Stronger domestic economy - Digital support for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Motivated by the desire to enable easier access to information for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, the European Union (EU) and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany (BMZ) co-financed the launch of Help Desk - information platforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the EU4Business and COVID-19 Investment Response/EU4Business Recovery projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina that provide support to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.
Strong partners - the Chamber of Economy of the Federation of BiH, the Chamber of Commerce of Republika Srpska and the Chamber of Commerce of the Brčko District of BiH, made it possible for three information platforms to function in Bosnia and Herzegovina:
- Bizhub: e-regulation, e-consulting, e-finance, e-learning, e-networking (Chamber of Economy of FBiH)
- InfoBiz: eRegulation, finance, B2B platform, eEducation (Chamber of Commerce of RS)
- Chamber of Commerce of Brčko District BiH: finances, consulting, information
The final conferences in Sarajevo, Banja Luka and Brčko formalized the end of the projects, but the information platforms- Bizhub, Infobiz, and the Help Desk of the Chamber of Commerce of the Brčko District, which have had over 60.000 visits so far, will continue to provide support to companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Thanks to the established Help Desk information platforms, businessmen and businesswomen in Bosnia and Herzegovina have adopted new technologies and strengthened competitiveness, making challenging times during and after the COVID-19 pandemic an opportunity for learning, connecting and strengthening cooperation. With improved capacities and operations, the users of Help Desk information platforms make the economy of Bosnia and Herzegovina stronger.
Bizhub: e-regulation, e-consulting, e-finance, e-learning, e-networking
The Bizhub platform consists of several modules, namely: e-regulation, e-consulting, e-finance, e-learning, e-networking and recorded more than 30,000 domestic and foreign visits in the period from April 2022 to March 2023, indicating that the target group of project users recognized the importance of this platform as a unique tool, providing all relevant and timely information about the current affairs of the BiH economy, but also at global level.
Within the e-learning module alone, 13 free trainings were implemented, which were attended by a total of 361 participants from micro, small and medium-sized enterprises - this was pointed out at the final conference of the project Covid-19 Business Information Hub – Help Desk. Mrs. Eva Maria Naeher, who spoke at the conference on behalf of GIZ BiH, pointed out that the motive for implementing the project is to provide support to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises primarily from the metal and wood sector, but also to all other sectors in the recovery process, and also to enable their business continuity, to strengthen their competencies and increase resilience in challenging times.
InfoBiz: eRegulations, finances, B2B platform, eEducations
The InfoBiz platform contains necessary services and information for businesses, about significant regulations, opportunities for education, obtaining grants, and opportunities to connect with potential partners. It enables its users to access and dispose of all current information about current regulations of importance for the economy, and its most significant segment is interaction with businessmen who also have access to the Viber application.
In addition, the InfoBiz digital platform also provides access to finances, through which businessmen can quickly and easily obtain information on current open calls for applying for grant funds, offered by government institutions, European and international funds, as well as commercial banks and microcredit organizations.
"InfoBiz" has had over 30,000 visits so far; seven free training sessions were held, attended by more than 400 participants from 215 companies. B2B meetings were also held in the metal and wood industry, and in the tourism sector.
Chamber of Commerce of the Brčko District of BiH: finances, consulting, information
Part of the website of the Chamber of Commerce of the Brčko District of BiH is the Help Desk system, which contains a financial, advisory and informative component with the aim of providing information on the funds of international and domestic donors, monitoring business news and providing support in overcoming barriers for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises. 15 training sessions were held for more than 200 participants and over 60 newsletters were distributed. Also, memorandums of cooperation were signed with institutions from the Brčko District.
By co-financing the Help Desk of the information platform, the European Union (EU) and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany (BMZ), as well as GIZ, which implemented the project, necessary information, trainings, counselings and organization of B2B meetings and networking were provided. In this way, Bosnian entrepreneurs received support in overcoming the most difficult period of the pandemic, as well as the challenging times in doing business following the pandemic. New technologies were adopted, which strengthened companies' competitiveness and ability to solve challenges posed by global trends.
The crisis caused by the pandemic, through the European project COVID-19 Investment Response/EU4Business Recovery , provided domestic entrepreneurs with the opportunity to develop new technologies, strengthen, connect and adapt. With the established Help Desk systems that continue to function, the domestic economy has become stronger .