The Serbian Business Registers Agency (SBRA) was established by the Business Registers Agency Law. The Business Registers Agency was established with the support of the Swedish Government (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency), the World Bank, Microsoft – Serbia and Montenegro and USAID.
In 2005 the Republic of Serbia began to implement reforms in the area of business registration, aimed at facilitating the setting up and closing down of businesses, cutting administrative obstacles for doing business, improving the environment for larger foreign investments and establishing conditions for generating many more new jobs. The Serbian Business Registers Agency took charge of the implementation of reforms in the area of business registration and pioneered a registration system for financial leasing and pledge rights on movable assets and rights.
With the establishment of the Serbian Business Registers Agency, the planned reform objectives, implemented with the administration of the World Bank, were fully accomplished:
- Administrative barriers encountered by citizens were eliminated by setting up a single registration authority in charge of managing a unified, centralized database, thereby affirming the principle of rationalization of state administration (“all registers in a single location”)
- For the first time, the legal system of the Republic of Serbia introduced the principle of “five day silence of administration” thereby affirming the principle of efficiency of public administration
- The Serbian Business Registers Agency is not funded from the budget of the Republic of Serbia, thus affirming the principle of self-financing of public bodies, from fees paid in exchange for the services provided
- The rates of the fees for these services affirming the principle of affordability of public services
- The number of staff employed and engaged at the Agency’s head office in Belgrade and its 13 organizational units replaces the staff that previously performed this work in the Commercial Courts, local self-government, organizational units of the Ministries of Internal Affairs and other. Instead of 1,500 employees in various agencies, today this work is managed by 407 staff employed or engaged, thus affirming the principle of rationalization of public administration personnel.
Founding the SBRA has brought about significant reforms in the field of business registration, as well as the harmonization of Serbia’s legislation with European standards. The first European directive instructs every member-country to form a standardized central register, a business register or a register of business entities. EU recommendations decree that the registration of business entities should become an administrative function rather than a means of taking legal control of the private sector, especially not before the start up of a business. The monitoring of activities undertaken by business entities is left to other instruments, such as regular inspections, mechanisms to enforce compliance with contracts, an efficient bankruptcy procedure, the efficient work of judicial bodies and other.