Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatian Clubs Learn First Champions League and Conference League Opponents

June 15, 2022 - Croatian clubs have learned their opponents in the upcoming Champions League and Conference League season. A look at what Dinamo, Hajduk, Osijek, and Rijeka have in store. 

In the second qualifying round of the Champions League, Croatian football champion Dinamo will play against the winner of the first qualifying round between North Macedonian club Shkupi and Lincoln Red Imps from Gibraltar. The draw was held in Nyon on Wednesday. 

Dinamo will host the first match, which will take place on July 19 or 20. The return match will be played on July 26 or 27. Dinamo thus avoided the Swiss champion Zurich and Slovan from Bratislava.

Dinamo will be the leader through all preliminary rounds. If they are successful in the second qualifying round, they are automatically guaranteed to play in the Conference League group stage, while entering the Champions League play-offs guarantees them the Europa League group stage. 

Later in the day, Osijek and Rijeka found out their rivals in the second qualifying round of the Conference League, while Hajduk will join the competition in the third qualifying round.

Osijek will play against Kyzylzhar from Kazakhstan, while Rijeka will play against the Swedish Djurgarden in the 2nd qualifying round of the Conference League.

The first matches will be played on Thursday, July 21, and the return matches one week later, on July 28.

This means that Osijek will play the first game in Kazakhstan, and play the return match at City Garden a week later, while Rijeka will play the first game at Rujevica.

The Kazakh championship is underway, and Osijek's rival is currently in 11th place. The Swedish Championship is also underway and Djurgarden is currently in fourth place.

Hajduk Split will start the competition in the 3rd qualifying round and learn their opponent only in July. Hajduk gathered for their first preseason training today. 

Coach Valdas Dambrauskas answered questions from numerous media representatives who came to see Hajduk at the training session held at Poljud Stadium.

"We did a good job last season, but we have to prepare for the future. Yes, we play for trophies, we play to make people happy and to have reasons to celebrate, but from today we have to talk about the next games, training, and meetings. What we have done is a part of the past. It is important for the club, but it remains in the past. We need to focus on the new season and new challenges and prepare to be in the best position to win," said Dambrauskas 

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated sports section

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatian FM Looking Forward to Opening EU-N. Macedonia Entry Talks Soon

ZAGREB, 15 June 2022 - Croatia hopes that the accession talks between the Eurpean Unon and North Macedonia will be opened soon, Croatia's Foreign and European Affairs Minister Gordan Grlić Radman said in Skopje on Wednesday.

Minister Grlić Radman began a two-day visit to North Macedonia on Wednesday.

At the start of his tour, he held talks with his North Macedonian counterpart Bujar Osmani.

He will also be received by Deputy Prime Minister in charge of European Affairs, Bojan Maričić, Prime Minister Dimitar Kovačevski, Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi and President Stevo Pendarovski.

After the talks, FM Osmani told a news conference that Croatia was well acquainted with the developments and Skopje appreciated Zagreb's support for North Macedonia's European journey.

During Croatia's chairmanship of the European Union in the first half of 2020, a decision was made on opening the membership negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania, however, Bulgaria imposed a veto over its dispute about the identity and language of North Macedonia, and the talks have not yet been launched, said the Croatian minister adding that Sofia is being put under pressure to remove that blockade.

"We sincerely hope that the accession negotiations will soon start," said Grlić Radman who will attend Prespa Forum in Ohrid on Thursday.

For more, check out our politics section.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatia Moves Up 13 Places in Latest World Competitiveness Ranking

ZAGREB, 15 June 2022 - Croatia has made progress in all factors of competitiveness and has moved up by 13 notches to 46th place on the IMD's World Competitiveness Ranking, according to the  World Competitiveness Yearbook published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD) on Wednesday.

Denmark reached the top spot for the first time in the ranking’s 34-year history, having come 3rd in 2021, while Croatia has made the biggest leap of 13 places from 59th to 46th position.

The World Competitiveness Centre ascribes Croatia's performance also to the improvement of business climate against a backdrop of the forthcoming accession to the euro area.

The ranking is based on the survey of the performance of each of 63 analysed countries in a total of 333 criteria. Two thirds of benchmarks are based on statistical data, and a third on opinions of entrepreneurs.

Concerning the Economic Performance benchmark, Croatia ranks 32rd, after it was on the 50 place in 2021.

Croatia has moved up from 57th to 46th palce in the Government Efficiency segment.

In terms of Business Efficiency, it has reached 49th place after it was ranked 64th in 2021, and in the Infrastructure segment, it has moved up 5 places to 45th.

The opinions of the respondents (Executive Opinion Survey) shows that Croatia's biggest advantage is skilled and qualified labour force and a high level of the education system.

The acting head of the Croatian Competitiveness Council, Ivan Mišetić, says in his statement that he is happy with the great improvement made by Croatia on the ranking.

Switzerland moved down to 2nd (from 1st) and Singapore rebounded to 3rd (from 5th), says the Lausanne-based organisation.

For more news about Croatia, click here.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatia's Inflation Picks Up 10.8% in May

ZAGREB, 15 June 2022 - Croatia's prices of goods and services for personal consumption, measured by the consumer price index, this May accelerated to 10.8% compared to May 2021, according to the data released by the national statistical office (DZS) on Wednesday.

In April, the inflation rate reached 9.4% year on year. This was a record high since July 2008 when its rate was 8.4%.

"Observing the main divisions of the ECOICOP classification, at the annual level, the highest increase on average in consumer prices was recorded in the following divisions: Transport, of 19.0%, Food and non-alcoholic beverages, of 15.2%, Restaurants and hotels, of 12.1%, Furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance, of 11.7%, Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, of 9.2%, Clothing and footwear, of 8.9%, Recreation and culture, of 6.6%, and Miscellaneous goods and services, of 6.2%," says the DZS.

"The largest contribution to the growth rate of the annual index came from the following divisions: Food and non-alcoholic beverages (+3.94 percentage points), Transport (+2.80 percentage points), Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (+1.55 percentage points) and Clothing and footwear (+0.52 percentage points)."

Month on month, May's inflation rises at  1.4% rate

At the monthly level, the highest increase on average in consumer prices was recorded in the divisions Transport, of 3.0% (contribution to the growth of +0.44 percentage points, due to higher prices of fuels and lubricants for personal transport equipment), Food and non-alcoholic beverages, of 2.1% (+0.54 percentage points), Furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance, of 1.5% (+0.09 percentage points), Recreation and culture, of 1.4% (+0.07 percentage points), Clothing and footwear and Restaurants and hotels, of 1.1% in each group (Clothing and footwear, +0.06 percentage points, and Restaurants and hotels, +0.05 percentage points), Miscellaneous goods and services, of 0.8% (+0.05 percentage points) and Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, of 0.5% (+0.08 percentage points).

For more, check out our politics section.



Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatia Logs 547 New COVID Cases, Two Related Deaths

ZAGREB, 15 June 2022 - In the past 24 hours, 547 new cases of SARS-CoV-2 virus have been recorded in Croatia, and two people have died, the national COVID task force reported on Wednesday.

There are currently a total of 2,098 active cases in Croatia. Among them, 151 patients are in hospital, of whom seven are on ventilators.

Since the first case recorded in Croatia on 25 February 2020, a total of 1,140,625 cases of the novel coronavirus have been recorded to date and 16,022 patients have died as a consequence. A total of 1,122,505 have recovered including 110 in the past 24 hours.

For everything you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, bookmark our dedicated section and select your preferred language if it isn't English.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Photographs of Mato Kaić Exhibited at the Zagreb Ethnographic Museum

June 15, 2022 - An exhibition of photographs by Mato Kaić, called "Light Paintings under the Bosnian Sky", opened at the Ethnographic Museum last night. 

"The exhibition of photographs of the first Livno amateur photographer from the beginning of the XX century Mate Kaić is a continuation of the successful collaboration of the Franciscan Museum and Gallery Gorica - Livno with the Ethnographic Museum started in 2015. This exhibition is the fruit of valuable acquisitions consisting of 327 glass plates color slides), cameras with accompanying photographic equipment, and several German photography manuals. The exhibition will feature photographs with ethnographic motifs, some of which were taken in Croatia, in Dubrovnik, Sinj, and Split, and are of great importance, because they represent a heritage that can only be seen today thanks to diligent lovers of photography and the region in which they lived.'', reads the description of the exhibition.

With his photography, Mato Kaić recorded and thus preserved historical events, his companions, vanished customs, landscapes, and architecture of cities. With his camera, he immortalized the views of Split, Rijeka dubrovačka, the Sinjska alka, beautiful landscapes of Kupreško, Livanjsko polje, and more.

The amateur photography of BiH from the beginning of the 20th century has been insufficiently researched, and Kaić's legacy partly sheds light and provides a better insight into the amateur photography of Bosnia and Herzegovina from the beginning of the 20th century and proves that amateur photographers have contributed to the development of art photography in the region.

The authors of the exhibition are Ružica Barišić and Željka Markov, senior librarian and manager, and museum advisor and curator at the Franciscan Museum and Gallery Gorica - Livno, reports Večernji List. The curator of the exhibition is Iris Biškupić Bašić, museum advisor of the Ethnographic Museum.

The exhibition was realized in cooperation with the Franciscan Museum and Gallery Gorica - Livno, and is held under the auspices of the Central State Office for Croats outside the Republic of Croatia. The project was made possible by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, the City of Zagreb - City Office of Culture and the Livno Community - Zagreb.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Zagrebačka Pivovara Invests HRK 64 Million in Technologically Advanced Line

June 15, 2022 - Zagrebačka pivovara has invested a total of HRK 64 million in a technologically advanced line for filling and packaging cans.

The investment in a technologically advanced line will fully satisfy the constant growth of market demand for canned beer in the Zagreb production plant, further increase the company's sustainability, the competitiveness of domestic production, and offer consumers new formats and multipacks of cans. It is part of the large investment cycle of Zagrebačka pivovara in the expansion of production and storage capacities with which the leading Croatian beer producer is celebrating its jubilee year and the 130th birthday of the company.

''As a market leader, we are celebrating our celebratory year with numerous gatherings with loyal consumers and large investments that will enable an increase in production capacity. The introduction of state-of-the-art technology will make it easier for us to protect the quality of the finished product, and enable us to increase the competitiveness of Zagrebačka pivovara on the FMCG market and within our Molson Coors Group. With the newly installed can line, we will fully meet the required filling capacities to meet the increased needs of the market. Congratulations to the team on the realization of this great project, but also on the 130th anniversary, we are taking great steps forward.", said Miroslav Holjevac, President of the Management Board of Zagrebačka pivovara.

The total investment of HRK 64 million relates to new equipment for filling and packing cans and construction work that was needed to adjust the production plant in Zagreb's Ilica 224 for the installation of a new line. Namely, due to limited space, the new line for cans is distributed on as many as four floors, which makes it unique in this production plant. The introduction of state-of-the-art technology with the new can filling line significantly reduces both energy consumption and the company's carbon footprint on the environment. Sustainable development is one of the priorities of Zagrebačka pivovara's business.

“We invested in the new can filling line last year and in the first half of this year, and we found a project partner in a long-standing and reliable partner, the German company Krones, one of the largest suppliers of packaging equipment in the process industry. In just two months, the teams of Zagrebačka pivovara and Krones have put together a lineup for its functional commissioning. It was demanding, but we are very proud of the result.", said Dubravko Tome, director of production and logistics operations of Zagrebačka pivovara.

Numerous distinguished guests gathered at yesterday's celebration of the 130th birthday of Zagreb Brewery and the presentation of the investment, including the Mayor of Zagreb Tomislav Tomašević, Deputy Mayor Danijela Dolenec, Canadian Ambassador Alan Bowman, Czech Ambassador Milan Hovorka, US Head of Mission in Croatia Mark Fleming and many others.

Mayor Tomislav Tomašević congratulated all the workers and the entire Management of Zagrebačka pivovara on the 130th anniversary of its existence. He especially praised investing in new investments in these challenging times. "I believe that this investment will not only increase production, but also provide new jobs, and the City of Zagreb will always be a partner in such investments.", said Mayor Tomasevic.

The entire investment cycle of Zagrebačka pivovara is planned for the next two years, followed by a major investment in the modernization of the line for filling returnable glass bottles, which will further increase productivity and diversify different bottle formats.

For more, check out our business section.


Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Iberia Croatia Flights Boosted from Madrid in July, Almost 20,000 Seats Available

June 15, 2022 - The latest flight news to Croatia as Iberia Croatia flights will be boosted from Madrid next month, namely running from Zagreb, Split, and Dubrovnik airports. 

Spanish airline Iberia, a Oneworld alliance member, plans to increase the number of weekly flights between Madrid and Croatian airports in July, reports Croatian Aviation.

The Spanish national airline already operates regular routes from its main base in Madrid to Split, Dubrovnik, and Zagreb.

Between Zagreb and Madrid, Iberia plans three flights a week in July, every Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday, while in the last week of July the number of weekly operations will increase to five. The airline is still selling daily flights between Zagreb and Madrid in August, but there is a possibility that will change.

Sixteen return flights between the two cities have been announced for July, exclusively with A320 aircraft, so 4,928 seats will be available on this route next month.

The Madrid - Split - Madrid line is currently running three times a week, while four flights a week have been announced for July; on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, also with A320 aircraft.

Seventeen return flights were announced on this route in July, and 5,236 seats are currently available.

Dubrovnik and Madrid should be connected on a daily basis in July. Iberia is planning daily operations with A320 and A319 aircraft announced on the route, and a total of 9,528 seats are available on 31 return flights in July.

Between Madrid and the three mentioned Croatian airports, Iberia is offering almost 20,000 seats in July. In addition to point-to-point passengers, the line is used by a significant number of transfer passengers, primarily from North and South America, given that according to destinations on the mentioned continents Iberia Airlines has developed a quality network of routes.

For more on flights to Croatia and other travel announcements, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.


Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatian Food Waste: How Much Do We Throw Away Each Year?

June the 15th, 2022 - When it comes to Croatian food waste, we throw away an alarming amount of perfectly decent items. A new EU initiative is set to change that.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, when it comes to Croatian food waste, every inhabitant threw away an average of 71 kilograms of food last year and 53 percent of food was thrown away from households, so reducing food waste will be the focus of the ''EU chooses safe food'' campaign by the Croatian Agriculture and Food Agency (HAPIH), as HRT reports.

"More than half of the total of Croatian food waste comes from households, and as much as 10 percent is the result of a lack of understanding of the expiration date on food. That's why it's necessary to continuously educate people and raise the level of awareness of our consumers,'' said the director of HAPIH, Darja Sokolic, before the start of the campaign that HAPIH is conducting together with the European Food Safety Agency.

More than a third of households (39 percent) never or rarely use leftover meals to prepare a new meal, and too much food bought and prepared, and then being too much to eat in one sitting, is cited as the most common reason for throwing away food.

Sokolic believes that people in Croatia are more interested in issues related to food safety compared to the EU average, which was contributed to by the high level of transparency and the frequent withdrawal of products from the market.

The head of the Food Safety Sector of the Ministry of Agriculture, Tomislav Kis, said that the EU legislation includes the highest standards of hygiene and food safety. The basic premise of the current legislation is self-control, Kis points out, which means that every manufacturer is responsible for controlling themselves because that reduces the risk to a minimum.

“We can make perfect food through the chain, but if some chicken stays in the kitchen for three days outside the refrigerator, there’s a chance it won’t be good. Everyone needs to do their part,'' said Kis at the panel discussion.

Last year, nine food-borne epidemics were recorded in Croatia with a total of 102 patients, among which the most common was salmonella poisoning, warned HAPIH in its statement.

Well-known chef Melkior Basic pointed out that globally speaking, most restaurants take care of food waste.

"Ingredients and food products are valuable items and it's a pity to throw away half of them due to carelessness and ignorance. Many foods, such as clear soup, can be frozen, and the food we cooked can be eaten again a day later,'' said Basic.

Across the European Union, 88 million tonnes of food worth a total of around 143 billion euros are thrown away every year. That's why the EU campaign for safe food is being implemented in nine other European Union countries: Austria, Italy, Spain, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Finland, Greece and Cyprus.

In addition to techniques that can reduce food waste to a minimum, people can learn more about the safety of new foods on the market, plant health, allergens, additives, packaging, dietary supplements and their overall health.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Rich Istrian Local Culture Luring Tourists, Driving Numbers Up

June the 15th, 2022 - Istrian local culture is doing very well in attracting tourists from all over the world, with traffic for the first five months of 2022 on the Istrian peninsula being excellent.

As Morski writes, larger Istrian towns and municipalities have been enjoying better results during these last five months than they did back during the same period in pre-pandemic 2019. Istrian local culture, which is abundant and very rich, from the Pula amphitheatre to the numerous small museums dotted throughout the county, is doing very well in drawing in the international crowds.

Statistics show that any tourist who comes to Istria for seven days visits the Euphrasian Basilica, the only Istrian monument under UNESCO protection, at least once. It attracts all generations and people from all walks of life.

''We liked it, it's interesting to get better acquainted with the history of this area, to see what they used to do and how they used to do it,'' said Sebastian and Filip from Germany.

Porec is also breaking records left, right and centre. In the first five months of 2022, they've enjoyed tourist results which are several percentage points better than the record year of 2019.

''June has started out very well, we're enjoying numbers which are as much as 20 percent higher than they were back in 2019, so we're going full speed into the peak of the tourist season,'' said Nenad Velenik, the director of the Porec Tourist Board.

The second pearl of Istria, gorgeous Rovinj, has enjoyed some even better numbers. The warmth which it somehow radiates, is a lure for tourists. The first eco-museum in the country is located in Rovinj and it has proved to be an unavoidable stop for visitors, even the most professional ones.

''Such museums are extremely important to tourism because they show what the tourism of the future should look like. They respect the rich legacy with the help of numerous technological innovations,'' emphasised Davide Gnola of the Maritime Museum of Cesenatico in Italy.

Come rain or shine, the imposing, ancient Pula Arena is always open to visitors, and recently it was additionally decorated with greenery. When it comes to Istrian local culture, few would fail to mention this astonishingly well-preserved Roman structure.

''Pula's monuments are some of the best preserved ancient monuments in the entire Mediterranean,'' stated Darko Komso, the director of the Archaeological Museum of Istria. Back during pre-pandemic years, it was visited by half a million tourists.

For more, check out our dedicated travel section.

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