Our first fi-compass EaSI TA workshop in Serbia will be held next week on 14 March 2017 in Belgrade. Organised with close cooperation of AgroInvest (one of Serbia’s three non-bank microcredit institutions) this workshop is titled: 'Making it happen for small entrepreneurs – Microfinance!' and its objective centres on the explanation, organisation and promotion of microfinance opportunities for Serbia. Workshop timing coincides with crucial changes being considered in the country's microfinance regulatory framework.
Information and advice tailored to the Serbian context will be provided during three different workshop sessions to raise awareness about microfinance opportunities and the EaSI Programme, including both the Technical Assistance (TA) component, as well as the EaSI financial instruments. A morning session will first feature the Code of Good Conduct for Microcredit Provision, the EaSI Financial Instruments, and in particular the importance of the non-financial services, such as EaSI Technical Assistance. This will be followed by a presentation from Serbia's Ministry of Economy explaining the country's new microfinance regulatory framework proposals. An interactive workshop in the afternoon offers a unique occasion for different stakeholders in the sector to jointly reflect on the role and full potential of microfinance for Serbian micro-entrepreneurs.
Good practice examples from Europe will highlight the use of EaSI funds, as well as how microfinance regulatory frameworks can be used to help encourage greater use of microfinance on the ground.
Regulatory authorities and representatives of Serbia microfinance sector are the workshop's main audience. Practitioners involved in the lobbying process for implementing a microfinance regulation will also be present. These are expected to include expertise from Serbia's first EaSI financial instrument beneficiary - Erste Bank. Other participants present will include regional development banks, the Center for Advanced Economic Studies, Women Entrepreneurs, and the three Serbian non-bank microcredit institutions: Agroinvest; Opportunity Bank Serbia; and Microdevelopment Fund.