IPMA International Project Management Association
22 January 2018 / 8:14

Projects and project management in Montenegro

Montenegro is a sovereign state in South-eastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the southwest and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast, Kosovo to the east, and Albania to the southeast. The word “Montenegro” could be translated into “Black Mountains”, some refer to it as “Black Forest”.

The history of Montenegro can be traced back to the Romans, who established the province of Dalmatia that forms what is nowadays called Montenegro. During the Middle Ages, several principalities were formed on the territory, but came under pressure from all directions, from the Byzantine Roman Empire, the Slavs, the Serbs, and later the Ottomans, who ruled large portions of the region between 1496 and 1878. A “Principality of Montenegro” existed between 1852 to 1910, later it was proclaimed kingdom by Nikola I. During WWI, Montenegro was occupied by Austria-Hungary and King Nikola fled the country. After the war, Montenegro became part of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, together with Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia. During WWII Yugoslavia was occupied by Italian and German forces, but Yugoslav Partisans liberated the territory in 1944 and formed the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) under the leadership of Josip Broz Tito. After the dissolution of SFRY in 1992, Montenegro remained part of a smaller Federal Republic of Yugoslavia along with Serbia, but declared independence in 2006.

The diversity of the geological base, landscape, climate, and soil, and the position of Montenegro on the Balkan Peninsula and Adriatic Sea, created the conditions for high biological diversity. With a GDP of approximately 10 Billion Euro, Montenegro´s economy is comparatively small, mainly service-based and in transition to a market economy. Main industries are steelmaking, aluminum, agricultural processing, consumer goods and tourism. Main export countries are the former partners of the SFRY.

World Bank and European Union are investing money in order to help the economy to prosper. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) performed already more than fifty projects with an accumulated budget of 526 Million Euros, for example building roads, wind farms or railway infrastructure. China shows also interest in Montenegro for example financing the construction of the Podgorica-Kolasin motorway section or the renewal of the Montenegrin ship fleet. The Bar-Boljare Project is the largest engineering and construction venture in Montenegro. It will contribute to balanced development of the North and the South of the country and the government expects that the highway will enable complete valorization of natural potentials, as well as more intensive economic development of all parts of Montenegro. Other infrastructure projects are performed along the coastline, for example developing the Port of Montenegro for the purpose of business, housing and tourism. Finally, in the field of renewable energy there are also many projects performed, for example hydropower plants, wind farms etc.

By the end of 2017, the Montenegrin Project Management Association (MPMA) was register with the government. It will soon join the IPMA Family and SE-Net, a network of project management associations in South-East Europe. The aim of MPMA is to help the profession to develop, e.g. through education and training, experience exchange for young professionals and practitioners in the field of project management. Through MPMA, the IPMA 4-Level-Certification Programme for Project, Programme and Portfolio Management will also be offered, in order to improve the project performance in all relevant sectors.


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Reinhard Wagner

Author of this post

Reinhard Wagner has been active for more than 30 years in the field of project- related leadership, in such diverse sectors as Air Defense, Automotive Engineering, and Machinery, as well as various not-for-profit organizations. As a Certified Projects Director (IPMA Level A), he has proven experience in managing projects, programmes and project portfolios in complex and dynamic contexts. He is also an IPMA Certified Programme and Portfolio Management Consultant, and as such supports senior executives in developing and improving their organizational competence in managing projects. For more than 15 years, he has been actively involved in the development of project, programme and portfolio management standards, for example as Convenor of the ISO 21500 “Guidance on Project Management” and the ISO 21503 “Guidance on Programme Management”. Reinhard Wagner is Past President of IPMA and Chairman of the Council, Honorary Chairman of GPM (the German Project Management Association), as well as Managing Director of Tiba Managementberatung GmbH.