Monday, 22 November 2021

Grlić Radman Meets with Croatian Community in Canada

ZAGREB, 22 Nov 2021 - Croatia's Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Gordan Grlić Radman, met with members of the Croatian community in Canada in the Croatian Martyrs Parish in Mississauga on Sunday, the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs said in a press release.

In his speech, Grlić Radman highlighted the role of Croatian parishes in fostering Croatian national identity, notably language, culture, and tradition. He described the parish in Mississauga as one of the best examples of dedication to promoting national consciousnesses and connections with Croatia.

The minister said that the Croatian government would continue to support the Croatian community in Canada by financing projects, Croatian language learning and scholarship programs, and supporting publishing activities.

"We will continue to support projects to preserve and promote cultural, scientific, economic, sports and other cooperation between Croatia and Canada," Grlić Radman said.

Grlić Radman thanked the Croatian community in Canada for their continued support to Croatia, including at the time of the Homeland War and last year's earthquake in Petrinja. He also emphasized their important role in strengthening the very good relationship between Croatia and Canada, the press release said.

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

Monday, 22 November 2021

Air Serbia Belgrade-Zagreb Flights Running Daily in December

November 22, 2021 - Air Serbia Belgrade-Zagreb flights will run daily in December, so long as the Zagreb fog allows it! 

Serbian national airline Air Serbia will increase the number of operations between Zagreb and Belgrade, operating daily in December, reports Croatian Aviation.

Since the pandemic's beginning and immediately after the lockdown, Air Serbia resumed traffic between Belgrade and Zagreb, constantly changing the number of weekly operations and adjusting them to the demand itself. Until December 5, six flights a week have been announced, every day except Tuesdays, and from December 7, Air Serbia will introduce a flight on Tuesdays, meaning they will run between the two cities every day. 

From December 10, there are two flights a day on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays, which will increase the number of weekly frequencies to 10!

Namely, on certain days, Air Serbia will land late at night in Zagreb, while the return flight to Belgrade will be before dawn, around 4 am. Given that the difference between the incoming and outgoing flights will be short, it is to be expected that the crew will wait for the return flight on the aircraft.

ATR72 aircraft with a capacity of 70 seats have been announced for all flights. However, Croatian Aviation states that the problem for the airline is the weather conditions in Zagreb, i.e., the thick fog due to which ATR72 aircraft are often unable to land in the Croatian capital. In that case, the airline is forced to either cancel the flight, delay the flight and wait for the weather to improve, or do what was done last night due to fog - replace the aircraft on the line with a larger type for which fog is not an obstacle.

For example, the visibility in Zagreb last night was only 200 meters, so instead of the ATR, the A319 landed in Zagreb with an hour delay, carrying 52 passengers. As a result, only 30 passengers left Zagreb for Belgrade on Sunday night.

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

Monday, 22 November 2021

2022 World Cup Costs: How Much Will Croatia Fans Spend in Qatar?

November 22, 2021 - Now that Croatia has qualified for Qatar and we can start making rough plans for next year, what are the 2022 World Cup costs for Croatia fans in Qatar? 

We are one year away from the 2022 World Cup. It will be opened by the host Qatar in the 1st round Group A match on November 21, 2022, starting at 1 pm local time, or 11 am Croatian time, at Al Bayt Stadium.

Four matches will be played every day in the competition's group stage at 11:00, 14:00, 17:00, and 20:00 Croatian time in the first two rounds, and at 16:00 and 20:00 in the third round when teams from the same group will play at the same time. The final is scheduled for December 18 at 16:00 at Lusail Iconic Stadium.

Croatia will play in its sixth World Cup, and since its debut in France in 1998, it missed only South Africa in 2010. Croatia became the seventh national team to qualify for the World Cup and did so earlier than ever. Qatar, Germany, Denmark, Brazil, France, Belgium, Spain, Serbia, England, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and Argentina have also qualified. So far, only 13 national teams are known. The remaining national teams will be learned in January, February, March, and June.

Asia has four more rounds in their two qualifying groups. The top teams leading to a spot in Qatar are Iran, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Japan, while the third-placed teams (the winners play each other and the winner goes to the intercontinental playoffs) are the UAE and Australia. Another 12 national teams from the Asia zone will qualify for the World Cup.

There are 10 teams from Africa, and a draw for the play-off pairs next week in which, according to the FIFA ranking, the seeded teams will be Senegal, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and Nigeria, and unseeded Egypt, Cameroon, Ghana, Mali, and DR Congo. After that, two matches will be played in March, and the winners will go to the World Cup.

There are six rounds left in the CONCACAF zone, and all eight national teams still have mathematical chances. Canada, the US, and Mexico are in the lead for a spot in Qatar, while Panama could see an intercontinental play-off.

No one has dropped out yet in South America. Brazil and Argentina have secured the World Cup, and eight spots can still be claimed. Ecuador and Colombia are the most likely, and if Peru finished the qualifications now, they would go to the playoffs. 

Eleven national teams should participate in Oceania qualifiers next year, and the winner will also go to the playoffs. In Europe, on the other hand, there are 12 more nations fighting for Qatar, which will be divided into three tournaments. The winners of each will go to the World Cup.

Thus, there are 19 places left and 61 national teams fighting for Qatar. 2022 World Cup matches will be played at eight stadiums in five cities, Al Khor, Al Rayyan, Al Wakrahu, Doha, and Lusail. Qatar is a country with about 2.8 million inhabitants, located on 11,581 square kilometers, which is less than the area of the four Dalmatian counties combined (12,951 km2), so distance is no problem. Namely, the southernmost Al Wakrah to the northernmost Al Khor is only about 70 kilometers by road.

But coming to the Arabian Peninsula from Croatia is another story. 

Jutarnji List made an approximate estimate of how much the World Cup in Qatar would cost for Croatia fans if the World Cup were played in November and December this year, and if Croatia remained in the tournament from start to finish, like in Russia 2018.

The cheapest direct return flights from Zagreb - Doha today are around 4,600 kuna, with the possibility that you can find flights of up to 4,000 kuna for fans who have no problem changing several times and extending the trip to ten hours. The direct Zagreb - Doha flight lasts 5 hours and 15 minutes.

FIFA has not yet announced ticket prices or ticket sales. Suppose the amounts are in the range of the 2018 World Cup, the total consumption of a Croatia fan who would stop watching Croatia only in the final is 13,000 kuna. The cheapest tickets for three matches in the group stage would cost $315, for the round of 16 $115, for the quarterfinals $175, for the semifinals $285, and the final $455. In total, it is $1,345 US dollars or almost 9,000 kuna.

There is currently a lot of affordable accommodation in Qatar, though the quality is questionable. For example, you can find an apartment in Doha for 9,200 kuna for four people (two beds) via Airbnb for a month, which is 2,300 kuna per person. Admittedly, there are few of these offers, but likely none like this during the 2022 World Cup. However, it's safe the say that private one-month accommodations could be found for 5, 6, 7 thousand kuna per person.

The cheapest accommodation for an individual through is currently 14,000 kuna/month. Jutarnji thus calculated a minimum of 15,000 kuna/month plus the daily cost of food, drinks, and transportation in Qatar, requiring at least 20,000 kuna for those who do not seek luxury but see Qatar as a great adventure.

A large pizza is around 90 kuna in well-known branded pizzerias and fast food menus around 40 kuna, calculated from Qatari riyals (1 rial is around 1.8 kuna). If the World Cup starts today, between 25,000 and 30,000 kuna would be needed for the average Croatia fan in Qatar for a month, providing Croatia goes to the final. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Monday, 22 November 2021

HNL Round 16 Recap: Hajduk Beats Rijeka at Rujevica, Dinamo-Osijek 1:1

November 22, 2021 - The 16th round of the Croatian First League was held from November 19 to 21, 2021. This round saw two of the biggest derbies in Croatian football, as Hajduk topped Rijeka at Rujevica and Dinamo and Osijek drew at Maksimir. Here is our HNL round 16 recap. 

Hr. Dragovoljac v. Slaven Belupo (1:2)

Dragovoljac and Belupo opened the 16th round on Friday, November 19, 2021, in Zagreb. 

Bosec opened the match for an early Belupo lead at 0:1 in the 3rd minute. Krstanovic increased their lead with a penalty in the 10th minute for 0:2. Majstorovic gave Dragovoljac some hope with a goal in the 73rd minute, but after a Lukic red card in the 87th minute, the match ended 1:2 for Belupo. 


Dragovoljac is currently in the last place with 7 points, while Belupo is in 9th with 13. 

Dinamo v. Osijek (1:1)

Dinamo and Osijek met on Saturday, November 20, 2021, at Maksimir Stadium. 

Fiolic put Osijek ahead in the 16th minute for 0:1 at the half. Petkovic equalized in the 80th minute for 1:1, which was the final score. 


Dinamo is currently in 3rd place with 28 points (and two games less), while Osijek is in 1st with 31 (and one game less).

Istra 1961 v. Sibenik (3:4) 

Istra and Sibenik met in Pula on November 20, 2021. 

Jakolis put Sibenik ahead in the 38th minute for 0:1, before Marin scored the equalizer 6 minutes later for 1:1 at the half. Beljo missed a penalty for Istra in the 59th minute, and Sibenik retook the lead thanks to Delic two minutes later (1:2). Delic scored again in the 72nd minute for 1:3, before Beljo redeemed himself and scored for 2:3 in the 82nd. Miskovic equalized 5 minutes later for 3:3, but it was Jakolis to score the winning goal for Sibenik in the 7th minute of stoppage time for the final 3:4. 


Istra is in 8th place with 15 points (and one game less), while Sibenik is in 7th with 18. 

Gorica v. Lokomotiva (2:2)

Gorica and Lokomotiva met in Velika Gorica on Sunday, November 21, 2021. 

Fruk put Gorica ahead in the 2nd minute for 1:0. Prsir increased Gorica's lead to 2:0 in the 24th. Ibrahim gave Lokomotiva hope before halftime, scoring in the 34th minute for 1:2. Pivaric scored the equalizer for Lokomotiva in the 60th minute and the final 2:2. 


Gorica is currently in 6th place with 22 points, while Lokomotiva is in 5th with 22. 

Rijeka v. Hajduk (2:3)

Rijeka and Hajduk closed out the 16th round with the Adriatic Derby at Rujevica on Sunday, November 21, 2021. 

After his first goal was called offside, Livaja scored just before the halftime whistle to put Hajduk ahead 0:1. Drmic equalized in the 53rd minute for 1:1. Rijeka was awarded a penalty in the 79th minute, which Muric scored for 2:1. Hajduk followed suit with a penalty five minutes later. Livaja was solid for 2:2. Hajduk had a corner in the match's final play, which found Mlakar's head for the 2:3 Hajduk win. 


Rijeka is currently in 2nd place with 30 points (and one game less), while Hajduk is in 4th with 27 (and one game less). 

You can see the full HNL table HERE.  

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Monday, 22 November 2021

Croatian State Support Rose to 21.1 Billion Kuna in 2020

November the 22nd, 2021 - 2020 was a year unlike any other for the vast majority of people, if not everyone. A global pandemic had taken the entire world by storm and countries all scrambled to try to find solutions in a truly unprecedented global crisis. Croatian state support reached a massive 21.1 billion kuna during that extraordinarily challenging year.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, back on Wednesday, the Government accepted the report on Croatian state support for 2020, which shows that a total of 21.1 billion kuna aid/support was granted in that period, equal to 40 percent more than in 2019, while aid to support the economy during the coronavirus pandemic amounted to 1.64 billion kuna.

State Secretary at the Ministry of Finance, Zdravko Zrinusic, stated at the recent Government session that "the movement of allocated Croatian state support in 2020 is marked by the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which in part affected the structure of granted aid." He pointed out that the continuous growth of granted aid continued and that it increased by 40 percent when compared to 2019.

The share of subsidies granted in GDP stood st 5.68 percent. Per employee, subsidies in 2020 amounted to 13,666.64 kuna, which is an increase of 3,977.93 kuna or 41.1 percent when compared to the pre-pandemic year of 2019.

Last year, the agriculture and fisheries sector received a massive 7.7 billion kuna in support payments, an increase of 15 percent when compared to the previous year, while aid in the industry and services sector amounted to 13.4 billion kuna or 60 percent more in total.

Croatian state support paid out to support the domestic economy during the coronavirus pandemic throughout 2020 was granted and paid out to various industries and companies for the first time ever, with job preservation measures included, and that all amounted to 1.64 billion kuna, representing a share of 7.8 percent in the total support granted.

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

Monday, 22 November 2021

Netflix Paying Royalties for Music Shown on Films in Croatia for First Time

November the 22nd, 2021 - The wildly popular Netflix is set to pay out royalties to musicians, including those from Croatia, whose music has been featured in various series and moves shown on the platform here in Croatia for the first time.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Sergej Novosel Vuckovic writes, the aforementioned royalties will be paid out to those musicians who had their work featured by Netflix in Croatia from 2016 to 2019, more precisely since the platform entered the Croatian market.

For the first time, the Croatian Compsers' Society (HDS) will pay out royalties for the content shown on Netflix through its professional Copyright Protection Service (ZAMP). This is the first concrete effect we've seen since last year's signing of the HDS music licensing agreement and the world's largest video-on-demand (VOD) platform, according to the professional association.

In the first year of broadcasting in the Republic of Croatia, Netflix, at least according to data provided to ZAMP, offered nearly 43,000 individual titles (movies and series episodes), and in 2019, they offered more than 163,000. In just four years of the platform being present and available, Croatian users have consumed the content in more than 33 million streams, and ZAMP have processed it all, the result of that process being that all of the above contained music by more than 15,000 different authors and rights holders from around the world.

“There are also local Croatian authors among them, members of HDS, whose work is being used in series and movies shown on Netflix. The authors of music in Croatian films such as Ti mene nosis (You carry me) or those whose works were used in the first two seasons of the Novine (The Paper) series will also receive royalties.

''This represents a continuation of a successful digital business and the opening of a new source of income for music authors or rights holders,'' the association stated, but specific amounts for the authors were not disclosed.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Monday, 22 November 2021

Zadar Captain Josko Skoblar Rescues Cuban Nationals in Gulf of Mexico

November the 22nd, 2021 - Zadar captain Josko Skoblar has rescued Cuban nationals who had come unstuck and ended up in grave danger in the Gulf of Mexico.

As Morski writes, Zadar captain Josko Skoblar, together with his crew, heroically participated in the sacred duty of all sailors. Namely, at the beginning of November this year, while sailing through the Gulf of Mexico, Captain Skoblar and his crew rescued two unfortunate Cuban nationals who had been floating helplessly in the sea for days, holding on only to plastic canisters and pieces of wood. It is a real miracle that they managed to survive.

Zadar captain Josko Skoblar told an incredible story about rescuing the unfortunate Cuban nationals:

''I'm currently sailing on the Dakota Strength, [249 metres long]. It is a crude oil tanker with a capacity of 115,000 MT, [which was built in 2007]. The ship was en route from Philadelphia to Mexico, where we loaded the current cargo.

On November the 1st, at a position of 100 Nm northeast of the Yucatan Peninsula, at 09:30 local time, some people were observed floating around in the sea. By the time they were spotted, they were only a few hundred yards to our side. Something like that floating around in the sea is extremely difficult to observe. These people had clung onto two plastic canisters and pieces of wood and nothing else, something like that can't really be detected by radar but only visually. I can say that it's just a coincidence that we noticed them.

The guard officer informed me and I immediately headed for the bridge of command myself, but at the moment of arrival the target fell out of sight. The crew was immediately alerted, the observation position was marked out on the electronic map and I initiated the rescue operation. I began to turn the ship around, a lifeboat was prepared, and an additional guard was set up on the bridge. The first aid team was placed on standby.

After some fifteen to twenty minutes, the target was finally spotted again and I headed towards the people. Although the team on the rescue boat was on standby, I finally managed to maneuver closer to the people who were just several dozen metres away. We tossed life rings to them and drew them to the ship’s ladder over which we loaded them onto the ship. From the moment they were spotted, they were on our ship in an hour.

Two Cuban nationals were injured and in a rather bad condition. We immediately transferred them to the ship’s hospital, gave them fluids, dry clothes and everything else to make them feel better. According to their statements, the injured Cuban nationals were leaving Cuba for Cancun in Mexico when their ship was sunk by a storm. We later learned that there were eight people on board at the time of the accident, but the other six sadly didn't survive.

The two surviving Cubans spent as much as six days at sea, carried by the Gulf stream which is quite warm in that area. The sea was at a temperature of about 28 degrees and the injured Cubans had managed to survive. I later made contact with the MRCC Mexico (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) and arranged for the reception of casualties on the Mexican Coast Guard patrol boat Oceanica Vera Cruz. The injured people were then transferred to a patrol boat at 22:00 local time on the same day, after which we continued our journey to the port of embarkation.

At the moment when they disembarked from our ship, they had already recovered well and were able to walk on their own, the heroic Zadar captain Josko Skoblar stated.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Monday, 22 November 2021

How Kaiser Franz Josef I Ship Once Connected Dubrovnik and New York

November the 22nd, 2021 - The City of Dubrovnik, Croatia's southernmost city and longtime tourist Mecca, now relies very heavily on air traffic. It wasn't always so. Way back in 1912, the Kaiser Franz Josef I ship once connected Dubrovnik to a famous destination across the pond - fabulous New York.

As Morski/Ivo Batricevic writes, on the slipways of the Cantiere Navale Triestino shipyard in Monfalcone, the Kaiser Franz Josef I passenger ship was built in 1912 for the shipping company Unione Austriaca di Navigazione.

It had a 12567 GT, was 152 metres long, 18.9 metres wide, could accommodate 125 passengers in the first, 550 in the second and 1230 passengers in the third class. The main propulsion piston steam engine with a power of 12,800 hp produced by the Scottish D. Rowan & Co in Glasgow enabled it to sail at a speed of 17 knots. Until 1925, the vessel used garbun to drive the steam engine, and later diesel fuel, writes the chronicler Ivo Batricevic for local portal Dubrovacki dnevnik.

The Kaiser Franz Josef I ship was destined for voyages from the Italian town of Trieste to New York, calling in along the way to the ports of Dubrovnik or Split, Patras, Palermo and Algeria. It made his first commercial voyage on a tourist cruise departing from Trieste on May the 8th, 1912 with the following itinerary: Pula - Dubrovnik - Corfu - Malta - Tunisia - Ajaccio - Nice - Taormina - Katakolon - Kotor - Split - Zadar - Trieste. But as World War I broke out just a couple of years later, the ship found itself in Trieste where it was dismantled and almost undamaged, waiting patiently for the end of the devastating war to come.

After the First World War finally drew to a close, the Kaiser Franz Josef I ship changed its name to Presidente Wilson

The well-preserved liner ended up in Italian hands under the name General Diaz in the fleet of the shipping company Cosulich. In May 1919, for the same shipowner with the new name Presidente Wilson, it undertook the first overseas voyage from Genoa via Marseille all the way over to New York. However, the next voyage departed from Trieste via Messina and Naples, and then headed on to New York. Initially, it mainly transported soldiers on their way home, and later on, it undertook its very first commercial trips.

Presidente Wilson first sailed into the port of Gruz in Dubrovnik on the 27th of February 1921 while sailing a regular route from New York via Algeria, Naples and Patras. It sailed like this regularly until April the 9th, 1927, when it bypassed the Port of Dubrovnik and began to dock in the larger port of the City of Split, a little further north in Central Dalmatia. The Dubrovnik public of the time was indignant at the indifference of the city administration to this, as they had allowed Split to snatch such a prestigious deal from Gruz. Because, in addition to a lucrative deal with immigrants, most travellers would take the opportunity to tour Dubrovnik while the ship was docked, which brought great benefits to domestic traders and carriers.

The ship's passengers toured Dubrovnik and liked what they saw...

On the occasion of this vessel's arrival in November 1923, the local weekly "Narodna svijest" noted that "24 passengers and 400 bags of mail disembarked from the ship. Many travellers disembarked at the end, toured our city, and were enchanted by the romantic natural beauty of our region. Thus, Presidente Wilson, although employed in regular passenger sailing, became the initiator of the first organised tourist visits to Dubrovnik after the First World War. That's why the grief and anger over its departure in 1927 to Split was so great among Dubrovnik's residents.

However, the people of Split didn't enjoy this ship's visits for all that long either. As early as mid-1929, The ship interrupted its regular travels to join Lloyd Trieste's fleet in 1930, for which it sailed for the Far East under the name Gange. As early as 1936, it changed its owner and name again. The fleet of the Trieste shipping company Societa Adriatica di Navigazione had by then been refurbished and modernised, under the name Marco Polo.

The former Kaiser Franz Josef I returned to Dubrovnik on August the 18th, 1937 carrying 208 passengers and 229 crew members, then sailing for the last time to Croatia's southernmost city on July the 17th, 1939 with 130 passengers - never to return again. It was soon dispatched to the port of La Spezia. With the capitulation of Italy, the ship passed, much like everything else, directly into German hands. Due to the danger of Allied attacks from the sea, on May the 12th, 1944, the Germans mined and sank the ship in order to block the entrance to La Spezia. It remained lying on the seabed until 1949, when it was pulled back up to the surface and cut into scrap iron in La Spezia by the end of the following year.

For more on Croatian maritime history, check out our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 21 November 2021

Brnjac Announces National Reforestation Project at EU Ministerial Meeting

ZAGREB, 21 Nov, 2021 - Addressing an informal online meeting of EU tourism ministers last Tuesday, Croatian Tourism and Sports Minister Nikolina Brnjac spoke about a new Croatian reforestation plan that is being launched by three ministries.

In line with the Paris Agreement, the EU has pledged to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 and of the numerous projects to be launched by the Croatian government, one of the first projects is related to tourism. A reforestation project for the period until 2030 is expected to result in the planting of around one million trees every year to compensate for a portion of the greenhouse gas emissions caused by tourists arriving by car, said Brnjac.

The reforestation project is being launched by the Tourism and Sports Ministry in cooperation with the ministries of economy and sustainable development and agriculture.

Brnjac also said that the making of a joint long-term plan of work of the EU must be accompanied by the availability of specific and continued EU funds for the sustainable development of tourism.

The informal meeting of EU tourism officials, held as part of the Slovenian presidency of the Council of the EU, focused on plans for activities and the adoption of a European Agenda for Tourism 2030-2050.

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

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 21 November 2021

HSU: Claim That Anti-Epidemic Rules Are Against Freedoms Is off the Point

ZAGREB, 21 Nov, 2021 - The Croatian Pensioners' Party (HSU) says the claims by anti-COVID certificate protesters on Saturday that the certificates allegedly restrict freedoms and rights are off the point and questionable, since it is the right to health that is affected when hospitals are overcrowded due to the pandemic.

Following Saturday's protest in Zagreb that brought together thousands of anti-vaxxers and protesters against COVID certificates from whole Croatia, the HSU stated on Sunday that the developments prompted it to respond publicly, without any wish to deepen divisions in the society.

"We must emphasise that one of the main reasons cited by the protesters for their demonstrations -- the restrictions of human rights and freedoms -- misses the point," says the party.

We would like to underscore that one disregards the fact about the restriction of the right of many to health, due to the epidemic, and this right is one of the fundamental human rights.

It is clear that living in an organised community such as a state includes also responsibilities alongside the exercise of many rights.

The freedom to public assembly is one of many benefits for those living in a democracy, however, many times public assemblies have political goals, the party added.

Instead of claiming that the anti-epidemic rules deny their rights and freedoms, it is better that individuals admit that they are simply afraid of vaccination.

The HSU went on to say that fear is "a normal human reaction" and one should only admit that.

The party also points out that some citizens do not get vaccinated out of fear and some out of egoism waiting for others' full vaccination to see what will happen.

It calls on the general public to follow the solutions found by the scientific community.

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

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