Monday, 21 December 2015

38th Sitting of the Committee on the Economy, Regional Development, Trade, Tourism and Energy

At the sitting held on 21 December, the Committee on the Economy, Regional Development, Trade, Tourism and Energy discussed the Bill on Cooperatives, Bill on Chambers of Commerce, Bill on Central Register of the Temporary Limitations of Rights of Persons Registered at the Business Registers Agency, Bill amending and modifying the Law on Privatisation, and the Bill amending and modifying the Law on the Right to Free Shares and Financial Compensation to the Citizens in the Privatisation Process, in principle.


Minister of Economy Zeljko Sertic presented the bills to the Committee members. The Bill on Cooperatives as an umbrella law solves all the problems in the field, stressed Sertic. He added that so far, cooperatives have been regulated by two inadequate and mutually uncoordinated laws. The most important bit of innovation introduced by the Bill is a solution to the problem of property-legal affairs that is conversion of publically owned land and land owned by collectives into different types of ownership, and the Bill will also simplify the establishment of cooperatives, added Minister Sertic.

The Bill on Chambers of Commerce is based on the European, continental system of operation according to which all future economic subjects will be members of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, said Sertic. He added that the membership fee will be set by the members themselves and that this Bill establishes a single chamber system. This Bill is also essential for the attraction of direct foreign investments and realisation of a dual system of education, said Sertic.

The Bill on Central Register of the Temporary Limitations of Rights of Persons Registered at the Business Registers Agency introduces the establishment of a single list of offenses by economic subjects, based on court rulings, clearly outlining sanctioned business dealings and thus preventing abuses, said the Minister of Economy. He added that the Bill was drafted in accordance with the Contract Serbia had signed with the Kingdom of Norway which had funded its drafting.

The Bill amending and modifying the Law on Privatisation, and the Bill amending and modifying the Law on the Right to Free Shares and Financial Compensation to the Citizens in the Privatisation Process concern the closing of the Privatisation Agency and transference of the remaining privatisations into the remit of the Ministry of Economy which is to see them through to completion, said Minister Sertic. He reminded the MPs that 31 December of this year marks the end of social capital in Serbia, and with it the end of the Agency as it will no longer be needed.

In the ensuing joint debate the Committee members had questions concerning the Bill on Cooperatives, the use of IPA funds, closing of the Privatisation Agency, and also criticised the centralisation of the outstanding privatisation processes.

Following the debate, the Committee members accepted all the bills, in principle, buy majority vote.

The sitting was attended by Committee members and deputy members Dragoljub Zindovic, Radmilo Kostic, Olivera Pauljeskic, Mladen Grujic, Vladimir Marinkovic, Goran Ciric, Djordje Cabarkapa, Novica Toncev, Zoran Pralica, Dragomir Karic, Goran Vukadinovic and Vladan Milosevic.

MPs who are not members of the Committee also took part in the debate.

The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairperson Aleksandra Tomic.


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