Montenegro, Bilateral Investment Agreements and Taxation Treaties, Business Environment
Montenegro signed the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) in July 2007. The agreement has been signed by seven other countries (Albania, North Macedonia, Moldova, UNMIK/Kosovo, Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina). A free trade agreement with Turkey has been in force since March 2010. Montenegro had a free trade agreement with Russia, but the agreement is not currently in force, nor are the free trade agreements with Kazakhstan and Belarus, which have a customs union with Russia. In 2011 Montenegro signed a free trade agreement with Ukraine and with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries (Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein). Montenegro has not signed a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) with the United States. The United States restored Normal Trade Relations (Most-Favored Nation status) to Montenegro in December 2003. This status provides improved access to the U.S. market for goods exported from Montenegro. Montenegro has also been designated as a beneficiary developing country under the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program which expired on January 1, 2021. As a result, Montenegrin imports entering the United States that were eligible for duty free treatment under GSP up to December 31, 2020 (jewelry, ores, stones, and various agricultural products) are now subject to regular duties.
Bilateral taxation treaties
Montenegro does not have a double taxation treaty with the United States. On March 1, 2018, Montenegro’s Parliament approved the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) agreement between the governments of Montenegro and the United States. Implementation of FATCA will help the countries better track and report tax evasion. The country has signed 43 taxation treaties with various countries on income and property, which regulate double taxation. The treaties in force are with the following countries: Albania, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, India, Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, North Macedonia, Malaysia, Moldova, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates. Treaties with Spain and Qatar are pending.
Investment treaties seek to ensure a stable framework for investment and better use of economic resources. They define the conditions for investments, allowing free transfer of funds, the right of subrogation, compensation in the event of expropriation and settlement of disputes between investors and countries, including the settlement of disputes between the countries themselves.
Montenegro has 24 BITs in force and more than half have been concluded with the EU member states.
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