Monday, 20 September 2021

More Than 1.2 Million Rubbish Containers Placed in Croatian Locations

September the 20th, 2021 - 407 Croatian locations (cities and municipalities) received containers for separate waste collection from households that were procured and distributed through the Fund for Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency recently.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/PD and VL native tim writes, to be more precise, Croatian locations received 1,230,695 various bins and containers of various volumes for the separate collection of paper, plastic, biowaste and other recyclable waste.

The containers were procured as part of a project with a total investment of around 370 million kuna, and the vast majority of this amount was provided through EU funds through the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development.

“Logistically speaking, this was a very demanding project. After the public procurement procedure was carried out and contracts were signed with the selected bidders, a schedule of activities was made and deadlines for their execution were agreed.

In the Environmental Protection Sector, several teams have been formed that have been on the ground almost every day for the past six months and in constant communication with representatives of local governments, utilities and suppliers,'' explained Aleksandra Cilic, pointing out that despite all of the unprecedented challenges the coronavirus pandemic and the earthquake presented, this project has been successfully implemented on time.

She added that they also had the professional support of other sectors and services from within the same fund, which took on a lot of work and without whose help this project couldn't have been successfully implemented.

"Now that almost every household will have the proper containers for separate waste collection, no one will have an alibi or an excuse not to do so," said Cilic.

The rate of separate waste collection from Croatia is encouragingly growing from year to year. According to the data for last year, it amounted to 41 percent, and it is to be expected that the result for this year will be even better with this newly purchased and distributed communal infrastructure.

According to Cilic, the number of Croatian household properly separating their household waste will certainly grow, but education at all levels is crucial - from utility companies engaged in the processes involved to regular citizens.

"This summer, a video of an Italian tourist who wanted to throw his plastic packaging in the designated waste container spread across social media, but after he lifted the lid, he was unpleasantly surprised when he saw that all the waste had ended up being placed in the same bag. Unfortunately, such a reckless practice of some utility companies puts a dampener on all the efforts made to establish a waste management system and it undermines public confidence in the same system,'' stated Cilic.

Regardless of such isolated cases, it is crucial that people collect and dispose of their waste separately because all useful components, especially paper, plastic, glass and bio-waste are all properly recycled or composted. It is therefore necessary to transform a take-use-discard linear economy into a true circular economy, which is why thinking about sustainable circular systems needs to be implemented across all activities and sectors, including policies, products, production processes and business models. Education and public information play a key role in all this, and many Croatian locations now having the proper means should mean there can be no more excuses.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Associations Say National COVID Team Unjust Towards Night Clubs, Bars

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The Voice of Entrepreneurs and the Night Clubs and Bars Association say it is pointless that night clubs and bars are not allowed to stay open after midnight and that this decision by the national COVID-19 crisis management team is unjust, notably now that almost all of the EU has lifted restrictions on them.

Night clubs and bars have paid the highest price of the pandemic, the two associations said in a press release on Sunday.

The national team is not considering allowing night clubs to stay open without restrictions, provided that COVID rules are complied with, as though they are the only ones to blame for the insufficient vaccination rate in Croatia and rise in infections, the statement said.

The associations said that if night clubs were allowed to operate indoors without restrictions, with the use of COVID certificates, that might encourage young people to get vaccinated.

By ignoring the constitutional right to work, the activity of night clubs and the hundreds of night club owners and their families are being marginalised, the press release said.

Despite the government's job-retention aid and compensation for fixed costs, night club and bar owners cannot avoid closures and bankruptcies, it added.

Every individual must take responsibility for their health, the associations said, adding that by not allowing night clubs and bars to work in order to protect people who refused to get vaccinated, the national COVID team was bringing into question the purpose of vaccination.

They said they had not worked for 18 months and asked Prime Minister Andrej Plenković to try and live nine months without pay.

They told the national team to immediately open night clubs and bars, provided that COVID rules were complied with, or take responsibility for the ruin of the entertainment industry.

For more on COVID-19, follow TCN's dedicated page.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

“Crvena Voda” by Jurica Pavičić Voted Best Int’l Crime Novel in France in 2021

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The French translation of the novel "Crvena Voda" (Red Water) by writer and journalist Jurica Pavičić won the prestigious Grand Prix de Littérature Policière award for best international crime novel in France in 2021.

The Grand Prix de Littérature Policière is one the most prestigious literary awards which has been given since 1948 in two categories: for the best French and the best international crime novel. Some of the past winners of the award for the best international crime novel are Patricia Highsmith, Stanisław Lem, Mary Higgins Clark, Elmore Leonard, P. D. James, Michael Connelly, Ian Rankin, and Cammila Läckberg.

"Crvena Voda" was published in Croatia by Profil, and it was translated into French by Olivier Lannuzel under the title "L'Eau Rouge". The translation was published by the Agullo publishing house, which congratulated Pavičić on an excellent novel and Lannuzel on an excellent translation.

At the festival Quais du Polar in Lyon in July, the novel received the prestigious Le Point du Polar Européen award for the best crime novel by an European author, written in French or translated into French. The novel has recently also won the award for best international crime novel by the French culture monthly magazine Transfuge.

In Croatia, Pavičić's novel received the Ksaver Šandor Gjalski and Fric literary awards.

"Crvena Voda" is the story of a family tragedy and the search for answers, which becomes a story about Croatia and the traumas of its society over three decades through the fates of the main characters. The novel was originally published in 2017, and before being translated into French, it also had a German edition.

For more on Made in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

HUT: Over 1,000 Pupils From Quake-Hit Sisak County Offered Free Seaside Holidays

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The Croatian Tourism Association (HUT) continues implementing its project of offering free seaside holidays for primary and secondary school students from the earthquake-affected areas in Sisak-Moslavina County.

All the 12 hotel companies within HUT, in cooperation with four ministries, decided to provide free holidays on the coast for over 1,000 students and teachers from 13 schools in the quake-hit Sisak-Moslavina County's areas.

At the launch of the scheme in June, 180 pupils from three elementary schools spent the summer holidays in Valamar hotels in Istria.

The implementation of the programme resumed in mid-September for students from the remaining 10 schools covered by the scheme and will last until mid-October.

The free-of-charge stay is provided in the following hotels: Aminess hoteli Novigrad, Plava laguna Poreč, Maistra Rovinj, Arena Hospitality Group Pula, Jadranka Mali Lošinj, Jadran Crikvenica, Hoteli Omišalj, Falkensteiner Zadar, Turisthotel Zadar, Bluesun Hoteli Zagreb, Imperial Riviera Rab and Radisson Blu Resort & Spa Split.

HUT director Veljko Ostojić was quoted as saying that he was glad to see that the successful tourist season could be wrapped up with this charitable action.

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Croatian Electronic Communications Market Sees Increases in Revenue and Investment

ZAGREB, 19 Sept , 2021 - The Croatian electronic communications market saw a 5% increase in total revenues in the first half of 2021 compared with the same period in 2020, while operators' investments rose by 4%, according to the data provided by the Croatian Regulatory Authority for Network Industries (HAKOM).

Revenues from broadband Internet access increased by 10%, from network rental by 7% and from pay television by 4%.

Investment in fiber optic infrastructure rose by 121%, and the number of connections using this technology went up by 32%. 

In the second quarter of the year the share of high-speed broadband connections of 30 Mbit/s and higher was 49% of the total number of connections. The number of broadband connections of 100 Mbit/s and higher is also increasing, reaching 22% in the total number of connections in the second quarter of 2021.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Ombudswoman: Solution to Violence Against Women Lies in Continuous Education

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The key to solving the problem of violence against women lies primarily in the continuous education of those applying laws and regulations, gender equality ombudswoman Višnja Ljubičić has said on the occasion of the National Day of Combating Violence Against Women, observed on 22 September.

She welcomed the latest amendments to the criminal code and the law on protection against domestic violence, which eliminated some key shortcomings in the effective suppression of gender-based violence, but said the key was to keep educating those applying laws and regulations, rather than in frequently changing legislation.

Serious acts of gender-based violence are often tried as misdemeanours and serious cases of sexual, domestic and gender-based violence are recognised too late, when we witness femicide, Ljubičić said a statement.

Since 2015, when it was reinstated into the criminal code, domestic violence has been continuously and significantly increasing while misdemeanour complaints have been continuously decreasing since 2009, she said.

The number of misdemeanour domestic violence complaints dropped from over 18,000 in 2009 to a little over 9,000 in 2020, while the number of criminal complaints surged from 400 to over 4,000.

The conclusion is that, in the long term, our system of combating violence against women and domestic violence deters victims from reporting lighter forms of violence until the situation escalates and enters the sphere of criminal law, when violence can no longer be suffered or hidden as the outcome is often tragic, Ljubičić said.

Such a misdemeanour system is not preventative and does not provide an effective and prompt response to violence, she added.

There is a lack of effective and systematic prevention outside the legal system as well as of investment in resocialisation programmes for perpetrators, she said, adding that prevention boiled down to fining or giving them suspended sentences, instead of the harshest ones.

Ljubičić said such a system of combating gender-based and domestic violence showed its weaknesses especially in crises, such as the ongoing pandemic, adding that the number of crimes of domestic violence jumped 40% from 2019.

According to Interior Ministry figures for this year through 31 August, there were 5,522 registered perpetrators of misdemeanour domestic violence, with men making up 77%, as well s 6,333 victims, with women making up 63.8%. There were also 1,153 registered victims of domestic violence crimes, of whom 86% were women.

Ljubičić said the figures were potentially mildly up from 2020, but that the rise in rapes in the first seven months of 2021 was worrisome.

Everything points to the need to effect the necessary changes in the whole system, notably in the prevention and suppression of violence against women, she added.

For more news about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Three Croatian Municipalities Nominated for UNWTO “Best Tourism Villages” Award

ZAGREB, Sept 19 Sept, 2021 - The municipalities of Kaštelir-Labinci, Motovun and Veliko Trojstvo are the Croatian nominees for the "Best Tourism Villages" award, launched in May this year by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) as a pilot-project designed to promote the role of rural tourism.

As part of the project, UNWTO members could nominate up to three candidates - villages or municipalities that are initiators of sustainable social, economic and environmental changes in the member countries.

Kaštelir-Labinci and Motovun are municipalities in Istria County and Veliko Trojstvo is a municipality in Bjelovar-Bilogora County.

The UNWTO initiative includes three pillars and two awards. Villages that are exceptional examples of rural tourism destinations and are committed to sustainability in all its forms - economic, social and environmental - will be given "Best Tourism Villages" awards.

Villages that do not fully meet the criteria for this award will be provided with support from the UNWTO and its partners to work on problematic areas.

Also, a network of the best UNWTO tourism villages will be created to provide a platform for the exchange of experience and good practices, learning and creation of new development opportunities.

The purpose of the UNWTO initiative is to strengthen the role of tourism as a positive force for transformation, rural development and community well-being in an effort to reduce regional inequalities and fight depopulation of rural areas.

The winners of the UNWTO awards will be announced during the 24th UNWTO General Assembly session, to be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 30 November-3 December.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Parliament Building to Undergo Reconstruction

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The Croatian parliament's building, a heritage building in St. Mark's Square in downtown Zagreb, will undergo reconstruction due to the significant damage sustained in the March 2020 earthquake, a parliament source has told Hina.

Due to the procedures that need to be undertaken before the reconstruction, they could not specify how long reconstruction will last.

The source said that after the Zagreb earthquake, parliament applied for EU Solidarity Fund money intended for the reconstruction of the cultural heritage and was approved a HRK 87.6 million grant.

The National Recovery and Resilience Plan envisages financing the whole reconstruction, including making the building more energy-efficient, from the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility.

After the project documentation is prepared, there will be a public consultation, followed by public procurement.

Last December's Petrinja earthquake, which was strongly felt in Zagreb, only confirmed that the parliament building, which has not undergone major renovations in years, needs to be reconstructed.

The early 18th century two-storey building spreads over 1,900 square metres and has 41 rooms.

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

SDP Leader Talks Conflict Within Party, COVID Certificates

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - Social Democratic Party president Peđa Grbin said on Saturday he was ready for radical measures against the caucus members who would be for the four ousted members staying in the caucus, adding that he would do his best to prevent a split within the party and that it was now up to the caucus.

The SDP parliamentary group has 32 members, of whom 18 demand that Grbin convene a caucus meeting to vote on the ousting of four caucus members - Rajko Ostojić, Zvane Brumnić, Nikša Vukas and Gordan Maras - who have been expelled from the party.

Speaking on Croatian Television, Grbin said the question was whether there was will in the caucus to resolve the situation through dialogue or continue the conflict.

He said it was now up to the parliamentary group to decide whether "the party will continue to deal with itself or start dealing with what citizens elected us for, which is to care for their interests and standard."

Asked if he was prepared to possibly have 12 or 14 MPs, Grbin said his goal was a strong SDP that was willing to stand up for people's interests.

He said there were many problems in Croatia and called the ruling HDZ "a clientelist organisation and a party which has done Croatia too much evil."

Grbin said if the situation in the SDP could not be solved through dialogue, he was prepared to take radical action, although he would rather not have to. He added that the situation was untenable and might become even more difficult if it was not solved shortly.

COVID certificates necessary because of negligence

Commenting on a protest against COVID rules held in Zagreb earlier in the day under the name Freedom Festival, Grbin said it was a festival of irresponsibility.

As for making COVID certificates a requirement in health and social care, he said Croatia's vaccination rate was the same as in India, Guyana and Colombia, and not as in Scandinavia as he would like.

Grbin said the certificates needed to be introduced "considering the inaction, negligence and poor government work," adding that "it's an indicator of failure and inaction."

He said the government should have but failed to assure people that nothing happened from vaccination, other than being safer.

For more on politics, follow TCN's dedicated page.

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Croatia's Participation in Eurovision Song Contest 2022 Confirmed

September 19, 2021 - HRT confirms Croatia's participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2022. The selection of Croatia's entry for Italy will once again be crowned through the Dora competition.

Croatia is again getting ready for the 66th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and is undeniably in high spirits. As HRT recently posted, “The beautiful September weather only contributes to the preparations for Dora and Eurovision 2022, which are in full swing! The Croatian national final for the Eurovision Song Contest will begin soon, so stay with us for more information.”

Since the country's debut in 1993, Dora has been used to select Croatia's entry for Eurovision except between 2012 to 2018 when Croatia had undergone a series of internal selections and withdrawals. In 2019, Dora returned and has been used ever since. 

According to Eurovoix, Dora 2022 is expected to take place in Opatija. The city has hosted all editions of the show except in 2011. Opatija and HRT signed a three-year deal to host Glazbeni Dani Hrvatske Radiotelevizije, which Dora is a part of.

Last year, Albina was chosen to represent Croatia in the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Tick-Tock". With the votes of the jury and public, the song made it in the top ten but landed 11th in the semi-final and did not qualify for the finals.

This year's Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Italy on May 22 following their victory with Maneskin's "Zitti e buoni" at the 2021 Eurovision contest. 

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