Short films and images on the Swiss involvement in different sectors and regions in Bosnia and Herzegovina

A Place where Success Stories are Women

This video shows how cooperation between local community and diaspora, with support of the Government of Switzerland, led to opening a textile company and providing jobs for ten previously unemployed women, most of whom are the only wage earners in their families.  

The Municipality of Nevesinje, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, has current population of around 14,000, while some 7,000 of its citizens live abroad. Nataša Čalić is one of them. Back in the nineties of the 20th century, she had been an employee of a local textile company, before losing her job due to closing down. She left her hometown for neighbouring Montenegro, and 25 years later returned to start up her own textile company, employing some of her previous colleagues. The initiative was supported by Nataša herself, the Government of Switzerland, and the Municipality of Nevesinje. The latter also provided the workspace, old and unused military barracks. The newly established company produces custom-made work- and sportswear for buyers in the country and abroad.  

Support by the Government of Switzerland came as part of Migration for Development Project, a joint initiative by the Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees, the Government of Switzerland, and United Nations Development Programme. The project was implemented in the period 2013 – 2015, with the aim, among others, to strengthen the capacities of local governments to boost economic ties and cooperation with diaspora. It encompassed ten local governments, resulting in seventy jobs created or maintained, and additional annual revenue for agricultural producers of 1.3 million BAM (app. 760,000 USD).

Water is life

Water is life infographics © FDFA

Supported by the Government of Switzerland through the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the Municipality of Prijedor rehabilitated and extended the water supply system providing people with reliable and safe drinking water. A total of 16.4 million CHF (12.4 million by SECO) was invested to improve water infrastructure, and to enhance the functioning of the water utility. Nowadays 74'000 people in 29 settlements in and around Prijedor have drinking water without interruption.

The short movie “Water is life – the Swiss Engagement in Bosnia and Herzegovina” (2015) explains why clean water is such a critical part of lives of returnees, farmers, entrepreneurs and other population of Prijedor municipality. The movie is available in four languages.

B/S/H here  / English here  / Deutsch here  / Français here

The movie “Water is life” was showed within the annual Conference of Swiss cooperation in Eastern Europe 2015 in Biel, Switzerland. In accordance with this year's conference theme “The Western Balkans in transition – strong municipalities for sustainable development”, Director of Cooperation at the Embassy of Switzerland in BiH Joseph Guntern Director presented the achieved results and lessons learned through the Prijedor Water Supply Project and Governance Project in Water and Environmental Development (GOV-WADE). Both projects were implemented in the period from 2008 to 2012 in the northwestern part of BiH.

For more information on SECO programmes visit Economic Cooperation and Development and Transition Aid

To know more about the Swiss Cooperation with Eastern Europe visit Jahreskonferenz der Ostzusammenarbeit 2015

First Practical Project of the Innovation School Sprungbrett

Innovation School Sprungbrett practice project © EDA
Innovation School Sprungbrett practice project © FDFA

From 8 – 14 November 2015 Bihac (BiH) hosted the first practical project of the Bern University of Applied Sciences.

The concept of the Innovation School Sprungbrett is presented in the short movie Towards a Sustainable Forest and Wood Industry (please click the link).

To find out more about the project: Innovation School Sprungbrett – Austausch, Anwendung und Verbreitung von Wissen

Project partner: Bern University of Applied Sciences