Montenegro’s ICT sector has been recognized as one of the most important areas for the country’s economic development. The sector has an overreaching influence on the national economy and global competitiveness since it supports all the other sectors of the economy. Montenegro is ranked in 57th place in the World Economic Forum’s last Global Competitiveness Report 2019 when it comes to ICT adoption. Electronic communications are well developed and competitive, with main providers being members of renowned international and regional telecommunications companies.
Montenegro’s ICT-related legislation is aligned with EU legislation. The Law on Electronic Government was adopted in January 2020 and seeks to improve the environment in which the public administration provides services to citizens and businesses. Key strategic documents in the sector include: (i) Digital Transformation Strategies of Montenegro 2022-2026, (ii) Cyber Security Strategy of Montenegro 2022-2026, and (iii) Program to Attract Digital Nomads in Montenegro until 2025.
The telecommunications sector in Montenegro is 100% privately owned, with an annual turnover of about €350 million. Investments in the last 3 years reached €250 million. Broadband penetration is close to 80% at the household level, while 4G coverage is 98% of populated areas. There are currently around 800 companies operating in the ICT sector in Montenegro, and that number has been growing rapidly as IT firms displaced by the war in Ukraine relocate throughout the region. As of July 2021, there were 34 registered electronic communications operators in Montenegro, of which three are operators of mobile telephony: Crnogorski Telekom (T-Com), One (formerly Telenor), and M-tel.
Many global players from the ICT sector are present on the Montenegrin market, e.g. Microsoft, Crnogorski Telekom (daughter company of Hrvatski Telekom and member of the Deutsche Telekom Group), Ericsson, Huawei, S&T, New Frontier Group (Saga), as well as important regional operators, such as Telekom Serbia, ComTrade and United Group.
Investments in the ICT sector, including cyber security and data protection, are expected to grow. The country’s innovation law is in place and provides a boost to the startup ecosystem, and when fully implemented companies can invest up to €100,000 of the capital gains taxes they are obligated to pay into a startup of their choosing in exchange for equity. U.S. technology and solutions firms are well positioned for the Montenegrin market, with opportunities in software development, hardware, digitalization and e-services, and ICT education. In December 2021, the government adopted the “Roadmap for the introduction of 5G mobile communication networks,” with an auction to allocate radio frequencies for the 5G network (including 700 MHz, 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz) planned for the end of 2022. In addition, a “5G Strategy” is also expected to be adopted by mid-to-late 2022.
Ministry of Public Administration
Maras Dukaj, Minister
81000 Podgorica, Rimski trg 45
Phone: +382 20 482 131;
Web site: https://www.gov.me/mju