Central BiH Region Info

This page provides the Central BiH region information about:

Geography and topography
Geo strategic location
Natural resources
Human resources
A long industry tradition
Quality of life

Geography and topography

Central BiH region is natural, climatic, geographically, and economically consistent entirety which includes 16 mutually connected integrated municipalities, located in two cantons in Federation BiH (FBiH): Zenica-Doboj and Central Bosnia cantons (regarding administrative aspect), so that municipality (Teslić) is located in Republika Srpska).

The surface of the municipalities is significantly different. Two of them (Usora and Doboj Jug) are extremely small municipalities, and four municipalities (Zenica, Zavidovići, Travnik and Teslić) have a surface over 500 square km. Among the mentioned municipalities, Teslić is the biggest with surface of od 846 square km.

The whole region covers a surface of 5,295.91 square km, which represents 10.34% of total surface of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

2 = The Central Bosnia and Herzegovina (CBiH) region Back to the top

Geo strategic location

The geo-strategic position of the region is probably one of the most important development prospects for the strategic development of the region. In the context of European integration and international communications, we can conclude that this region has the best geo-strategic position in BiH. The part of the region that is located on the banks of the river Bosna is on the natural road which connects Central and Eastern Europe with the Adriatic and the Mediterranean seas. The region is relatively close to Sarajevo and not too far away from the Zagreb-Belgrade highway. The CBiH is integrated by main road M17, railroad corridor Šamac-Sarajevo-Ploče (double track between Zenica and Doboj) and the Zagreb-Belgrade highway, which is of international standard.

The relative proximity of Sarajevo ensures an appropriate air connection to all parts of the world. The shortest distance from CBiH borders to the Zagreb-Belgrade highway is 60 km, while to Sarajevo Airport it is 50 km and to Zagreb Airport it is 250 km. The longest distance from CBiH borders to the Zagreb-Belgrade highway is 270 km, while to Sarajevo Airport it is 175 km and to Zagreb Airport it is 440 km. The CBiH has an excellent location in the wider region of former Yugoslavia, which should be treated as a big development opportunity.

Along the Bosna river runs a modern railway connection (a double track between Zenica and Doboj) with Europe and the harbor Ploce on the Adriatic Sea. Combined with the future C5 corridor highway it could considerably increase the prospects of the region and offer a great number of development opportunities by integrating the region in the European road network in an adequate way. Back to the top

Plenty of natural resources

The natural resources of this region are agriculture land, forests, minerals and ores.

Agriculture land
Out of the CBiH territory (5,295.91 square km), total of 1,793.57 square km is the agriculture land (cultivable area, pasture, fish–pond, swamp and pond). Total cultivable area (arable land, gardens, orchards, vineyards and meadows) represents 82.90% of agriculture land.

Forests cover 57.95% or 3,063.78 square km of total Central BiH teritory. A typical forest is made of beech and oak in lower areas and of coniferous wood (pine, spruce and fir) in higher areas. Estimated wood pulp in the region of CBiH is 159 cubic meter per hectar.

Minerals and ores
The region also has significant resources of minerals and ores. The reserves of brown coal are estimated to 2,3 billions of tons. Lignite reserves are estimated to over 28,5 million of tons. Dolomite reserves are estimated to 7 million cubic meters. Marl reserves are estimated on surface of 300 ha and the depth has not been determined yet. Limestone reserves (rock aggregates) are estimated to 10.000.000 cubic meters. Iron ore reserves are estimated to over 100.000 tons. Other, in unvalued quantities, are: granite, quartz, rocks, rubble, crushed stone, marble, clay for bricks and refractory materials, plaster stone, diabase, cupper, and magnesium. CBiH Region, also dispose with unestimated resources of mineral and termal waters. According to the above, the Central BiH region disposes with significant reserves various mineral resources, which represents base for development in majority of municipalities of, the region especially if taking in consideration that they are not exploited sufficiently or (in some cases) they were not exploited at all, and which, with appropriate mechanisms of state economic policy, can become a basis for business activities.

The CBiH is considered to be rich in significant quantities of relatively clean rivers. Across the region flow rivers Vrbas and Bosna, with over 30 tributaries, which belong to the Black Sea confluence. Back to the top

Human resources

Active population
The active population represents a majority, 67%, of the total population, with slightly more females than males. In general, there is a more active population in villages than in towns.

Employment. The official rate of employed persons for the region is 54.57%. Regarding the level of education, the most qualified workers have graduated from secondary school.

Unemployment is seen as one of the most critical problems in the region and in BiH overall. The official rate of unemployment in the region is 45.43%, which is higher than the average rate in FBiH. Unemployment is an issue in all age groups, but is mostly prevalent in the 31–50 age category. Regarding the educational structure, the majority of unemployed have only secondary school Education. A considerable number of university graduates are also unemployed.

Net Wages
As mentioned earlier, the unemployment rate is very high and, in addition, the net wages of the employed population are very low, considerably below the average in FBiH.

Education infrastructure
In the Region exist three levels of education: primary, secondary, and university education which are predominantly owned by the state. Within the CBiH region there are 136 primary and 45 secondary schools. Secondary school education is not compulsory. University education has being developed. There is a recently established University in Zenica, consisting of:Faculty of Metallurgy and Materials, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Pedagogy, Pedagogical Academy, Islamic Academy of Pedagogic, Institute of Mechanical Engineering, Health Faculty, Artistic Faculty, and Institute of Metallurgy.

Also, there are two universities in Travnik: State owned Travnik University with: Faculty of Management and Tourism, Faculty of Economics’, Faculty of Economical Logistics, Faculty of Graphic, Faculty of Kinesiology, Faculty of Law’s, High Medical School and Faculty of Traffic. Private owned Apeiron University with:Faculty of Business Economy, Faculty of Business Informatics, Faculty of Law Science and Faculty of Medical Care. There are also 3 departments of Faculties from other regions: the Sarajevo Faculty of Economics’ - Zenica Department, the Sarajevo Faculty of Law’s - Zenica Department and the Mostar Faculty of Economics’ - Vitez Department. However, given the proximity of other BiH Universities (Sarajevo, Banja Luka, Tuzla, Mostar), the absence of higher education infrastructure on the regional level does not represent an obstacle to ensuring adequate university education for the region’s population. Back to the top

A long industry tradition

The region dispose with natural resources for favorable economic development (forests, minerals and also ores, waters and arable land).But, level of utilization of the resources is not sufficient, because different reasons. That open the possibility for inland and foreign investments in particular economic activities. Traditionally, the development of the region was based mainly in sectors of mining, metal and wood processing. Set forth sectors should still be the basis of strategic development, with required need to profile the companies in process industry in companies that enclose the whole process up to final product. Considering unused arable land, agriculture is one of sectors which offer opportunity for development, because advantageous climate, and land potentials respectable.

Mining and electrical power production still represent strategic resources for future development.

Other elements of physical infrastructure in CBiH Region: telecommunications (including hi-speed internet), water, electrical power and gas are available at most of locations anticipated for industrial/business zones.Back to the top

Quality of life

Hospitals and Health Resorts. The region has a hospital infrastructure.Considerable medical institutions in the region are Cantonal hospitals in Zenica and Travnik and hospitals in Nova Bila and Tešanj. Other municipalities have health stations. In Teslić and Olovo works well known spa’s. There are a few private medical practices in Zenica, Tešanj, Travnik, Kakanj and other towns. A health resort is located in Teslić - Banja Vrućica, with 824 beds for medical treatment, rehabilitation and recreation.

Sports and Recreation. In addition to the network of over 100 sports-recreational centres, the region has several ski centres (Babanovac, Zabrce, Vranica, Lisac, Smetovi, Tajan) in those parts of the region which are characterized by high mountains and offer suitable terrain. Back to the top

Links to other agencies/institutions


Foreign Investment Promotion Agency

Federal Ministry of Development, Entrepreneurship And Crafts

Zenica-Doboj Canton Central Bosnia Canton

Zenica-Doboj Canton

Central Bosnia

Republic Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Republic Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises

Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Chamber of Economy of Bosnia and Herzegovina Chamber of Economy of Federation BiH

Chamber of Economy of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Chamber of Economy of Federation BiH

Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Republic of Srpska

Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Republic of Srpska