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Bosnia and Herzegovina - annual report 2017

Published: June 1, 2018
Group shot of the “Introduction to German law” block seminar in Zenica
Group shot of the “Introduction to German law” block seminar in Zenica

Legal Policy Situation

Bosnia and Herzegovina, whose Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU entered into force on 1 June 2015, and which applied for accession to the EU in 2016, was late in starting with the transformation of its legal system as a result of the war. Thus, the implementation of the rule-of-law standards of a constitutional state is particularly urgent here. As the law in Bosnia and Herzegovina is traditionally orientated towards the Continental European model, consultation provided by Germany is particularly meaningful and sustainable. Difficulties arise in the project work in Bosnia and Herzegovina due to the distinctly federal system. The entities of that only work together to a limited extent, which also leads to a fragmentation of the law. In addition, domestic political conflicts also result in a standstill of the reforms. In the light of this situation, the IRZ is currently focussing its activities in Bosnia and Herzegovina in particular on the basic and further training of lawyers.

Overall Concept

The IRZ supports basic and further training in the field of civil and commercial law at faculties of law and at both training centres for judges and public prosecutors. Furthermore, the foundation is involved in the field of constitutional law. Finally, the IRZ has issued a number of legal publications in the local language in recent years, which also target readers in other countries of the region. The partners in the country include, in particular, the Constitutional Court on the state level, the Centres for judicial and prosecutorial training of both entities and the faculties of law at the universities of Mostar, Sarajevo and Zenica, as well as the legal aid organisation Vaša Prava. In the course of its activities, the IRZ also creates opportunities deliberately for members of different population groups to meet one another, in order to counteract ethnic tensions.

Foci of Activity 2017

Constitutional Law/Human Rights and their Enforceability

Civil and Commercial Law

Public Law

Administration of Justice

Basic and Further Training


The IRZ will be continuing and intensifying its project work in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2018 in close cooperation with its partners. The focus here will be on the continuation of the cooperation with the Constitutional Court at the state level and the two training centres for judges and Public Prosecutors.