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Montenegro is situated in Southeastern Europe. The country lies on the coast of the Adriatic Sea and borders Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the southeast.

According to the CIA Factbook, Montenegro covers a total area of 13,812 square kilometres and is the 161st largest country in the world. Estimates in 2010 put the population at 666,730 with 43% Montenegrin, 32% Serbian, 8% Bosniak, 5% Albanian and the remainder a mix of Muslims, Croats and Roma people. The official language of Montenegro is Montenegrin although Serbian, Bosnian amd Albanian is also widely spoken.

The country has a population density of 50/km2, ranking it 121st versus other countries across the globe.

Having gained independence from Serbia and Montenegro in 2006, the country became a parlimentry republic and adopted a new constitution in 2007. The President of Montenegro (Filip Vujanović) is the Head of State, whilst the executive branch of government is presided over by the Prime Minister (Milo Đukanović).

The country is comprised of 21 municipalities and 2 urban muncipalities which are sub divisions of the capital city Podgorica.

Montenegro adopted the Euro as its official currency in 2002.

Montenegro participates in a number of international organisations including the United Nations, UNESCO, IMF and WTO.


The CIA estimated Montenegro’s GDP in 2009 at $4.152 billion and a GDP (PPP) $6.59 billion. GDP per capita stood at $9,300 in the same year, ranking it the 197th richest country in the world.

Montenegro is still in the process of moving from a transitional to a market economy. According to World Bank statistics in 2009, the country’s economy is driven by its large services sector that generates 73% of the national GDP and a strong industry sector that accounts for around 18% of GDP. Main industries include steel making, aluminium production, agricultural processing, consumer goods and tourism.

Tourism is quickly emerging as a key player, with around one million visitors visiting the country each year. It is widely forecasted that this sector will form the backbone of future economic growth and it is here that the government is focusing substantial investment.

The country’s thriving agricultural sector generates around 9% of national GDP. Food stuffs produced include tobacco, potatoes, citrus fruits, olives, grapes and meat products.

Trade with other EU countries accounts for over 50% of Montenegro’s imports and exports. Montenegro’s commodities are exported primarily to Italy 29%, Greece 23%, Slovenia 12% and Hungary 9%.

Montenegro also imports a number of products, primarily machinery and equipment, chemicals, fuels and manufactured goods with 17% coming from Italy, 15% Slovenia, 11% Germany ad 8% Austria.


Montenegro is connected by a large road system that stretches 7,404 kilometres, 4,927 kilometres of which are paved. The government has directed significant investment in recent years to improve the
road infrastructure to allow for faster and safer travel in the country and tenders have been launched to construct north-south and east-west motorway corridors.

The CIA Factbook estimates that the railways throughout the country consist of 250 kilometres of electrified, normal gauge and single track. The track links the Port of Bar to the capital city of Podgorica and Bijelo-Polje before going up to Belgrade, the capital of Serbia. Railways also link Podgorica to Nikšic and Albania via Tuzi. Both tracks are for passengers and cargo transport (currently the Podgorica to Nikisic track is undergoing extensive renovation). In 2007 the railway was estimated to have transported over 1,188,000 passengers and 1,761,000 tonnes of goods.

The CIA Factbook estimated that in 2010 Montenegro had 5 operational airports, 4 of them with paved runways and two that are international (Podgorica and Tivat International Airports). Both airports are similar sizes, operating flights to and from major cities across Europe. Official statistics estimated that in 2009 the combined airports moved over 1 million passengers.

Montenegro has 4 main passengers and cargo ports, namely Bar, Herceg Novi, Tivat and Zelenika. The Port of Bar is the main seaport, taking 95% of passenger and frieght transport. The port is capable of handling around 5 million tonnes of cargo.


Montengro Statistics in 2010 estimated Montenegro’s labour force at 202,000. 76% of the labour force work in services sector with primary industries including retail, tourism, transport, education and health.

19% work in the industrial sector which is dominated by mining and manufacturing industries. At 4.5%, the smallest proportion of the work force work in agriculture producing tobacco, potatoes, citrus fruits, olives, grapes and meat products.

The labour force is a predominantly a mixture of Montenegrin, Serbian, Bosniak and Albanian people.

Since becoming part of the Bologna Declaration in 2004, Montenegro has dedicated 25% of public expenditure to reforming the education system. Regulated by the Montenegrin Ministry of Education and Science, school attendance is compulsory and free for nine years and commences in primary school when children are 6 years old. Secondary schools are divided into three types (gymnasiums, professional and vocational schools) depending on the childs abilities and choice.

The country has one public university (University of Montenegro) and two private ones (University Mediterranean and the University of Donja Gorica.

According to the Montenegrin Employment Office, unemployment in 2010 stood at 12.17%

Business Costs

Montenegro’s individual income tax rate is set at a flat rate of 9%. In addition individuals are expected to pay a municipal tax of up to 15% on salary income.

Social Security due by employee are levied at a rate of 16.5% and includes contributions for pension, health and unemployment.

To stimulate the start of new businesses and encourage foreign investment, corporate taxation is set at the low rate of 9%, one of the most competitive in Europe. Capital gains are included as normal income but only in an amount corresponding to 50% of the gain and taxed at the standard rate.

The standard VAT rate in Montenegro is 17%, whilst a reduced VAT of 7% can be applied to various goods including basic foods, medicines, textbooks, hotels and other visitors accomodation. Exports are subject to 0% VAT whilst exemptions exist for financial services.

In 2007 Montenegro set a minimum wage of €55 per month for adults engaged in full time work.
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