Impressions and Business Environment

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Since Montenegro's independence from Serbia in 2006, a number of Americans have begun doing business in Montenegro. This chapter highlights their impressions of Montenegro and the business environment for American businesses seeking to do business in Montenegro.

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Narrator:
Since Montenegro’s independence from Serbia in 2006, a number of Americans have begun conducting business in Montenegro. Let’s take a moment and hear from some of these individuals who are on the forefront of developing strong business-to-business relations between the United States and Montenegro. We asked them about their impressions of Montenegro as well as the business environment in Montenegro.

Charles Dillon:
I fell in love with Montenegro the first moment I walked off the plane in Tivat, Montenegro. It is one of the most beautiful countries I have visited. Like many Americans I had a misperception about the Balkans. I thought “Milosevic” and I thought the “War” and I thought that the economic opportunities were not there, and I have learned over many, many, many, many trips and meeting many wonderful people in Montenegro and very sophisticated government officials as well as very sophisticated business leaders that Montenegro is a very pro-business environment. Besides its beautiful country and its warm hospitality, the opportunities and pro-business environment of Montenegro is certainly something that American business should be interested in and should take advantage of.

Robert Walker:
I was really impressed with their enthusiasm and excitement that they have about the opportunities that they saw for their country, and they realize that they need to be part of the global economy and that to help grow their economy and help develop their economy, create jobs, and even new industry, they need to reach out and we are delighted that Maryland can be the state that they look as they reach out to America to find those opportunities.

Thomas Luhrman:
The people of Montenegro are very friendly, very sincere. I felt very at home there. I felt very warmly welcomed. They do have a very good sense of humor. I enjoyed myself while I was in the presence of Mayor Mugosa, and his staff treated us very well.

Gorgen Abrami:
Actually we were looking for properties in Croatia in the beginning and once I got to Montenegro, out of accident, I was really stunned and amazed by the beauty of that country and since then we have been actually been working on improving everything. We have been engaged in a number of projects. The biggest one is Kotor. The work is in progress of course.

Narrator:
The gentleman you just heard from, Gorgen Abrami, is the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Owner of KMG Corporation, a Scandinavian funded real estate investment company in Montenegro, and a member of the U.S. – Montenegro Business Council. KMG Corporation is one of the largest real estate investment companies in Montenegro; and in cooperation with one of America’s premier international luxury resort and hotel chains, Capella Hotels and Resorts, is building the single largest European Union and American private business project in Montenegro – Kotor Hill Villages. Capella Hotels and Resorts has hotel and residential real estate currently under management or development in 14 countries and 4 continents.

Its location on top of Vrmac Hill overlooking the UNESCO-protected City and Bay of Kotor, and with Capella Hotels and Resorts international reputation of serving today’s top-tier travelers and residential property owners, this 5-star hotel and resort development will certainly become one of the most sought-after tourist destinations along the Mediterranean.

With construction expected to begin in late 2010, Kotor Hill Villages is expected to cost between 150 to 200 million dollars and will create hundreds of jobs for local workers. Once completed, over 300 people will be employed and the impact on the local economy and small businesses will be substantial.

The Bay of Kotor has been inhabited since antiquity, has some well preserved medieval towns, and is known thoughout history of being home to some of best trained seafarers in the world. Kotor has seen a steady increase in tourists and cruse lines attracted by both the natural beauty of the Gulf of Kotor and the old town of Kotor itself.

The Old Town has a vibrant nightlife, restaurants and cafes, and will soon be home to one of Montengro’s best casinos – the Win.