Serbia Kragujevac FAS automotive serbian industry

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Republic of Serbia - Working class goes to heaven
Photos: Marika Puicher
The car industry has been going through a crisis throughout the world and carmakers have been forced to create new car models, as well to adopt new marketing and production strategies. Fiat, like many other European multinational companies, has delocalized part of its production in Eastern Europe causing significant regional macroeconomic and social changes. Serbia, in particular, is becoming one of the most favourite destinations for delocation to the point that, for example, more than 400 Italian companies are currently operating in Serbia. One of the most significant examples is Fiat. FAS (Fiat Automobili Serbia) in the free zone Kragujeva is the main joint venture of the last few years. The Zastava Automobili plant, which before the Serbian-Bosniac conflict had 13,500 employees, was almost razed to the round during the Nato bombing in 1999. Fiat's takeover of Zastava, with its 3000 workers, and the progressive investments of other companies in Kragujevac - such as Banca Intesa, Unicredit and Fondiaria Assicurazioni which have opened Serbian branches - have been welcomed by Kragujevac population as an opportunity for rebirth. Although the contrast between wealth and poverty continues to be evident in Kragujevac and the unemployment rate is still quite high, Kragujevac strives for a capitalistic economy hoping for an economic miracle, similar to the one that occurred in Italy, particularly Turin, in the 1950s and 1960s.
Serbia Kragujevac FAS automotive serbian industry
International photojournalism