Montenegro is first Corona Free country in Europe

Montenegro is the first country in Europe without infected with coronavirus, it is equally the success of the state, its institutions, and each individual, as of today our country is also known on all meridians for the result it has achieved in fight against the invisible and unknown enemy, now we focus to preserve and recover our economy, jobs and standards of our citizens, and we will win this battle successfully, said Prime Minister Duško Markovic at a press conference held a day after the Public Health Institute declared that there are no more COVID – 19 patients in our country.


“On behalf of the Government and in my own name, I would like to congratulate everyone, who was on the first line of defence, namely: doctors, nurses and technicians, pharmacists and all health care employees; Members of the police, the security services and the Armed Forces of Montenegro, who took care for the application of measures and at the same time maintained order, peace and safety of every citizen; No less – and to all members of inspections, security services, postal officers, volunteers and employees of city services; Aircraft crews, airport services and transport workers; Employees in supermarkets and shops, who provided services on a daily basis, not allowing scenarios of endless lines, empty shelves and discomfort in our homes. I voice my due gratitude to the educators, who ensured the continuity of teaching and responded to my request, for organising the curriculum outside the classroom and from home. Therefore, our children finish school in 15 days, and do not repeat the school year! I show respect to all of you who were in quarantine and self-isolation, and to all of you who stayed at home and respected the measures and recommendations in every way – because that is how you saved yourself from others and others from yourself; This is an opportunity to say that there are more than five thousand individuals and companies that have recognised the need and made donations. And we have saved every euro attached, and from that money we will build clinics, which will serve our society and the public health! We owe gratitude to journalists and the media – because you informed about everything objectively and in a timely manner; I am grateful to the officials in the state administration and the members of the operational staffs, who demonstrated an ability to make the right decisions quickly and implement them with the necessary precision. I would also like to thank the PR team that made itself available to the Public Health Institute. Our institutions did not wait for the orders, but from the very first moment stood in defence of the citizens, their lives and health. That is the best answer to the criticism that reluctance and ignorance are living in our institutions, and the best confirmation that the state and citizens have someone to rely on,” the Prime Minister said at a press conference, broadcasted live by Montenegrin televisions.

The result we can be proud of binds us

The Prime Minister noted that we can be proud of the result, but that it obliges us to continue with a responsible attitude, in order to overcome the consequences of the economic crisis that hit us and prevent a new wave of epidemics if it occurs.

The Prime Minister pointed out that this result did not come by itself, on the contrary, and reminded of the way in which our country has opposed the pandemic in recent months.

“Let me note that the National Coordination Body met practically every other day and held 35 sessions, at which 69 orders were passed. That Montenegro managed to be – the last country in Europe where Covid – 19 was registered, without introducing of a state of emergency, and without curfew. And to be the first country in Europe to defeat it. Our strategy is to always be one step ahead. We reacted to the first appearance of the virus in European countries. Let me remind you, the first measure was adopted on 9 January, and the first restriction for passengers in international traffic on 15 January, i.e. two months before the registered case of the disease. By timely formation of the National Coordination Body, we have ensured unified crisis planning, unified coordination of institutions and timeliness in informing the public,” said the Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Duško Markovic reminded that Montenegro did not close the borders for our citizens, it provided sufficient medical equipment and protected all those who were exposed to immediate danger.

“In that way, we relieved our health care system. That was our main goal – not to fill hospitals with patients. We decided to stop the virus at the borders of Montenegro. And on the internal level – not to allow it to infiltrate into our homes. That is why we succeeded,” said Prime Minister Duško Markovic.

The Prime Minister recalled of the two adopted packages of economic measures and announced the third one, which is directed towards recovery of our economy and the assistance to entrepreneurs and citizens.

Opening of borders soon and another easing of measures

Prime Minister Duško Marković announced the opening of borders, first for the citizens of those countries that are successfully dealing with the coronavirus.

“As of today, the National Coordination Body for Communicable Diseases, with its eight operational staffs and over a hundred people involved in depth, has the task of finding the best solutions that will enable the start of our economy, that will open borders and enable arrival of tourists, as well as to further mitigate measures, which will have an impact on the internal situation and life of citizens. Our intention is to open kindergartens, preschools, playrooms, bishops and theaters as early as next week; To enable a limited audience to follow sports events, while respecting the protection measures. Christenings, weddings and family celebrations will be allowed – also with health and security measures and restrictions on the number of attendees. And in accordance with the assessment made, the opening of borders with countries that meet the appropriate epidemiological criteria of the Public Health Institute, is expected in the first days of June. Currently, it reads a maximum of 25 patients per 100,000 inhabitants and the first countries with which we will open the borders are: Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Albania, Greece and possibly some countries in the region until the order is passed and entered into force. Global trends also pointed to the expansion of the circle of countries to which we could open the border. This will start our aircraft and air industry, encourage our tourism and enable work in related activities,” the Prime Minister stated.

Montenegro is today recognised as a Corona Free country

Prime Minister Duško Marković concluded that today the Corona Free status is the emblem of Montenegro on all meridians.

“As of today, Montenegro is special regarding the result it has achieved in the fight against the invisible and unknown enemy. Therefore, I once again congratulate the National Coordination Body on the excellent and strategic management, during the coronavirus epidemic. Today, we are already in the field of preserving and recovering our economy, preserving jobs and the standards of our citizens. I assure you that we will win this battle, as successfully, as we won the previous one to preserve the health and lives of our citizens. Let’s be responsible and in solidarity for the good of our Montenegro,” Prime Minister Duško Marković concluded at the press conference.

Partnership with citizens was the most important thing

Answering journalists’ questions, the Prime Minister emphasised that there was nothing we could have done, that we did not do. The most important decision is considered by the Prime Minister to be the visionary approach of our health system and especially the Institute of Public Health, which gave the first recommendations about two months before the first registered case in our country. The Prime Minister also assessed, the successful organisation of quarantine and self-isolation, as important.

The Prime Minister highlighted that the partnership with the citizens showed to be the key orientation. In support of that, he stated that Montenegro is a country that had among the highest degrees of freedom for citizens. “We have made the best decisions. This is a common result of both, the institutions and the individuals in them, and the citizens who have followed all these recommendations. And that is why we have the opportunity to celebrate today,” said the Prime Minister. He added that he did not propose a state of emergency, nor would he propose it in some new circumstances, because it turned out that Montenegro has the institutional capacity and that the citizens have shown loyalty and discipline.


Three companies chosen as agents for Montenegrin passport for investment program

Alex capital partners, Arton group and Henley and Partners Government Services have been selected as brokering agents when applying for Montenegrin economic citizenship, the Government’s Secretariat for Development Projects has decided.

The decision on the choice of agents was made on Wednesday, with a 30-day deadline for drafting the contract, which the Government should then conclude with these companies.

“21 applications were received at the Secretariat for Development Projects, and another one was received after the deadline,” said the decision signed by the Secretary of the Secretariat, Dejan Medojevic.

The public call for the selection of mediation agents, announced on January 3, stipulated that only companies whose responsible persons had not been sentenced to imprisonment for more than a year and who had at least three years of experience in three countries, of which one in the European Union.

The decision on the criteria for acquiring Montenegrin citizenship for the purpose of realization of investments is in force from January 1 this year and on the basis of it, up to 2,000 Montenegrin passports will be issued on the basis of it in the next three years.


U.S. companies eye LNG exports to Europe via Montenegro’s Bar port

U.S. companies have expressed interest in the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe through Montenegro’s Bar port, Montenegro’s economy minister Dragica Sekulic said on Monday.



“Negotiations have begun between U.S. and Montenegrin companies on the potential cooperation in the field of storage and distribution of natural gas from the United States,” Sekulic said in a video file posted on the website of Montenegrin public broadcaster RTCG.

Aluminium smelter KAP has already started using LNG, which has led to a significant reduction of particulate matter emissions, while steel mill Toscelik Niksic is working on replacing fuel oil with LNG, Sekulic also said.

Using the port of Bar for the transhipment and storage of LNG would have positive effects on the development of the country’s infrastructure and industry, she added.

Earlier this month, the executive director of port operator Luka Bar, Vladan Vucelic, said the company is considering building an LNG terminal to handle imports of U.S. liquefied natural gas into Europe. Luka Bar may invest in the implementation of the project alone, or through some form of partnership, he noted.


WizzAir introduces new line between Podgorica and Vienna from July

Low-cost airline WizzAir is opening a new line from Podgorica to Vienna from July 3, twice a week, on Fridays and Mondays.



According to sources, it is a seasonal line, but there is a possibility that it will be extended and WizzAir maintains the line throughout the year.

Tickets can be purchased from € 19.99.

WizzAir already has flights from Podgorica to Munich, Budapest, Milan, Katowice and Warsaw.


Economic Citizenship Effects: Four projects approved, four hotels being built

The Government of Montenegro has announced the effects of the economic citizenship project so far, on the basis of which construction of four top category hotels has started in Montenegro.



The first project on economic citizenship was approved in June this year for the construction of a condominium hotel in Kolasin, owned by Kolasin Resort & Spa.

“In November, the government accepted three more projects: the construction of a hotel in Kolasin by investors from Russia, the Queen’s Beach Hotel in Milocer by the investor “Adriatic properties” and the Durmitor Hotel in Zabljak by an investor from Greece, the Autumn Analysis of Macroeconomic Trends and structural reforms quotes.

To recapitulate, for potential investors not familiar with the program, Montenegrin government introduced the project of economic citizenship from the beginning of the year 2019., in order to stimulate investments in Montenegro.

The project defines application costs in the amount of EUR 100.000, and a minimum investment of EUR 450.000 for coastal and capital area projects, and EUR 250.000 for projects in the less developed but resource-rich northern region.

The number of applications is limited to two thousand over a three-year period.


Passport by investment throughout the globe

In addition to obtaining it by birth and possibility to lose it, citizenship can be earned and bought today, and that is all, according to the BBC, a vague concept demonstrated by the fact that citizenship is today a global industry, worth approximately 22,8 billion euros.



“The traditional idea of ​​citizenship has fallen behind. It’s one of the few things in the world that we still associate with blood or birthplace, ”said Christian Kalin, a Swiss lawyer and board member of Henley & Partners, one of the world’s largest players in this fast-growing market. They actually help rich individuals and their families obtain residency or citizenship in other countries.

“The system is not fair because where we were born and who gave birth to us, has nothing to do with our abilities or talents, it depends on pure luck. Why not treat citizenship as a membership? Why would it be wrong to receive talent and people who will contribute to the country? “, added Kalin, who, as Jutarnji List writes, was already nicknamed the” Passport Lord. ”

One of the world’s largest markets for citizenship is Hong Kong, which is not surprising when one considers the population of China.

There are more and more of them with two passports, some even three, because, as MJ, a nationality trader in the country, told the BBC, “they don’t feel safe in China and want access to Europe and open a bank account there, buy a property or start a business .

In fact, a large part of Asia, Russia and the Middle East wants citizenship of some European countries so that they can move and operate freely in all EU Member States.

Citizenship prices

It is therefore not surprising that citizenship has become a competitive world market, and for many small or island nations, such as those in the Caribbean, the cost of their passport is approximately $ 150,000.

Montenegro charges its citizenship from € 350,000, € 250,000 needs to be invested in the country’s development program, while a citizenship application costs an additional € 100,000.

Anyone who wants Portuguese, Spanish or Hungarian citizenship has to buy real estate or government bonds, which will cost him 350,000 euros in Portugal, or about 500,000 euros in Spain.

Some € 500,000 is to be spent on Bulgarian citizenship as well, while Maltese costs nearly one million.

Malta’s citizenship alone costs € 650,000, but it is also necessary to have a property worth at least € 350,000 for a full five years.

In the case of a family, citizenship costs an extra 25,000 euros for a spouse, and for unmarried children between 18 and 25 years of age, parents who depend on a person applying for Maltese citizenship have to pay another 50,000 euros per person, Morning said.

Cyprus, on the other hand, is constantly changing the prices of its citizenship. The country itself introduced the sale of passports in 2012 when it was on the verge of bankruptcy, and distributed citizenship under the accelerated procedure for a direct investment of ten million euros.

A year later, the island nation was embroiled in a major corruption scandal, and its banks seized foreign (mostly Russian) money.

As this meant even deeper financial problems for Cyprus, the government lowered the price of a Cyprus passport to three million euros worth of direct investment.

Later, the price dropped further, so today it is necessary to invest two million euros and to own a property of at least 500,000 euros in the Cypriot territory.

According to the BBC, the US sells its citizenship for a business investment of between $ 500,000 and $ 1 million, or € 455,000 and $ 910,000, and for the creation of at least ten jobs, Morning reports.

Jobs are also a requirement for an Austrian passport. More specifically, it requires a “significant direct investment” in a company that employs or continuously grows its exports, and makes an “exceptional contribution to the country”, such as developing new technologies or creating a large number of jobs.


Montenegro increases the minimum wage for 15 percent

The Parliament of Montenegro adopted today amendments to the Law on Compulsory Social Insurance, which reduces the contribution to health insurance at the expense of the employer by two percentage points from 4.3 percent to 2.3 percent of gross earnings.

The decision of the Government to increase the minimum wage to 222 euros and to reduce health insurance contributions at the expense of employers was assessed by MPs as good measure but not sufficient to improve the living standards of the population and suppress the gray economy.

“Considering the overall macroeconomic and social context, the government estimated that the optimal solution was to increase the minimum wage to 222 euros while reducing the employer’s health insurance contribution by two percentage points from 4.3 percent to 2.3 percent of gross earnings, hereby raising the share of the minimum wage in the average wage in Montenegro to 43 percent (up from the current share of 38 percent), finance Minister Darko Radunovic said earlier.”


Payment of guaranteed deposits for Atlas Bank will start tomorrow, 24.04.2019.

Payment of guaranteed deposits will start tomorrow, 24.04.2019. as of 10 am through the Crnogorska komercijalna bank, Hipotekarna bank, NLB Bank and Societe Generale Bank of Montenegro, the Deposit Protection Fund announced.

“With the maximum efforts of the Fund, we have ensured that the payment of guaranteed deposits for 90,015 depositors, who have a guaranteed deposit with Atlas Bank, will start tomorrow, April 24, at 10 o’clock in the branches of the banks we have selected as payer banks in a special procedure. These are: Crnogorska komercijalna Banka ad Podgorica, Hipotekarna Banka a.d. Podgorica, NLB Bank a.d. Podgorica and Societe Generale Montenegro Bank a.d. Podgorica.

Banks have designated 75 payout points in almost whole territory of Montenegro, so depositors will be able to take on a guaranteed deposit of their choice. Total deposits with Atlas Bank amount to € 186,435,113.42, ”said FZD Director Predrag Markovic. As he added, 93,688 depositors registered in the business records of Atlas Bank, 90,015 of them are entitled to payment of the guaranteed deposit in the total amount of 89,592,085.36.

For 85,910 physical persons deposits amount to € 77,332,406.12, while 4,105 legal entities have € 12,259,679.23.

3,260 depositors have higher liabilities than deposits. 413 depositors with a total amount of € 5,338,178.90 were excluded from the payment entitlement.



Payment of guaranteed deposits for IBM Bank will start tomorrow, 28.01.2019.

The Deposit Protection Fund (FZD) will start tomorrow 10 am the payment of guaranteed deposits to depositors of Invest Bank Montenegro (IBM).

The depositors of that financial institution, which has been bankrupt since January 4, will raise their money through Societe Generale, Hipotekarna and NLB. The Deposit Protection Fund is obliged to pay EUR 22.58 million to 2,730 depositors, of whom 2,340 are physical persons.

“Depositors need to come with IDs at the counter and, upon identification, can withdraw their guaranteed deposit in cash, leave it at that bank or transfer it to another bank. When it comes to legal entities, they will only be able to transfer money to the bank accounts abroad, “said the Director of the Deposit Protection Fund Predrag Markovic.

In an interview with Nova M, he said that they had completed a full scan of the situation with the banks, which took over the responsibility of the payment.

“This is a very stressful situation, it is the first time in Montenegro. I think that the banks have shown seriousness and business acumen in the previous period and in the best way have approached the organization of payment points, “Markovic pointed out.

Let us remind you that Societe Generals Bank of Montenegro will pay deposits at branches in Moskovska Street, Delta City and Independence Square in Podgorica.

Hipotekarna Bank will make payments to IBM depositors through its branches in St. Peter Cetinjski boulevard and Josip Broz Tito branch.

NLB Bank will pay depositors in five branches. For legal entities in the branch office in Ivan Crnojevic Boulevard, and for citizens in the boulevards of St. Peter Cetinjski and Per Cetković, Drpe Mandić Street bb, Gintaš and in the City Quarter.