Strengthen the Serbian Auto-Cluster and enhancing supplier competitiveness

In 2007, UNIDO initiated a technical assistance project to strengthen the automotive cluster and its members in Serbia, which will was finalized in December 2009.

This project sought to work directly with local component manufacturers to see what problems they were facing on the ground and help them upgrade their performance through direct counseling and shop-floor training. Besides upgrading companies, the second main element focused on the transfer of know-how and expertise to a group of Serbian counselors and cluster development agents, who are able to provide technical assistance to automotive component manufacturers over time. Finally a strong focus was set on the development of the auto-cluster organization as such. Based on good practices from the Auto-Cluster Slovenia (ACS), the Automotive Cluster of Serbia was assisted in clearly formulating its vision, strategy and business plan, which lead to increased satisfaction levels among members and built a strong basis for future collaboration.

With a view of building upon the already achieved results and continuing to provide counselling and technical assistance services, a second project phase was launched in early 2011. This phase aims at broadening and deepening the scope and outreach of the original project services, thereby further strengthening Serbian small and medium-sized automotive component suppliers to meet the requirements of global clients. Within this context, the second project phase pursues following core objectives:

  • Firstly, the project seeks to enable SMEs to improve their overall competitiveness and, therefore, to integrate successfully into national and international supply chains.
  • Secondly, it is intended to build/strengthen the institutional capacity within and around the Serbian Auto-Cluster for serving the specific needs of firms in this sector, particularly in the context of productivity and quality upgrading, and by building on the existing institutional support infrastructure.
  • Thirdly, the project aims at fostering the collective efficiency of auto-component manufacturers in the auto-cluster and enhancing their support system/infrastructure so that they are better able to exploit market opportunities through joint efforts. It will also bring together businesses with relevant government agencies (particularly at the local level), academia, educational and training institutions, industry associations, BDS providers and NGOs to enhance partnership building and collaboration in the areas of networking, productivity/quality upgrading, social responsibility of the industry, health and safety at workplace, environmental management and an enabling business environment.

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