S3 in Montenegro

Montenegro is the first non-EU country to have adopted Smart Specialisation Strategy (June 2019). This achievement was made thanks to strong political commitment at the national level and generous support of the Joint Research Centre (JRC). The Programme of Accession of Montenegro to the EU (2019-2020) provided for adoption of the Smart Specialisation Strategy (2019-2024) under Negotiation Chapter 25: Science and Research – policy framework, which is how Montenegro aligned its policy framework for research and innovation with the EU policy framework, even though it was not explicitly obliged to do so under accession negotiations. Intensive work on the project has been undertaken since May 2017, when close cooperation with the JRC was established.

In accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1059/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 May 2003 on the establishment of a common classification of territorial units for statistics (NUTS), Montenegro has been defined as a single NUTS region, as it covers an area of 13,812 km² with a population of 620,029 inhabitants. On this basis, when it comes to drafting the Smart Specialisation Strategy and knowledge-based economic development, the country is also treated as a single region, which should find its place among the total of 272 NUTS II regions within the EU.

The main goal of the S3 is to modernise and increase the competitiveness of the Montenegrin economy by concentrating available research, natural and economic resources on a limited number of priority areas. S3 should enable further intensive development of the subject priority areas, as well as the development of new sub-areas within them and development of new industries with strategic potential based on the synergistic interaction of the priority areas. The achievement of the main goal of the S3, i.e. modernised and competitive Montenegro, relies on three key strategic directions that represent the general long-term vision of the country’s development:

  • Healthy Montenegro
  • Sustainable Montenegro
  • Digitalised Montenegro