- U.S.- Montenegro Relations
- Embassy Fact Sheets
The U.S. Embassy in Podgorica runs a wide range of programs. Our over two-hundred staff members work every day to broaden and deepen the relationship between the United States and Montenegro. Some highlights of our work over the past 15 years include:
- Since the U.S. Embassy began consular operations in July 2009, we have issued more than 50,000 visas to Montenegrin applicants for the purposes of tourism, education, business, and more.
- In fiscal year 2019, the Consular section issued 6,935 visas, ten times more than in 2009, when we first started issuing visas.
Economic and Commercial Relations
- More than 50 American companies operate in Montenegro and the U.S. interest in doing business in Montenegro is constantly on the rise, especially after Montenegro joined NATO in 2017.
- The top six U.S. investors have invested over €300 million in Montenegro since its independence. An additional €300 million of investment is in the pipeline from U.S. companies operating in the tourism, telecommunications, and energy sectors.
- Our three American Corners in Montenegro, located in Podgorica, Cetinje, and Pljevlja, provide an invaluable platform for cultural and educational exchange. Our programs, which include English language conversation clubs, capacity building workshops for aspiring entrepreneurs, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) trainings for youth, are designed to advance mutual understanding between the people of our two countries.
- Our EducationUSA Center, housed in the American Corner in Podgorica, offers guidance to all those who would like to pursue studies in the United States. Over 100 Montenegrin students study annually in the United States.
- Over the past 15 years, more than 650 Montenegrins participate in our educational and professional exchanges, including the FLEX high school exchange program, the UGRAD university exchange program, the Fulbright Program, the Hubert Humphrey Fellowship, and the International Visitor Leadership Program.
- Every year, we bring Americans to Montenegro through the Fulbright Program to support English language learning and academic exchange.
- The Embassy has supported hundreds of projects to professionalize media, improve media literacy skills, and strengthen civil society, with a focus on increasing support for diversity and inclusion.
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement - Justice Program
- Helped Montenegro achieve NATO membership through the adoption of dozens of new or amended constitutional articles, laws, and regulations, and through the creation of key institutions, including the Special Police, the Special Prosecution, the Agency for Prevention of Corruption, and the Center for Training of the Judiciary and State Prosecution.
- In the past eight years, provided $12 million in training for over 4,500 Montenegrin judges, prosecutors, and other criminal justice sector officials; equipment to justice sector institutions; and grants to local NGOs to promote rule of law initiatives.
- Assisted the Center for Training in the Judiciary and State Prosecution with improving the quality of its training programs and strengthening its capacities.
- Assisted with improvement of working conditions and IT infrastructure in many Montenegrin courts and prosecution offices.
Export Control and Border Security Program (EXBS)
- EXBS has provided more than $ 6 million in assistance to Montenegro. EXBS is assisting Montenegro in bolstering its strategic trade control system that meets international standards, and continues to assist in strengthening the country’s border security and customs enforcement efforts.
- Since 2006, more than 1,000 Montenegrin officials have attended EXBS-sponsored events.
International Criminal Investigative Training and Assistance Program (ICITAP)
- The ICITAP Program connects U.S. law-enforcement resources to Montenegrin counterparts via training, equipment, and advisory assistance.
- As part of the U.S. Department of Justice, ICITAP draws on law-enforcement expertise from the Federal level and from police partner agencies throughout the United States.
- ICITAP is currently working with the National Police Directorate and Ministry of Interior on equipping the National Forensics Center with a state of the art information management system and will next turn to a multi-year project to transform information management systems throughout the Police Directorate.
- ICITAP and the George C. Marshall Center in Germany provide advisory assistance to Montenegro as it works to develop a National Strategy Against Transnational Organized Crime and ensure that Montenegro addresses organized crime and corruption as part of the EU integration process.
Office of Defense Cooperation (ODC)
- The Foreign Military Financing (FMF) Program has provided the Montenegrin Armed Forces with funds to upgrade equipment within their military, including approximately $5 million for communication equipment.
- The United States European Command’s (EUCOM) Humanitarian Assistance Program began in Montenegro in 2008. To date, over $10 million has been or will be used to fund over 60 different projects. The United States has donated fire trucks, firefighting equipment, and other emergency vehicles to municipalities throughout Montenegro. In addition, funding was used to renovate government infrastructure such as the Hospital in Risan, the Ivan Vusovic School in Niksic, and to build a Small Group Home in Bijelo Polje, among other projects.
- Since the beginning of the COVID pandemic, with additional emergency funding, Montenegro received valuable health related equipment: 18 equipment monitors, 12 Electrocardiogram (ECG) Diagnosis Systems, three Mobile Ultrasounds, and one Infusion pump with infusion sets. These devices were donated to the Clinical Center of Montenegro, as well as hospitals in Bar, Bijelo Polje, Kotor, Berane, Plejvlja, Niksic and Cetinje. The total value of the equipment donated by EUCOM during the pandemic is $258,000 with an additional $453,000 planned.
- Under the International Military Education and Training (IMET) program, Montenegro has received over $6.7 million in funding. With this financing, they have sent approximately 200 students to military courses in the United States for officer and non-commissioned officer (NCO) education. Basic Officer Leader Course (BOLC) and Captain’s Career Course (CCC) graduates are historically in commanding positions in their respective platoons and companies, using the skills they learned while in training in the United States. Graduates of IMET courses have served in the most senior positions in the entire Armed Forces including the Deputy Chief of Defense, Chief of the Navy, Chief of the Air Force, and Sergeant Major of the Armed Forces. Additionally, through the George C. Marshall Center, Montenegro has sent multiple high level leaders across the Government of Montenegro and Armed Forces to security related classes, as well as through U.S. Service Academies as cadets, commissioned to serve in Montenegro as military officers. As of October 2021, there are two midshipmen at the United States Naval Academy, two active-duty graduates, an active duty graduate from West Point, and a cadet currently in education there.
- ODC oversees and facilitates the State Partnership Program (SPP) which was established in 2007. The program established a partnership between the state of Maine and the Montenegrin Armed Forces. It has significantly contributed to the improvement of the Montenegrin Army capabilities and its interoperability with other NATO countries across a wide spectrum of efforts. For upcoming Cyber and Communications upgrades through an approximately eight-million-dollar grant, Maine SPP cyber experts helped compile the needs and equipment list, will assist in all preparations for the installation, and be present for the integration. Similarly for an approximately 16 million dollar grant, they facilitated the equipment list, design and execution of deployable communications capabilities, including NATO interoperable radios for newly acquired Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTV).
- For interoperability with Land forces, SPP concentrates on battalion staff professional development and staff planning for successful national readiness exercises, as well as company level deployments for NATO exercises and real-word missions. Maine engineers are also involved in Joint Engineering exercise related construction projects, such as a bivouac area improvement for the Exercise TROJAN FOOTPRINT 22. The 101st Civil Engineer Squadron from Maine Air National Guard designed, created the cost estimates and the project schedule. They further support logistics of the JLTV acquisition in terms of expert exchanges for long term maintenance of and training on JLTVs.
- Through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) Program, the ODC office coordinated the purchase of Oshkosh Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTV) and equipment worth approximately $36.1 million, with the first 20 having arrived in Fall 2020. The largest ever FMS sale to Montenegro and the first European fielding of the vehicle; this was a landmark case and greatly increases Montenegro’s future interoperability potential with U.S. and NATO forces as other regional partners take on the vehicles.