ISSN 2330-717X

Germany Offers Expert Advice To Macedonia, Region

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By Klaudija Lutovska

In an effort to increase the quality and competitiveness of companies in Macedonia, small- and medium-sized enterprises now have the opportunity to solicit advice from senior experts from the German Senior Expert Service.

The service is comprised of 9,000 experts from 50 different sectors — including trade, chemistry, wood industry, textiles, energy, crafts, services, agriculture and the food industry.

The nonprofit organisation is headquartered in Bonn, with 14 offices in Germany and more than 140 representatives worldwide to maintain a network of senior experts.

Macedonia
Macedonia

These retired experts, mostly from Germany and other western European countries, are able to give advice to businesses in the region on how to improve production, how to enter the western European market and gain partners, how to make changes in the structure of a firm and how to enhance competitiveness.

Representatives of the German economy in Macedonia and the Macedonian-German Economic Association, which has been active in the Macedonian market for 12 years, aim to support German companies that are interested in the Macedonian market.

Germany is Macedonia’s largest trade partner; Macedonia exports goods worth 870m euros annually to Germany and imports goods worth 474m euros annually.

“This is an excellent opportunity to develop the Macedonian economy. We will make efforts to advise our members to apply and enter into agreements with [the service] and to intensify co-operation with them,” Jove Brglevski, president of the Business Confederation of Macedonia office in Bitol, told SETimes.

Michael Schmitt, director of the German economy in Macedonia, said that the interest of Macedonian firms in the German market is growing.

“The goal is to come and give support to companies, especially to small and medium firms to become more competitive, to have better performance in the market and help in finding new business partners,” he said.

One company in Macedonia that has had experience with the service experts is Motion Universe Company, a small business that produces computer games with 20 employees, located in Bitola.

The company contacted the service due to a need for advice on expanding into the EU and international markets.

“We applied and used the service twice with the same expert in marketing consulting [ones in 2011 and second time in 2012]. What started as a marketing consultancy also turned into a business strategy consultancy that helped us to focus and prosper,” Motion Universe owner Nikola Tanchevski told SETimes.

By extending their outsourcing services, the company created and promoted several cross-platform / cross-media products. The expansion created several new positions for employment and opened new possibilities to join the international market.

“Expanding the market, strengthening the brands and building products that will sell with a good marketing strategy for us means more work and more revenue in term creating new possibilities for business and new work places in the company,” Tanchevski said.

The project is also known in other countries in the region. Since 2002, service experts have participated in contracts in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro and Macedonia.

Dragan Jankovic, director of the Serbian municipality of Indjija’s Development Agency, said that this is a great opportunity to develop a free engagement of experts.

“The government of Germany directly supports the project. In more than 1,500 cases have provided support to companies worldwide restructuring of enterprises technical and technological advancement, promotion of exports and the introduction of standards and EU regulations, professional training of cadres,” Jankovic said.

SETimes

SETimes

The Southeast European Times Web site is a central source of news and information about Southeastern Europe in ten languages: Albanian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Croatian, English, Greek, Macedonian, Romanian, Serbian and Turkish. The Southeast European Times is sponsored by the US European Command, the joint military command responsible for US operations in 52 countries. EUCOM is committed to promoting stability, co-operation and prosperity in the region.

3 thoughts on “Germany Offers Expert Advice To Macedonia, Region

  • Avatar
    August 6, 2012 at 4:11 am
    Permalink

    It is no secret that we need a lot more business opportunites here. With 39-41% unemployment nationwide and especially that many of these stats represent the young indigenous Albanians unable to find work due to discriminatory policies practiced by the the skopjian authorities and reflected by many of the Slavic employers.

    But it is also no secret that many German and other European business experts are wary to openly invest due to the skopjian governments lack of regulatory structures to weed out the rampant corruption and clientelism among the high-end Slav employers.

    With a bit of luck maybe the Germans and other EU members can educate new moderate Slav professionals who will oversee the implementation of new labour laws where everybody is treated equal.

    Just imagine if many of these racist individuals who run the skopjian government had an understanding of treating all their citizenry equal and what that would do to unemployment.

    But 39-41% unemployment is not good enough.

    The skopjian leadership need to pull their finger out and instead of smelling it, wash it, and address this social insecurity that they continue to support.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    August 6, 2012 at 8:19 am
    Permalink

    Nice comment Sam, but please leave the hatred and racism. A foreign investor does not want to deal with racist demands when investing in Macedonia. Usually they want all documentation to be done in their native language (german, English, etc) and one local language, not 2. The investor also cannot employ interpreters like the government because a minority refuses to learn the language of the majority. The investor needs workers who will come to work, not play political games, as is rampant in the Macedonian public service.
    Only recently we all saw publically how the Macedonian government had to meet a quota of employed albanians in all levels of management also and the most elementary thing, a postage stamp was printed for mass use with the country name mispelt! That would never be tolerated in the west, who’s investment we so desparately need!
    If the albanians hate Macedonia so much, please learn German, or English or French and apply for employment when companies from those countries invest in Macedonia, I am sick and tired of reading how the Albanians are discriminated, and I am a Turk from Macedonia!
    In Turkey, Turkish is the common langauage, in Albania, Albanian and in Germany German! Enough!

    Reply
  • Avatar
    August 7, 2012 at 11:19 am
    Permalink

    Sorry Mr Ace but we all know how to speak all the slavic languages in the Balkans so please this is vey distateful to imply that Albanians were responsible for the incompetence shown by some individual who mispelt a name.

    Please save us from your typical slavic patronising fluster. You are as much Turkish as we are Germans. The skopjian authorities claim equality among its citizens on paper but in reality our civil rights are abused continuously.

    By the way I think that more of the young indigenous Albanians of FYROM speak English, german, french in addition to all the Slavic languages in the Balkans than do the educated skopjians authorities, let alone the peasantry.

    No Mr Ace language is not the problem. It is jobs that nepotism within this corrupt system is supported by the skopjians leadership to keep our people financially disadvantaged.

    Reply

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