Press Releases

IFC Helps Montenegrin Municipalities Improve Competitiveness and Attract Investment

In Belgrade:
Slobodan Brkic
Phone: +381 11 3023 750

Podgorica, Montenegro, September 22, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has signed agreements with Montenegro’s municipalities of Bar, Bijelo Polje, and Niksic, to jointly improve the local business environment. The signing marked the launch of the country’s subnational competitiveness project.

Improving the business environment by simplifying administrative procedures and providing better services will help reduce the cost and risk of doing business, improve competitiveness of local municipalities, and attract more foreign direct investment.

“Our activities with IFC complement our development plan. I am certain that we will reduce the administrative burden on doing business and attract new domestic and foreign investors to our municipality,” said Zarko Pavicevic, Mayor of Bar.

“By helping municipalities simplify their procedures, we hope to develop a more favorable business environment and stimulate the development of the country’s private sector,” said Philip Condon, Head of IFC Advisory Services in Southern Europe.

The subnational competitiveness project is designed to streamline business formalities and inspections procedures, according to Margo Thomas, IFC Business Enabling Environment Manager and Program Coordinator of FIAS, the World Bank Group’s Investment Climate Advisory Service. This will help increase transparency and quality of business regulations and reduce costs—important factors for improving competitiveness.

IFC is already implementing subnational competitiveness projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit

IFC and the World Bank published the first subnational Doing Business report for Southeast Europe in July this year, featuring data on Montenegro’s municipalities of Podgorica and Pljevlja. For more information, visit