the relations are politically bad.

A VERSATILE ARTIST Artist and author of the monograph, Vjera Mujović, is an actress at the National Theatre in Belgrade. She has won many awards, including the Mata Milošević Award and the Golden Knight in Moscow for the role of Aglaya in the play "The Idiot". At the XXIV Festival of Russian Classics, she


was the recipient of the Best Actress award for her role as Sonechka. In addition to acting, she is engaged in music, writing and translation. She defended her doctoral dissertation titled "Cultural diplomacy as a factor in changing the image of Serbia in the world" in May 2019 at the Faculty of Media and Communications of the Singidunum University. Vjera Mujović also actively contributes to international cultural cooperation and the promotion of Serbian culture in the world, with a special emphasis on the Russian Federation and the Francophone world. She gained many years of experience both as an organizer and as a participant in institutional and non-institutional projects in the field of culture. Vjera also actively cooperates with our diaspora. In terms of public diplomacy, she participated in numerous campaigns, such as the exhibition "Jasenovac - the right to be remembered" which was held in New York City, at the United Nations, in 2018, as well as the opening of the Hebrew Centre in Belgrade and the Serbian-Jewish Centre "St. Sava and Yehuda Alkalay” in Jerusalem, in 2019.

w PA w Y w. M di E pl N om T ac IN C ya ST Em al l nd R ai us co UC l: p or / su mm TIO Ph ret se bs e N on pla nd cr rce S e: ta us ip .r : +3 -d re tio s 81 c@ qu n 11 c es 40 ol t o 44 or n: 96 .rs 0

N co ews S Se mm , an co ubs v co rbi en aly b us er crib En mm a, in tary sis, in ag e i es e no n gl ish unit dipl on ter s a of w Re , d y. E om eve vie nd dip fo i re ve at nt w pl liab so lom r co a i s c a c r cie a m tly y n o us tfo le a a ty cy pre to mo nd ccu d re efu rm nd r b in , p he n y i l g n o u t e o op io inf Se oli n ffe ffi ur hs, sin g i n o c n rb tic siv de in es rm rin ie up po al ia s, e n s r a g s da tu a t n k . te nit d f tion div info er s a ie or r nd s, t eig abo se ma r n tio u re en n se ds inv t loc e ar , le s al t ch , m es gisl at ent . io n



priate investments. This substantive study by Dr. Vjera Mujović convincingly tells us that ", writes Professor Tanasković. Commenting about the monograph “Cultural Diplomacy in the Service of Serbia”, Dr. Jan Marcek states that, in addition to systematizing theoretical knowledge about cultural diplomacy, in her monograph, Vjera Mujović gives an overview of empirical research on forms of cooperation between the Republic of Serbia and the world in the field of culture from 2001 to 2015. He adds that the author argues that the exceptional contribution of our top artists to the dissemination of Serbian culture in the world in the service of boosting the country’s reputation. In the book “Cultural Diplomacy in the Service of Serbia”, Vjera Mujović states that Serbia’s cultural heritage represents the essence of national and cultural identity and should be presented on the international scene. She adds that we should not forget the people who are the pillars and ambassadors of Serbian culture, such as Tesla, Milanković, Pupin, Andrić, Crnjanski, Kapor, Emir Kusturica, violinist Nemanja Radulović, composer Isidora Žebeljan and






by Žikica Milošević

The Unusual Bestseller Das Licht von Kairo and other stories


rom a translator and a bridge between Serbian and Portuguese culture, Dejan Tiago Stanković slowly began to grow into a hit writer. His latest novel, Zamalek, proved to be a bestseller, and it speaks, unlike his earlier works about Portugal, about the vibrant megalopolis - Cairo. Many compare him to Darrell, Kipling and Mahfouz but he likes it the best when people say that he was influenced by the best writers around whose works he translated – Andrić and Saramago. In this interview, Dejan tells us what led to his “finest hour”.


Where did the love for the Portuguese language and Portugal come from, first of all? Why did you choose Lisbon as your home? — It came by accident. Shortly before the war, since I graduated in architecture and went to London, to finish my education without going to school, since London was a very exciting place. I met a girl, a Portuguese one, we had a child, we didn’t feel like staying in London anymore, and returned to Portugal to be close to her family. I've been living here for almost 25 years and 15 years in Lisbon. Why did you choose Tiago as your middle name? — I wasn't aware of my problem until I saw Google for the first time, and as usual, I googled my name. I realized that the curse of the name Dejan Stanković has something to do with football. I had to come up with an artistic name. Another problem from that time was that when we were at border crossings I was often asked why my children didn't have the same last name. They are Portuguese from their mother’s side, and according to their custom, they have two surnames, their mother's and father's, i.e. Tiago-Stanković. And my last name is only Stanković. That's why I took



WRITERS WHO WRITE WELL AND METICULOUSLY ARE EASILY TRANSLATED. TRANSLATING IS LIKE REWRITING SOMEONE’S BOOK BUT IN A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE this name - because it is unique and people can confuse my name only with those of my direct descendants. Translators are bridges between cultures. You translated Saramago into Serbian and Andrić into Portuguese. How exciting was that challenge for you? — Writers who write well and meticulously are easily translated. Translating is like rewriting someone’s book but in a different language. When your translation is bad, the writer usually wrote something sloppy. So, for me, translating always went well, because the writers had written well. By translating the works of the best writers, Nobel laureates and

classics, I learned the craft. After the first two books about Lisbon and Estoril, places you got to know by living in them, you jumped over to Cairo and your novel “Zamalek” caused a lot of commotion among readers and became a real literary hit. Some people call this novel a twisted travelogue of Cairo and say that it resembles a mixture of Kipling's, Darrell's and Mahfouz's books, as well as films by Wenders and Ivory. It sounds exciting to have a bestseller about an exotic destination. How did the book come about? — I'm always happy when people tell me that my work resembles that of good writers. I like it the

most when they tell me that they can see that I was influenced by the writers whose books I translated - Andrić, Mihajlović and Saramago. If my work resembles that of other writers, it is a pure coincidence. I've never read any other books so meticulously that they would leave an imprint on me. By the way, I am an architect by education, I loved urbanism the most in my studies, and I love cities because of the variety of people that live in them. The book about a city I don't know, Cairo, was created because my dear friend Arna was in the Croatian diplomatic service in Cairo, so I went to stay with them for a few weeks a year during their entire tenure. We stayed in Zamalek, I hung out with ex-

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

pats, diplomats, Serbian emigrants and neighbours - Zamalek is based on their stories. It lasted for four years. There I heard a story about the posthumous adventures of one of our emigrants, how he suffered and about kismet. However, a novel about kismet could not be understood and it would not be that interesting to write what happened to someone after their death without having prior knowledge of Cairo. That is why I made chapters from the footnotes that were needed to understanding the book. So, I can see why they are jokingly calling the book ‘a travelogue’. How much has architecture, the “construction profession,” helped you “build” your books? — I don't build books, I weave them. Like making patchwork... I assemble them. I weave the pieces, arrange them and assemble them into a big picture. That's why my chapters are short. I learned that writing a diary on Facebook. By the way, “Zamalek” became a literary hit because my audience, which follows me on Facebook, and there are 20K people there, read my articles every day. I've been doing this for al-

most ten years and I've been reading a lot but during the lockdown, I saw that a rather strong audience was getting bored, so I tried to entertain them. There I learned that nowadays only short chapters hold attention and that we

must be quick to attract and maintain curiosity because the modern reader has stimuli from all sides and cannot focus that easily. You should first attract their attention, but unobtrusively, then they start liking you, at a certain point you


even annoy them and then they fall in love with you all over again. It’s a long process – for one writer to get to the established audience, and today most people work on social media. All books are connected by an expat theme - both “Estoril” and “Zamalek”. — My topic is emigrants because I have been a semi-nomad for decades and I like that. People who have changed climate and culture are interesting - they are like transplanted plants, and they prove how important resourcefulness is. What should we do next after the "old normal" returns? — By the way, I have had “Estoril” translated into English and I got quite a big publisher. I did well. I am a recipient of a renowned award in Serbia and also got a sweet award from fellow writers of historical novels in English as “the discovery of the year”. I have, of course, a Portuguese version, as well as a Spanish, Russian and Bulgarian one. “Zamalek” is being translated into English. I guess that novel will make some waves too.



Main Program is Brave, Insanely Interesting and Boldly Mature nder a few slogans, 18th Belgrade Dance Festival is ahead of us. Inviting us to enjoy live performances and the magic of the theater, its main program is brave, insanely interesting and boldly mature... It starts on March 20th with Dimitris Papaioannou’s new piece and ends on April 14th with Akram Khan Company’s performance. However, this is not all, because there are also programs from the previous edition that could not reach the audience in Belgrade and


Novi Sad due to the pandemic. For those who kept their tickets, the Festival owes some sensational shows, so the real marathon of guest performances of exceptional choreographers and companies will last from March 6th until September 26th! The Festival is preceded by the traditional film review Dance Days in Cinematheque (February, 18-21), workshops, masterclasses, exhibitions... Diplomacy & Commerce’s Choice: 6 Choreographic Works To Mark The World’s Theater Season: TanzMainz’s first time performing in Belgrade, the festival’s audience is well acquainted with Sharon Eyal’s opus.

COMPAGNIE MAGUY MARIN, APR Sainte-Foy-Les-Lyon 20h · Theater Atelje 21



DIMITRIS PAPAIOANNOU, MAR Athens 20h · Serbian National Theater


Painter and choreographer, theater and visual artist, Dimitris Papaioannou is bringing his newest production to the Belgrade Dance Festival. Even during the creative process, the piece “Transverse orientation” was bought by the biggest festivals and theaters. However, the pandemic wanted the world tour to start almost a year late, in March 2021, and for Paris and Novi Sad to be at the top of the list of cities where the audience will be the first to discover a new work of the famous Greek artist.

ZAPPALA DANZA, Catania MAR 20h · Opera Madlenianum An authentic piece dedicated to Saint Agatha, the patron Saint of Catania. Adopting an iconographic aesthetic, but not giving up on his extremely brave and modern language, choreographer Roberto Zappalà tackles current topics



such as violence against women, religious and economic fundamentalism. Sicily is depicted in between fascination, mysticism and harsh reality. The Saint, whose devotional image bordering eroticism and sadism is universally known in the catholic world, is a starting point for the piece.

05 APR

TANZMAINZ, Mainz 20h · Yugoslav Drama Theater

The great lady of the French contemporary dance, Maguy Marin, created the “Ligne de Crête”, researching Spinoza’s philosophy and the philosophy of Marx. However, her intention was to approach this topic from a more fun angle, like mad rock climbers who, thanks to their endurance, radically change their positions and strategies, After all, that is the only possibility to conquer an unattainable summit.


9-10 Brussels APR

20h · Opera Madlenianum

In the diptych: “The missing door” and “The Lost Room”, several characters are evolving in spaces from which they cannot escape.

Wandering through a macabre labyrinth, they seek an ideal, they bring a dream and hope. The characters live between reality and what’s imagined, guided by natural forces that lead them to an uncertain destiny. Gabriela Carrizo and Franck Chartier create a disturbing, dark and enclosed world – typical in the work of Peeping Tom, while at the same time putting a unique and extreme language of movement and performance at the center of the pieces. The performance reminds on live montage of superb horror.

AKRAM KHAN COMPANY, APR London Serbian National Theater


“Outwitting the Devil” is a piece inspired by fragments of the 12 broken clay tablets which together make up one of the world’s oldest great works of literature, the ancient Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh. Akram Khan’s new work embodies a violent chapter in young Gilgamesh’s life, read and recalled by his older, dying self.

Even though Sharon Eyal says “Soul Chain” is a piece about love and longing, you should not expect too much romance. Rather, the movements are animalistic and pure, a steaming group that moves with the highest discipline in rhythmic unison. The longer a unison lasts, the more time we have to search for the differences between the dancers and find their true intentions. One can see from the same thing how different we are. So here, in the contrast between the group and the individual, Eyal expresses her love for the absolute uniqueness of each individual. Although it will be

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


by Robert Čoban

A Castle Saved by an Apple on Sofija Dundjerski’s Head Sokolac Castle, Žitni Magacin and Glavaš House in Novi Bečej

READ THIS ON WEB Sokolac Castle

potholed field road leads us to Sokolac Castle near Novi Bečej, one of the attractions in this small town in Banat County, which I did not manage to visit during my bicycle tour last summer. The castle, which at that time was called Veliki Salaš, together with auxiliary buildings and 3,997 acres of land, was inherited by Emilija Ivanović, nee Dundjerski, the daughter of Lazar Dundjerski. After the war, the property with a beautiful park was


ALTHOUGH CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC AND NEGLECTED, SOKOLAC IS TODAY IN BETTER CONDITION THAN MOST SIMILAR FACILITIES IN VOJVODINA nationalized and was given to the Sokolac agricultural estate (people say that the estate was named after the horse called Sokol), and after several unsuccessful privatizations, it is currently under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy trustee.

Remembering the glorious past and waiting for better days: Sokolac Castle


Lenka Dundjerski room, Sokolac Castle

Although closed to the public and neglected, Sokolac is today in better condition than most similar facilities in Vojvodina. The roof is intact, the gutters are in good condition, all the tiled stoves have been preserved (each was fired from the hallway so

that coal and wood would not be brought into the rooms), as have some pieces of period furniture, tiles and parquet floor. The castle also hides two real attractions. The first room is Emilija's sister Lenka Dundjerski and features her portrait painted by Uroš Predić. Above the bed in which Lenka, the big love of Laza Kostić, slept when she came to visit her sister, there is a mysterious portrait of her. Milan, who has been working here as a security guard for

Sokolac Castle

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs

Vladimir Glavaš' house is located between the Orthodox and Catholic churches

35 years, showed Matija Kovač, the provincial deputy from Novi Bečej, and me the basement of the house where the other attraction of this castle is located - a 100-year-old bowling alley, a real rarity in this area. There is a bowling ball in the alley and until recently, there were original skittles here, says Milan, but someone stole them. Many local films and series were shot in and around the castle, including "Jesen Stiže Dunjo Moja", directed by Ljubiša Samardžić. As part of the national project called "Castles of Serbia Protection of Cultural Heritage", I believe that this pearl of architecture and significant historical and cultural heritage will once again shine in full splendour. Žitni Magacin (Granary) is the next attraction that is not that known in Novi Bečej. A road leads us to a dam near the Tisza River and a shepherd with a flock of sheep who cuts us off. We exchange a couple of sentences, I tell him we are “colleagues”, and he tells me, in a strong Hungarian accent, that he has 80 sheep. Immediately after that, he runs after one of them heading towards the road. The granary in Novi Bečej was built between 1778 and 1780 next to the quay, at the former mouth

The Glavaš House

of Mali Begej, which, at that time, was a tributary of the Tisza River, right on the border which separated Vranjevo from Novi Bečej, also known as the Turkish Bečej. The original function of the granary was storing wheat and sunflower. Today, the warehouse is not in function, it has not been preserved and is being eroded by the ravages of time. This cultur-

Former barbershop in the yard of the Glavaš House

how one day this could be a gastronomic market where producers from all over Vojvodina would present their specialties. In 1907, an eligible bachelor called Vladimir Glavaš apparently had a lot of problems with the opposite sex considering that he had bequeathed his house to the Serbian Orthodox Church on the condition that a woman should not

THE GLAVAŠ HOUSE MEMORIAL MUSEUM IS LOCATED BETWEEN THE ORTHODOX AND CATHOLIC CHURCHES, IN THE AMBIENCE OF THE OLD TOWN CENTRE IN VRANJEVO al monument is one of the oldest preserved buildings of this type in Vojvodina and Serbia. Following the Decree of the Government of the Republic of Serbia, adopted in 2001, Žitni Magacin in Novi Bečej was declared a cultural monument. Matija unlocks the door and we enter an incredible space where our focus immediately shifts to the imposing beams made of solid wood from Transylvania that intertwine on all three floors. We climb the dilapidated stairs to the attic, carefully walk along the joints of the boards and talk about

step foot into it for 100 years. The Glavaš House Memorial Museum is located between the Orthodox and Catholic churches, in the ambience of the old town centre in Vranjevo, which is now part of Novi Bečej. The building was erected in the first decades of the 19th century and belonged to the respectable and wealthy Glavaš family. Vladimir Glavaš was born in 1834 in a wealthy family from Vranjevo, to father Pavel and mother Persida, nee Čorbakov, whose ancestors were Serbian border guards of the Potisko-Po-

morška military frontier who did not go to tsarist Russia after its de-militarization in 1751, but founded Franjevo (Vranjevo), which for a century and a half was part of the Veliko Kikinda district bearing special imperial privileges. Vranjevo became one of the main centres of the export of the grain from Banat (from the aforementioned Žitni Magacin), and many people from Vranjevo quickly became rich, including the Glavaš family. Vladimir, a doctor of law, who studied in Poszony and Prague, bequeathed the house and his other property to the Serbian Orthodox Church in the Municipality of Vranjevo in 1907, two years before his death, with the above-mentioned unusual condition. One hundred years later, the building was in a very dilapidated condition (perhaps precisely because there was no female hand to maintain it) and was taken over by the Municipality of Novi Bečej which began to renovate it. Today, it houses a memorial museum which is in excellent condition. Janos, the curator of the memorial house, played an excellent host to us and took us from room to room to a spacious yard and an auxiliary building in which var-

100 years without women: the Glavaš House


Giga Jovanović's calendar for 1942

ious old crafts and agricultural machines that were once used are presented. One of the photos shows the welcome that the Serbian army received in Vranjevo during the liberation in 1918 which feature well-groomed men and women in the most beautiful clothes, holding portraits of King Petar and Regent Aleksandar. There is a very narrow door between the kitchen and the dining room so that the heat and smells from cooking would not bother the family while they enjoyed lunch. At the entrance, there is a wooden tool for removing boots, which Janos says had its own name - "the maid". In one of the rooms on the wall, there is a 1942 Cyrillic Orthodox calendar which was printed by Giga Jovanović bookstore, paper mill, printing house and bookbinder. Janos tells me how Giga Jovanović, one of the wealthier residents of Novi Bečej, continued working during the German occupation of Banat in the Second World War. In addition to a large bookstore and a modest printing house founded in 1898, Vladimir Glavaš had a large flower garden at the end of the main street in Novi Bečej, on which a dozen residential buildings were built after World War II, and a farm sur-

The last memory of the Novi Bečej Synagogue: the gate with the Star of David

rounded by close to thirty acres of land. Until his death, he was the director of the Turkish Bečej Savings Bank, which capital exceeded one million dinars. He was an active member of the society – a long-term president of the Voluntary Fire Brigade in Novi Bečej, head of the Sokol Association Novi Bečej and a prominent member of many other organizations. He was also a regular member of Matica Srpska in Novi Sad. During his life, he built a beautiful tomb,

Milan, the keeper of Sokolac Castle for the past 35 years


100-year-old bowling alley in the courtyard of Sokolac Castle


with a tombstone, which is an ornament to Novi Bečej’s Orthodox cemetery. He died in 1944, thus avoiding the humiliation that many wealthy farmers (the socalled kulaks) in Vojvodina experienced after the liberation. Giga, like many of his other influential contemporaries, had no descendants to take care of the monument and its maintenance. The basement of the Glavaš House stores brandy that Janos makes from fruit grown on

the estate which we had a glass of. There is also a gate bearing the Star of David that stood at the entrance to the synagogue. On the eve of the Second World War, 220 Jews lived in Novi Bečej, while Isidor Schlesinger was the then president of the Jewish community. The synagogue was located deep behind the gate, surrounded by a metal fence with brick pillars. After the German occupation of Banat in the spring of 1941, the synagogue served as a collection centre, not only for the Jews from Novi Bečej but also for those from the surrounding area. Pursuing their anti-Semitic policy, the Nazis deported them by barge to Belgrade and Pančevo and killed almost every single one of them. Filip M. Polak was the last rabbi of Novi Bečej. As not a single Jew remained in the town, and considering that, during the war, the synagogue was very dilapidated, the municipal authorities decided to demolish it in 1947. Today, in its place, stands a privately-owned house at 16, Žarka Zrenjanina Street, as a testimony that there used to be a Jewish synagogue here of which only the Star of David remained, attached to the lower part of the metal gate, hidden in the yard of the Glavaš House.

Granary from the late 18th century

CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs


Example of Good Practice Last year, the VIRTUS award for individual contribution to philanthropy went to Tamara Klarić and Bogdan Stevanović from Belgrade

his year, Trag Foundation has announced the 14th VIRTUS Award for Philanthropy. The aim of this prestigious award is to recognize and highlight companies, small and medium-sized enterprises and individuals who have supported public benefit initiatives in the most long-term and effective way during the previous year. The VIRTUS Award is presented with the financial support of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) within the Framework for Giving project, the European Union, and the Balkan Trust for Democracy. Last year, the VIRTUS award for individual contribution to philanthropy went to Tamara Klarić and Bogdan Stevanović from Belgrade, who created the humanitarian action "Take a step"(„Pruži korak“) and thus raised funds for the construction of a new Parent’s House in Belgrade, in which children with cancer and their parents from other cities in Serbia stay, when children come for treatment. They designed a socially responsible application for mobile phones "Take a step", in which 560,000 people and over 60 donor companies participated, and raised more than half a million Euros to build a new Parent’s House in Belgrade. The "Take a step" application had several levels. The first is raising money for a new Parent House. The second is the motivation of people to be physically active, which is the best prevention to reduce heart disease. The third aspect is ecological, because walking helps to reduce the emission of harmful gases in the air for at least a few days, which contributes to the protection of the environment. The two of them walked from Niš to Belgrade and by their example motivated the general public to get involved in that humanitarian action. Back in 2017, by walking from Belgrade to Niš, they raised funds for the construction of the hemato-oncology department of the Children's Hospital in Niš. In that way, together they crossed Serbia on foot twice,



THE ENVIRONMENT IN WHICH WE LIVE IS A DIRECT PRODUCT OF OUR DECISIONS AND ACTIONS while all participants in the action in 2019 crossed the circumference of the planet Earth on foot. "Our wish was to do something for children with cancer and to show how much power can have " little ordinary people " when they unite in great and important deeds. Let everyone imagine what (s)he would do if the fate of the world depended on her/him. I hope we are all ready to hear that great surprising truth - yes, the world depends on us. The environment in which we live is a direct product of our decisions and actions. There is a whole range of activities that shape our present and future - from not throwing garbage in nature to engaging in

community development initiatives. That is why it is very important for people to gather around humane ideas and to show through philanthropic initiatives that good deeds can connect us. Such a society is a better place to live ", said Tamara Klarić. Almost all activities were realized voluntarily and thanks to the pro bono contribution of individuals and companies: the service for creating and running the application is a donation from an IT company, two Startit centers in Belgrade and Novi Sad and Think Innovative center in Niš offered space for project presentations to the business sector, and the media supported the action. Dur-

ing the walk, Tamara and Bogdan were provided with accommodation and food by volunteers and parents gathered in NURDOR. The lease of the server for installing the application was financed by the initiators of the action - Tamara and Bogdan. During this campaign, the results were measured on the basis of donations paid for each kilometer traveled, since the application counts the steps, then, individual gifts from donors, such as a house on Fruška Gora, based on published texts in the media and social networks. The estimated value of the support is close to one million Euros. Tamara, in addition to her professional engagement in the National Association of Parents of Children with Cancer - NURDOR, regularly volunteers in the activities of the association. Bogdan donates a part of the income from his books to the NURDOR association, which have been published in several editions, and on social platforms he motivates a large number of his followers to get involved in philanthropic initiatives. These two young people became an inspiration for other people to initiate similar actions, as well as to join humanitarian initiatives, thus giving best contribution to the development of philanthropy.



by Vanja Kovačev

Belgrade Philharmonic Hall at 7:00

Tuesday, 2 February 2021 CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT

French Impressionist Music for Oboe and Harp Sanja Romić, oboe and Milana Zarić, harp

Wednesday, 3 February 2021 CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT

D. Shostakovich: String quartet No. 7 in F sharp minor L. van Beethoven: Septet op. 20 in E flat major Belgrade Philharmonic String Quartet Ognjen Popović, clarinet, Dušan Petrović, bassoon, Nikola Ćirić, horn, Jelena Dragnić, violin, Aleksandar Latković, violoncello, and Boban Stošić, double bass.

Thursday, 4 February, Friday, 5 February and Saturday, 6 February 2021

Gabriel Feltz, conductor F. Mendelssohn: The Hebrides, overture F. Mendelssohn: The Fair Melusina, overture F. Mendelson: Symphony No. 4

Tuesday, 9 February 2021 CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT

F. Mendelssohn: Piano trio No. 1 in D minor J. Brahms: Piano trio u B major Mirjana Nešković, violin, Dušan Kočišević, violoncello, and Slađana Gajić, piano

Wednesday, 10 February 2021 CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT

L. van Beethoven: String quartet No. 4 op. 18 in C minor W. A. Mozart: Divertimento No. 15 K 137 in B flat major Miroslav Pavlović, first violin, Ksenija Milošević, second violin, Ivana Uzelac, viola, and Katarina Stanković, violoncello

Thursday, 11 February, Friday, 12 February and Saturday, 13 February 2021

Gabriel Feltz, conductor I. Stravinsky: Pulcinella, suite G. Mahler: Adagietto from Symphony No. 5 F. Schubert: Symphony No. 6 D589 in C major

Belgrade Tourism Fair April 8 – 11, 2021 This expo is ranked as the largest tourist event in the country and Southeast Europe. Fulfilling the international business standards for more than 30 years, it has created partner relationships with its exhibitors, offering quality and various activities and attracting a huge number of exhibitors every year.


CLICK TO GO  www.diplomacyandcommerce.rs