Matic: Serbia to sign a memorandum with Alibaba by September

One of the biggest Chinese companies, Alibaba is very interested in entering the Serbian market, and by September, the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications will have signed a Memorandum of Cooperation in Tourism and Online Payments with the corporation – says Tatjana Matic, State Secretary in the Ministry of Trade.

She adds that the Memorandum would enable the presentation of Serbia as a tourist destination and the presentation of its tourist offer on Alibaba’s online travel platform called Fliggy, as well as the option of paying through the Alipay service for Chinese tourists in Serbia.

This model of cooperation, she points out, has already been established between Alibaba and Finland, which has led to an increase in the number of Chinese tourists in that country by 300%.

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There are also ongoing negotiations about Alibaba opening of distribution centre in Serbia, which depends on the construction of the Belgrade-Budapest railway.

For now, Alibaba’s is mainly interested in cooperation in the field of tourism, following Serbia abolishing visas for Chinese citizens.

“What is also important for Alibaba is the development of our infrastructure, primarily the deadlines by which the construction of the Belgrade-Budapest railway should be completed. The railway remains the key issue in terms of the negotiations on the opening of the distribution centre”, Matic explains.

“Alibaba is a big corporation and negotiating with them are time consuming. It is important that there is a great interest by Alibaba group in entering the Serbian market as they see a great opportunity in promoting Serbia as a tourist destination in China. They have also expressed interest in the regional tourist offer that Serbia has been developing with its neighbours”, Matic concluded.

(RTS, 24.04.2018)

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