Official title of the project

Strengthening Consumer Protection in Serbia

Project information

Region / City
Cities
Serbia
Total budget of programme / project

2.260.500,00 EUR

Implementation period
2011. Aug - 2014. Feb
Expected results

Component 1. Review of the existing Consumer Protection legislation & preparation of by-laws and implementing regulations

  1. National Strategy for Consumer Protection for 2012-2017 drafted and assistance for its adoption provided; 1.1. Report on consumer protection legislation drafted and recommendations agreed; 1.2.Implementing legislation drafted, adopted and assistance provided for enforcement; new legislation prepared.

 

Component 2.Institutional capacity-building to ensure vigorous enforcement of Consumer Protection rules

2.1. Report on institutional framework drafted and Action Plan agreed; 2.2.Training needs assessment report and Action Plan produced and agreed; 2.3.Trainings delivered; 2.4. Study visits implemented; 2.5.“On-the-job” assistance provided; 2.Official consumer protection website upgraded, consumer complaints register operational /pilot

Component 3.Activities to raise Consumer Protection awareness to ensure widest possible knowledge & understanding of consumer rights in the society

3.1.Public surveys executed; 3.2.Seminars/workshops on awareness raising techniques delivered; 3.3. Awareness raising events completed, reports agreed; 3.4. Seminars/workshops for business & legal community delivered; 3.5.Events targeted to journalists delivered; 3.6.Educational/promotional materials developed, published &distributed.

Beneficiary

Ministry of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Water Management of the Republic of Serbia is the direct Project beneficiary. Within the MATFWM, the Consumer Protection Department in the Sector for Trade, Services, Prices and Consumer Protection is the one responsible on consumer affairs.

 

Partners

This project is funded by EU and implemented by European Profiles S.A. in consortium with IBF International Consulting, ATC Consultants, the Austrian Association for Consumer’s Information (VKI) and Baines Babic. 

Summary of the project

The establishment of an efficient consumer protection system in Serbia aligned to the standards of the European Union will play a significant role in the EU’s decision on Serbia’s prospective membership. While good progress has been achieved especially with the adoption of the 2010 framework Law on Consumer Protection that transposed 14 relevant EU directives, the effective implementation of existing laws remains an issue. The institutional framework for consumer policy in Serbia must be strengthened with a special emphasis on law enforcement means. Non-governmental consumer organisations are still weak and lack adequate resources and public awareness raising activities need to be further developed.

The Project – Strengthening Consumer Protection in Serbia - started on 10th August 2011 and will have duration of 30 months. Its implementation has been mandated to a consortium managed by European Profiles S.A. (Greece) in association with IBF International Consulting (Belgium), ATC Consultants (Austria), The Austrian Association for Consumer’s Information VKI (Austria) and Baines Babic through its subsidiary Halifax Consulting based in Belgrade.

Programme/Project objectives

The project aims at contributing to the protection of consumer rights and interests in Serbia in accordance with the EU Acquis.

Specific objectives

i.    To assist the MATFSW in further alignment of the Serbian consumer protection legal framework with the EU Acquis, including through the adoption of relevant by-laws and implementing regulations.

ii.  To strengthen the institutional capacity of MATFSW, the out-of-court dispute settlement bodies, the courts, consumer associations &other relevant authorities, for enforcement of the new consumer protection legislation and in line with EU Acquis and best practices.

iii. To strengthen cooperation and coordination among public institutions and private bodies involved in consumer protection in Serbia, in order to promote a uniform application of consumer legislative framework.

iv. To increase awareness on consumer protection policy among public and private sector stakeholders.