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The Buzz in Bosnia & Herzegovina: Interview with Arela Jusufbasic-Goloman, Partner of Tkalcic-Dulic, Prebanic, Rizvic & Jusufbasic-Goloman

The Buzz in Bosnia & Herzegovina: Interview with Arela Jusufbasic-Goloman, Partner of Tkalcic-Dulic, Prebanic, Rizvic & Jusufbasic-Goloman

Bosnia and Herzegovina
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Tkalcic-Dulic, Prebanic, Rizvic & Jusufbasic-Goloman Partner, Arela Jusufbasic-Goloman, says that no significant laws or regulations have been passed in Bosnia & Herzegovina recently that could influence the work of lawyers or the business sector, although they are much needed.

“We are still having problems with the political situation," explains Jusufbasic-Goloman, "which hinders the adoption of new regulations that could allow easier business procedures for companies and foreign investors. We don’t have an elementary majority in the Federation, the work of the parliament is blocked – only the most necessary rules are passed and adopted – and the political parties are only concerned with pre-election activities, since next year we have elections in Bosnia-Herzegovina."

Jusufbasic-Goloman sas that it is unfortunate that the political class considers these pre-election activities so important right now, and not the fate of the business sector, or the passing of new laws that could encourage activity in it. “They are just concerned with how to promote their political parties and the groups that they represent, instead of focusing on the countries interests," she says. "This would be even more important if we consider that there is a lot of interest from foreign investors in Bosnia’s energy sector, particularly in the construction of hydropower plants and thermal power stations."

According to Jusufbasic-Goloman, the main practical problem is that Bosnia & Herzegovina is divided into two entities and one district, with one of the entities divided into 10 cantons, and each of these administration areas has its own governments, ministers, and other officials. “It is very difficult for a foreigner to understand this huge administrative system, and know all the different rules and regulations in such a divided country. There are some administration areas that do not even recognize one another, or are not harmonized with each other,” she says, adding that this huge administrative system also produces slow administrative procedures with high costs when it comes to the issuance of permits, construction forms, investment papers, and so on.

According to Jusufbasic-Goloman, clients often ask when the country will solve certain problems, and when it will adopt certain rules to help their activities in Bosnia. “We can see that they are concerned about doing business in Bosnia because of the above-mentioned political situation," she sighs. "We have also noticed that this year the number of foreign investments was a bit lower than the last year. We definitely need further regulations and more relevant rules to make it easier for foreign investors to decide how and when to invest in a particular area.”

Bosnia and Herzegovina Knowledge Partner

Maric & Co Law Firm stands on the shoulders of more than 70 years of experience and practice in the legal market of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Having in mind that it is difficult to find a small country with such a complicated political and legal system, we are fully aware that quality advice requires deep understanding of different areas of law. In a country where legislation is created on state, entity and cantonal levels, without proper harmonization, and where the same regulation can be applied differently by two different courts, only domestic lawyers who are well-versed in local regulations and court practices, and who are highly specialized in their practice area, may actually help their client.

With this understanding, today, the firm Maric and Co is the largest law office in the country dealing exclusively with business law. This means that we provide wide expertise in resolving all issues that domestic and international investors encounter when setting up and operating businesses in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The scope of the office allows each of our attorneys to highly specialize in their fields, whilst the size of our team ensures delivery of premium advice and seamless service. Our firm seeks long-term partnerships with clients with the aim of providing the best and most complete solution to the client's legal needs. We are proud to say that our clients do not leave us.

We apply the same principles to our international affairs, aware of the fact that no foreign lawyer can have the same understanding of legal regulations of a country as a domestic lawyer. Therefore, our philosophy is not to open branches in countries where our clients do business, but to closely connect with top tier lawyers in those countries. Our law firm is one of the founding members of SEE Legal – a group of ten leading national law firms from 12 South East European countries. This network enables us to provide the best advice and representation in these countries. Additionally, as a result of our strong relationship with the majority of global law firms, we are able to provide law services anywhere in the world.

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