The National Assembly adopted the Law on Central Population Register

On 14 March 2019, the National Assembly of the Republic of the Serbia adopted the Law on Central Population Register (the Law), published in the Official Gazette No. 17/2019 dated 14 March, 2019, effective eight days after publishing in the Official Gazette on 22 March, 2019. The application of the Law will start on September 1, 2020. On September 1, 2020 The Law on the Uniform Population Register („Official Gazette of SFRY “No. 24/86) and the Law on the Information System of Serbia („Official Gazette of the Republic of Serbia “No 12/96) cease to be valid.

The Law regulates the establishment and management of the Central Population Register of the Republic of Serbia (hereinafter: Central Register), the content of the registry and in which manner the Central Register is used. The Central Register is a unique electronically administered registry on the population of the Republic of Serbia. Apart from the citizens of the Republic of Serbia, population within the meaning of this Law also include persons whose data is stored in the Central Register who are not citizen of the Republic of Serbia, but they have certain rights or certain obligations in terms of special regulations.

In the Central Register data is processed on the following persons:

  • The Republic of Serbia citizens with permanent residence in the Republic of Serbia
  • The Republic of Serbia citizens with permanent residence outside the Republic of Serbia
  • Refugees on the territory of the Republic of Serbia
  • Foreigners with approved temporary residence or permanent stay in the Republic of Serbia
  • Asylum seekers, aliens who have been granted shelter or temporarily protection
  • Foreigners who do not have a permanent stay approved or temporarily residence permit in the Republic of Serbia but who have acquitted property or rights or rights and obligations for social and pension insurance or have a taxpayer status.

The Central Register is managed by the Ministry of State Administration and Local Self-Government (hereinafter: The Ministry) while technical support is provided by the Government Offices.

The Government should closely determine the manner of data registration, data exchange, access to data and data protection. It is left to the Government to resolve these issues more closely within six months from the data the Law entered into force.

The Minister of the Ministry of State Administration and Local Self-Government shall determine the structure of the department which will have the right to directly register data for the Central Register.

The Government office will provide technical support for establishing the Center Register, as well as support in storing the data, and implementing the measure for data protection and ensuring the data security. Processing of personal data will be done in accordance with the Law on Personal Data Protection.

The Central Register data will be obtained from the original register, which for the citizens of Republic of Serbia includes:

  • Records for citizen’s personal identification number
  • Register of birth, marriage and death records
  • Citizenships records
  • Records of temporary residence, place of residence and temporary residence abroad
  • Identity cards records
  • Travel documents records
  • Central Registry of Compulsory Social Insurance
  • Records of taxpayers

According to the provisions of the Law, the right to access the data from the Central Register will have natural persons to whom the data relates in accordance with the Law on Personal Data Protection, as well as well as an authorized person in conducting the duties in accordance with the Law.  At the request of a person who conducts statistical and scientific activities in the Central Register, in accordance with the Law, a special database with anonymized data will be created.

On the deceased citizens the data will be kept in the Central Register for 10 years, starting from the moment of their death.  On the persons whose data was annulled the data will be kept for 10 years in the Central Register, from the moment of annulment. For the persons who have permanently moved out of the Republic of Serbia the data will be kept for 10 years, from the moment of their departure.

The Ministry will be implementing the supervision of the Law conducted by the Administrative Inspection, while the supervision of the protection of personal data is conducted by the Commissioner for the Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection.

Unauthorized collection of the Central Register personal data is criminal offence.

The Ministry is obliged to provide technical requirements for transferring data to the Central Register by September 1, 2020. when the Law implementation starts.

The main purpose of the Law is to establish a unique, centralized and reliable database, which contains accurate and up-to-date information on the population of the Republic of Serbia, as well as enabling all authorized persons to perform their tasks within their competence in a reliable, economical and efficient way.  Creation of the Central Register is necessary in order to ensure efficient work of the state authorities and effective exercise of the rights of citizens before the authorities. The primary goal of the Law is for public administration to function as an efficient, reliable and secure system. As the Law proponent suggested the current problem is extensive and separated paperwork that impose working engagement of numerous human resources, which are essentially overburdened employees in the position of processing this documentation which is disproportionally extensive. The current number of administration employees is expressed as excessive but at the same time is insufficient.

By establishing the Central Register citizens are enable to function without the burden of collecting “necessary papers” which achieved the public policy goal of environmental protection, and all administrative procedures that require personal data confirmation are simplified. The Central Register creation also helps in achieving the general of public administration which is modernization and development of society and services.