Bosnia and Herzegovina: Blog #5

welcome to bosnia



In 2003, Bosnia and Herzegovina adopted the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens. This law means that an alien who has been granted residency on humanitarian grounds is entitled to work, will be ensured education, health and social care under the same conditioned as the citizens. This legislation protects these aliens from their lives being arbitrarily taken, being subjected to torture, cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) states that most people that are admitted temporarily come from Serbia and Montenegro. Bosnia and Herzegovina has signed an Agreement on Dual Citizenship with these countries. Although according to the immigrants who have been approved residency in Bosnia after their three year stay, they are entitled to apply for citizenship, but allegations from the UNHCR say that these people face discrimination by Bosnia and Herzegovina institutions because their applications are citizenship are denied (source).

Labor Market

In June of 2015, regulations of employment were updated and are in effect which will affect specifically local entrepreneurs. When it comes to hiring, the minimum wage per month for an employee is 376.70 USD and the maximum length for fixed-term contracts, including renewals is 24 months. When it comes to working, the maximum numbers of working days per week are 6, and there are no restrictions on overtime work. For job quality, a woman cannot receive 100% of wages on maternity leave, and there cannot be gender discrimination when hiring (source). Although there have been some steps to reform, the labor market is inefficient and the unemployment rate, mostly among the youth, is one of the region’s highest. The World Bank says, the government subsidizes energy and targets its agricultural subsidies poorly. Bosnia and Herzegovina’s economic freedom status is mostly unfree (source).

Expatriate Community 

A majority of expats living in Bosnia and Herzegovina are located in Sarajevo and are mostly employees by non-governmental organizations or international organizations. Getting a work permit for the country is a long process and it is said that expats should prepare themselves for bureaucratic backlogs. Some entrepreneurs are starting to see the potential of Bosnia and Herzegovina for setting up businesses (source). Although there wasn’t any information about what businesses were popular for expats, many expats like their line of work and say once they have learned to navigate the culture even after the devastation of the war, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a beautiful country to live in (source).


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