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The Digital Lands of Serbia: A Buzz Interview with Nenad Vukcevic of Vukcevic Law

The Digital Lands of Serbia: A Buzz Interview with Nenad Vukcevic of Vukcevic Law

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Serbia’s real estate sector is undergoing some foundational shifts, according to Vukcevic Law Managing Partner Nenad Vukcevic, with numerous changes to the property and construction laws, led by a shift towards mandatory electronic cadaster subscriptions heralding a new digital era for legal processes in the country.

“The most significant change is the modification of the real estate cadaster subscription system,” Vukcevic begins. “As of November 4, 2023, individuals can no longer submit their documents directly; instead, they must go through a professional lawyer registered with the authority. This move aims to professionalize the submission process, ensuring accuracy and reducing errors,” he explains. Moreover, he reports that this is a “brand-new approach for Serbia, to have everything done exclusively in electronic forms, which at the same time marks a significant shift towards digitalization in our legal processes.”

Focusing on how the change has impacted the legal professional community and the citizens at large, Vukcevic shares that “for lawyers, this has been a positive development. It has significantly increased our workload, but in a good way – it elevates our role in the real estate sector and is beneficial for our profession.” On the flip side, he reports that “it still takes time for citizens to adapt to these new requirements. They are used to directly dealing with the cadaster, so this intermediary step requires a shift in mindset and practice, which might, in turn, lead to a longer adjustment period.”

Additionally, Vukcevic reports that the fee for converting the right of use into ownership has been abolished in the Republic of Serbia. “Indeed, one of the pivotal changes is the abolition of the conversion of the right of use in favor of ownership with a fee, meaning that citizens no longer need to pay a fee to the state for converting the use of land into ownership. This change has streamlined the process for land development and construction, encouraging more investment in the sector, particularly in residential projects,” Vukcevic explains. However, despite the challenges, he reports that “the construction industry in Serbia is burgeoning, with significant capital being invested in new developments.”

Moreover, Vukcevic reports that, in recent years, “efforts have been made to improve Serbian national infrastructure, including highways, railways, residential, and commercial areas, which contributes significantly to our GDP and continues to attract foreign direct investments,” he explains. “Interestingly, despite expectations of a price drop due to these developments, real estate prices have remained stable – of course, this stability only further provides an attractive environment for investment and development.”

Finally, looking ahead and considering all of these changes and recent developments, Vukcevic shares that he feels the future will be promising. “With the government taking decisive steps to modernize and professionalize the real estate sector, we anticipate more robust growth and development across residential and commercial real estate,” he says. “These legal changes, while requiring adjustments from all parties involved, are set to enhance efficiency, transparency, and trust in the real estate market, laying a solid foundation for future growth.”

Serbia Knowledge Partner

SOG in cooperation with Kinstellar is a full-service business law firm in Serbia that provides foreign and domestic clients with premium-quality legal advice and assistance across a wide range of key areas of corporate law. The firm was founded in 2015 by a group of seasoned, internationally-trained lawyers. SOG has developed a distinctively dynamic culture, bringing together top talent, fostering entrepreneurship, and maintaining exceptional relationships with its clients.

SOG has achieved consistent growth in the volume of its business, accompanied by an exponential increase in the number of hired associate lawyers and the firm’s network of business contacts. SOG has a robust client base of multinationals, investment and private equity firms, and financial institutions. Clients praise SOG for being commercially minded, very responsive and knowledgeable.

Establishing permanent cooperation with Kinstellar is part of realising SOG's long-term development strategy to be the leading provider of legal services in the Western Balkans market.

Firm's website: https://www.kinstellar.com/

 

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