Milena Tošić, Director of Support Services at Tigar Tyres d.o.o. Pirot

Latest Technology – Guarantee Of Future Development

The new Mixing Unit represents the successful culmination of our three-year investment project with a value of €215 million, which enables us to have a production capacity of 12 million tyres annually and provides for further growth of another two million to be reached in the future

The value of the building and the equipment in the new Mixing Unit is €40 million. The latest generation equipment for the production of compounds will enable us to apply new technologies in the production of tyres, based on silica-materials that add a new quality to tyres’ performances.

Considering that Tigar Tyres is an export-orientated company (with more than 90% of production intended for export), the aforementioned increase in the production capacity will have a direct impact on increasing export totals from €220 million prior to investment to €360 million after investment.

Could you describe the impact of Europe’s wavering auto industry market on your long-term business plans?

– Tigar Tyres’ factory in Pirot is the only factory in the Michelin Group located in Europe that produce pneumatics of the third line (budget tyres) branded with Tigar, Riken Kormoran and other brands. The market of budget line tyres is growing fast, especially in Central and Eastern Europe, Russia and other former Soviet countries.

Thanks to the capacities of the new Mixing Unit and new tyre factory, we are able to respond promptly and efficiently to the growing demands of the market.

The innovative approach of our expert team, which is dedicated to improving our offer on the market, is extremely important. Our portfolio contains 2,000 different items, eight brands, tyre types for different meteorological and land conditions (summer and winter tyres, SUV tyres etc.).

We are especially proud of the flexibility of our production, as well as the quality of accompanying technical services and the services of professional support departments, which enable us to ensure the very fast delivery of tyres in a vast assortment, as per the requests of our buyers. All in all, this is how we forge and strengthen long-term partnership relations.

What do you see as the main advantage of working in a Free Zone, and in which aspects of the general business environment in Serbia do you expect to see further improvements?

– Doing business in a free zone regime has its advantages, especially for export-orientated companies like Tigar Tyres. The relevant law provides significant custom incentives to free zone users and allows special treatment of VAT for goods intended for export. It is very important for Tigar Tyres to deliver goods quickly and this custom system enables us to do that, i.e. the so-called “in house customs” organised by the Free Zone enables us to handle this aspect in a qualitative and effective way.

Thanks to the capacities of the new Mixing Unit and new tyre factory, we are able to respond promptly and efficiently to the growing demands of the market

This is only one example of how the business environment in Serbia can have a positive influence on doing business in Serbia. The level of engagement of both central and local administration in simplifying administrative procedures is worthy of all praise, especially in respect to the procedure for obtaining construction permits.

Could you elaborate on how much Tigar Tyres invests in environmental protection and other CSR areas?

– Tigar Tyres organises and conducts all of its business in accordance with the legal regulations of the Republic of Serbia. This refers to the treatment of various types of non-hazardous waste, such as packaging waste, to hazardous waste, such as used oils etc. During the preparations for construction of the new factory and new Mixing Unit, we carried out the full remediation of the entire location.

Furthermore, in order to protect the watercourse of the River Nišava, Tigar Tyres installed 10 separators for oil and fats that have the function of preventing possible leakages of polluted materials into the sewage system. Tigar Tyres regularly controls its emissions of pollutants into the atmosphere and, in cooperation with GZZJ Pirot, monitors the parameters of air in the industrial zone constantly. These parameters remained far below the permitted values.

One of the most important environmental aspects of tyre production worldwide is taking care of tyres after their working life has expired. Each year Tigar Tyres pays over a million euros for the eco-tax, in order to ensure these tyres are properly collected and recycled. We simultaneously promote the idea of introducing the so-called “PR model” (extended responsibility of the producer), which would ensure a more effective and transparent way of disposing of old tyres than the current situation created by the enforced tax system.

Apart from the natural environment, we also direct our CSR activities towards an additional three priority areas – traffic security, health and education. Regarding these areas, together with the local community, we are funding significant projects (cycling tracks in Pirot, installing traffic lights at dangerous crossroads, providing schools and medical institutions with equipment, vehicles etc.

This year we are giving special importance to the promotion of volunteering through the engagement of our employees in various humanitarian activities, based on an awareness that it is only through mutual action that we may progress and act in line with our CRS motto “Growing together”.

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