"We appeal to the Government of Montenegro to consider the Decision on the Public Call for the selection of an Agent for the registration of the .me domain and to ensure compliance with the contractual obligations with the doMEn company, which obliges it, first of all, to respect the rule of law," states the professional association of ICT companies ICT Cortex on the occasion of the announcement of the Public Call for the selection of an agent for the registration of the .ME domain.
This association, which represents over 40 domestic and foreign ICT companies, points out that a potential violation of contractual obligations by the Government of Montenegro represents a threat to the reputation of the Montenegrin business environment and sends a bad message to both existing and potential investors in the IT sector, especially considering the fact that among the founders of domain are one of the largest American IT companies and renowned leaders in the world of new technologies - Identity Digital, formerly Afilias, and GoDaddy.com LLC.
In addition to the fact that the doMEn company has built a recognized global brand, the influence of this company on the development of the ICT sector in Montenegro should not be forgotten. One of them can be seen precisely in the formation of the ICT cluster Cortex, whose company doMEn is one of the founders, and which focused its activities on strengthening the IT sector and creating the conditions for this industry to become the backbone of the future economic development of Montenegro.
Moreover, it can be said that the Montenegrin IT community made its first pioneering ventures precisely with the help of the doMEn company, and with the support, knowledge and experience of renowned American investors. Bearing in mind that one of the main problems of the IT industry is the lack of professional staff, the whole community is trying to contribute to the creation of new staff through its courses and extracurricular programs. The doMEn company has had an obvious contribution in this area since its foundation, taking into account that in the 15 years of its existence, it has invested over 1.4 million euros in socially responsible activities, and that 14 generations of elementary and high school students have gone through the free doMEn programming school. The company was one of the sponsors of the robotics competition, the Olympiad of Knowledge, and invested in the creation of content that will direct children to new technologies through its STEMedukacija.me portal and projects such as "My Future STEM Occupation".
At the same time, the Association adds that the doMEn company is among the first representatives of the private sector who have been actively working on the development of the Montenegrin startup ecosystem for more than a decade. The community itself regularly participates in the opportunities that doMEn creates, of which the Spark.Me conference stands out - one of the largest business and technology conferences in the region. As part of the competition organized by the company, startup teams, with the help of its sponsorship, were given the opportunity to present their solutions at the largest technological conference, Tech Crunch, which takes place every year in San Francisco.
Thanks to all the initiatives that the doMEn company launched in Montenegro, the country became part of the regional and European ICT scene, and doMEn thus became recognizable as a sincere and dedicated partner of the Montenegrin IT community. Thanks to the projects that doMEn started with the "Vaso Aligrudić" Electrical Engineering School, members of Cortex continued to support this school and provided funds of around 550.000 euros from the Regional Challenge Fund, which will be used for the modernization of the school, which will be one of the largest non-refundable investments in some secondary vocational school in Montenegro.
The fact that doMEn, as an export-oriented company with the best export brand of Montenegro, primarily contributes to the economy of Montenegro and economic development through the export of products and services, which in 2022 amounted to over 8 million euros, should not be ignored either.
All these activities and many others that are implemented by the domestic IT sector should contribute to the strengthening of human and financial resources for the development of the IT sector in Montenegro, in order to attract and initiate new and foreign investments. In order for them to function as such a system, the support and understanding of the Government and institutions is necessary in order for them to be considered as a desirable and safe country for IT investments and with the capacities that can carry out such projects.
As responsible partners of the Government of Montenegro in the implementation of development policies, ICT Cortex appeals that it is necessary to work on improving and creating an attractive business environment for investments in the growing IT sector, in which every investor and IT company will enjoy full respect for the rule of law. While the solution to all problems should be sought through an adequate and timely dialogue.