Your guide to being an expatriate in Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Bosnia and Herzegovina, officially known as the Federación de Bosnia y Herzegovina, is a country in Southeastern Europe. It is comprised of two entities: the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republika Srpska, both of which have their own parliaments and governments. Bosnia and Herzegovina declared independence from Yugoslavia in 1995, following the end of a brutal three-year war. Today, it is a member of the UN, CEFTA, and the Partnership for Peace with NATO. The country's capital, Sarajevo, is located in the central part of the country.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Expat destinations in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Demographics of Bosnia and Herzegovina:

Ethnic groups

Serbs: 30.5%

Croats: 15.1%

Others: 5.0%

Bosniaks: 49.5%


Others: 2.9%

Bosnian: 51.5%

Serbian: 30.5%

Croatian: 15.1%

Religion Overview

Bosnia and Herzegovina is renowned for its religious diversity. The majority of Bosniaks (Muslims) follow Sunni Islam. The Serbian Orthodox Church is the dominant religious group among Serbs, while Croats are primarily Catholic.

Major Religions


Bosnia and Herzegovina has a continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. Winters are particularly harsh in the east due to the proximity of the Balkan Mountains, while the coastal regions experience a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild winters.

Economy Overview

Since attaining independence, Bosnia and Herzegovina has struggled to build a thriving economy. It remains one of the poorest countries in Europe, and corruption and bureaucracy continue to hinder its progress. Key industries include agriculture, mining, and manufacturing.

Key Industries

  • Agriculture
  • Mining
  • Manufacturing

Major Companies

  • Bankhaus Lampe
  • Erste Bank
  • Intesa Sanpaolo Mostar

Culture and Language Overview

Bosnia and Herzegovina boasts a rich cultural heritage, shaped by its Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, and Yugoslav pasts. Its cuisine, music, and art are particularly noteworthy. The country has a significant number of UNESCO-recognized cultural heritage sites, including the Old Bridge in Mostar and the Stari Grad (Old Town) of Dubrovnik.

Cultural Highlights

  • Traditional Turkish coffee and sweet pastries
  • Gusle (traditional singers)

Geography and Landmarks Overview

Bosnia and Herzegovina is a mountainous country with the Dinaric Alps running through it. The Via Dinarica, a long-distance hiking trail spanning the Dinaric Alps from Slovenia to Albania, passes through Bosnia and Herzegovina, offering stunning views of the countryside.

Notable Landmarks

  • Stari Most
  • Blagaj Tekije
  • Medjugorje

National Holidays

  • New Year's Day (January 1)
  • Republika Srpska Day (January 9)
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina Day (March 1)
  • International Children's Day (June 1)
  • Velika Gospa Day (July 18)
  • Federation Day (November 25)

Political Stability

Bosnia and Herzegovina remains a politically complex country. Its heavily decentralized government structure and ongoing inter-ethnic tension contribute to instability. The country has struggled to accomplish key reforms, such as strengthening the rule of law and addressing corruption. Efforts are underway to streamline the administrational structure of the state, but progress is slow.

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