The Commission for Protection of Competition marked eight years of existence with its annual 'competition day' and a round table on competition infringement in public procurement. The gathering, which attracted around 100 participants and a large number of reporters, was held at the Palace of Serbia on April 15 2014. The event was organised by the commission with the support of the EU-funded project 'Strengthening competition in Serbia'.

The commission's representatives, the Public Procurement Administration and the State Commission for the Protection of Rights in Public Procurement Procedures, as well as academia and expert public and civil society representatives, put forth their positions on this issue. The attendees were addressed by, among others, the president of the Administrative Court.

The main conclusion was that Serbia now has in place the required legal and institutional framework, but must continue to:

  • improve the administrative capacities of the competent bodies and organisations; and
  • ensure transparency and standardise its procedures.

A major step in this direction will be achieved by adopting and publishing, among other things, general positions, instructions and opinions.

It was concluded that all authorities and stakeholders in public procurement must cooperate and act jointly, especially regarding the disclosure, prosecution and penalising of bid rigging, as one of the most serious competition infringements. The speakers stressed the importance of participation by the non-governmental sector, through the Citizens' Overseer in Public Procurement and by monitoring the work of competent bodies and organisations alike, both for the purpose of oversight and to provide assistance in obtaining public support for combating cartels, with the aim of achieving unrestricted competition and creating a functional market in Serbia.

For further information on this topic please contact Srdjana Petronijevic at Moravcevic Vojnovic i Partneri in cooperation with Schoenherr by telephone (+381 11 320 26 00), fax (+381 11 320 26 10) or email (s.petronijevic@schoenherr.rs). The Moravcevic Vojnovic i Partneri website can be accessed at www.schoenherr.rs.