USAID Serbia Competitive Systems Strengthening (CSS)

Assembly line workers in Serbia sort fruit

Cardno is increasing Serbia’s competitiveness, generating export-led growth, and promoting greater integration with European and global markets.

Cardno is helping develop the value chain and export opportunities in Serbia’s food processing sector through our strategic implementation of USAID’s CSS program. 

Our team recognises that to succeed in global markets, firms must be able to deliver a unique or higher-quality product more efficiently than their competitors. However, firm-level competitiveness is inextricably tied to industry and sector competitiveness. Effective and sustainable gains can only be achieved through changes that support all levels of the value chain, including suppliers, producers, processors and buyers, as well as support services and enabling environments. 

Through the CSS activity, Cardno is seeking to leverage relationships and capacities among value chain participants to improve cooperation and coordination. This in turn will lead to the development of better products and services.  

Workers in processing plant in Serbia

Building on the foundation of USAID BEP and USAID CSS activity, Cardno will broker linkages among different market ecosystem actors, such as private and public sectors, consumers and markets.  

Our team will facilitate public-private dialogue (PPD) in the area of agribusiness and engage Serbia’s growing IT sector. PPD processes ensure that all project activities are demand-driven and have support from key stakeholders, thus contributing to economic impact and sustainability. 

By improving both formal and informal linkages along the value chain, we can reduce transaction costs, create economies of scale, and encourage the sharing of skills and resources to enhance product quality through common production standards.  

While initially focusing on the food processing sector, we expect this CSS activity will create a model that can eventually be applied to other sectors.