Contributing 4.24% to the gross domestic product, while ensuring 32% of the total country’s export, metal-processing sector is one of the main drivers of growth in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Most companies in this sector are small and medium sized producing mainly aluminum products, electric products and automotive industry products.
In order to grow further, companies need to improve their market access, e.g. how they enter markets, or to take an active approach to find new customers. Likewise, an intensified cooperation between the companies and academia and R&D institutions would enhance innovation and help companies keep up with the paces of international markets.
Competitiveness of small and medium–sized enterprises in selected value chains of metal- processing sector has improved.
EU ProLocal Programme helps companies within selected value chains of the metal-processing industry to successfully address impediments to their competitiveness.
The survey of these value chains revealed that the main constraints to the companies’ further growth are in the categories of market access, optimization of business operations, quality improvements and networking and promotion of innovative activities.
EU ProLocal tailored its assistance to the identified constraints. Specifically, the Programme implements the following:
- Supports companies to establish new contacts with potential customers, through for example: organisation of B2B meetings, buyers’ missions, or support to attend exhibitions and trade fairs;
- Raises awareness of the companies about advantages of the joint procurement of production inputs;
- Supports development of workforce capacities in marketing and sales.
- Helps companies pinpoint the possibilities for improvement of their business processes as well as to optimize them;
- Helps companies upgrade the existing knowledge, skills and practices in the areas such as welding, work on CNC, 3D modelling or product design or in other areas based on the identified needs;
- Helps companies establish cooperation with product design universities/ faculties from Germany;
- Supports companies to achieve the quality standards and requirements to obtain certificates sought in international markets;
- Supports institutions in quality assurance to achieve the accreditation standards ;
- Raises awareness of the energy efficiency and environment;
- Supports exchange of information and intensification of cooperation among companies;
- Assists private and public sector stake-holders and academia to develop cooperation models for the purpose of research and development of new products;
- Helps companies to learn about good innovation practices from German companies;
- Raises awareness of innovation and promotes boost of innovation within companies.