The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia (CCIS) and the Ohio Department of Development (ODD) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation in the Field of Economic Development today. This is the first economic agreement that CCIS has signed with an American National Association aimed at strengthening and improving economic relations between the two countries, connecting business communities, encouraging investments by companies from Ohio in Serbia, as well as increasing the export of Serbian products and services to this US market.
The Memorandum has been signed by Mihailo Vesović, CCIS Director of Division for Strategic Analyses, Services and Internationalization and Lydia Mihalik, ODD Director, and the ceremony in the Chamber was attended by Major General John Harris, who leads the state delegation of Ohio visiting Serbia, Marko Djurić, Ambassador of the Republic of Serbia to the U.S. and Christopher Hill, the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Serbia.
“This is an exceptionally important day for bilateral and economic US-Serbia relations. By signing the Memorandum between the Chamber and the Ohio Department of Development, we are extending the existing cooperation between the two countries to the civil sector, and this is an important message for American businesspeople and investors, as well as for Serbian businesspeople. We will work on organizing the visit of a business delegation that will go from Serbia to Ohio next year, and I hope that Ohio delegation will also come to Serbia. In previous years, CCIS has worked to significantly improve the economic relations between Serbia and the U.S., which are very specific and dominated by the most modern services sector, whereas our exports recorded a surplus with the USA,” said Vesović.
Vesović has also pointed out that there is a long-lasting and good climate of understanding and cooperation between the two sides that will contribute to the full utilization of domestic economic potential in order to increase the level of the U.S. investments in Serbia.
“Through this agreement, Ohio and Serbia forge a powerful partnership, united by the shared vision of driving economic growth and prosperity. This collaborative commitment paves the way for innovation, trade, and mutual benefit, as we harness the strength of our regions to create a vibrant and prosperous future”, said Mihailik.
“This agreement builds upon a strong foundation of cooperation between Ohio and Serbia. For 18 years, the Ohio National Guard and the Serbian Armed Forces have participated in security cooperation activities under the State Partnership Program. Those activities have included visits and exchanges, military training and exercises, information sharing, disaster preparedness collaboration and professional development. The groundwork laid by those efforts resulted in wide-ranging cooperation between Ohio and Serbia including the economic agreement signed today”, Said Harris.
Ambassador Djurić pointed out that today, in Belgrade “an important seed of cooperation between Serbia and Ohio in the economic sphere has been planted” and expressed his belief that the signing of the Memorandum will lead to new investments, exchange of experience, and an opportunity to bring economic cooperation between the two countries to a new level.
Ambassador Hill welcomed the signing of the Memorandum and stated that he is obliged to encourage the other 49 states of the U.S. to follow Ohio’s example, because, as he pointed out, when such an important agreement is reached with a large state such as Ohio and an institution such as CCIS, it can lead to great results only.
ODD representatives visit Serbia for the first time as part of the traditional visit of the Ohio National Guard to Serbia in September.
ODD is the Ohio National Agency that assists businesspeople and companies to expand and internationalize their businesses, invest abroad, connect with business partners, participate in fairs and other world events.