The National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia adopted the new Law on Tourism

On 14 March, 2019 the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia adopted the Law on Tourism („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 Law was adopted in other for regulations in this field to accompany the regulations of the European Union countries and other touristic developed countries in the region. The previous Law on Tourism which validity was abrogated by the Law regulated the field of tourism and catering. The new regulation in these fields are separated. The main objective of the newly adopted law is to reduce the shadow economy in tourism. The Law is also harmonized with the Law on Inspection Supervision („Official Gazette RS “no 36/2015, 44/2018 – other law and 95/2018) and the Law on General Administrative Procedure („Official Gazette RS “No 18/2016) and the Law on Consumer Protection („Official Gazette RS “No. 62/2014, 6/2016 – other Law). The Law is also harmonized with the Tourism Development Strategy of the Republic of Serbia 2016-2025 („Official Gazette RS no. 98/2016). The newly adopted law follows the Directive (EU) No. 2015/2302 of December 25, 2015, which satisfied the need for harmonization of the regulations if the Republic of the Republic of Serbia with said directive.

In order to achieve the main goal which is the reduction of the shadow economy the provisions on the registration of the business activities of certain entities are more precisely regulated. The accuracy for the rights, obligations and responsibilities of tourist organizations has been accomplished at all levels. The local authorities have been given more powers in terms of submitting an imitative for the proclamation of a tourist area. According to the Law the tourist area is a space, which due to its characteristics, values and priority for touristic purposes, requires a special organizational, usage and protection arrangement or the area envisaged for the construction of facilities of national interests.

The business activity by traveling agencies which is related to the organization of travel and related tourist arrangements is in line with the Directive (EU) No 2017/2302. The main postulate in this area is the protection of the rights of the consumer. Provisions about online sales of tourist arrangements and other services in tourism, as well as the provisions about the motor vehicle rental services are regulated in more detail in order to protect the consumers. The Law has the conditions that must be met in order to legally sell tourist arrangements. The Law also regulates the collection, storing, processing and using personal data. The Lar entrusted new and broader authorization of tourist inspectors.