Saturday, 3 September 2022

Ukrainian Capital Market Reformists Seek Croatian Experience

September the 3rd, 2022 - The war in Ukraine is still raging on following the horrendous Russian invasion which began back in February this year. Hope, however, is still being found in this tragedy, and some Ukrainian capital market reformists are keen to hear the post-war Croatian experience of the late 90s and early 2000's.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ana Blaskovic writes, now having an official status of a candidate for membership in the European Union (EU), Ukraine is slowly starting to align its legal acquis with the common European one, despite the ongoing war. The country is roughly where Croatia was back in 2004 in this sense, although it is impossible to predict the political will in the European Union to truly open negotiations with Kiev. Regardless of the circumstances, Ukraine isn't wasting any time, and representatives of the Ukrainian capital market regulator, the National Securities and Exchange Commission, paid a study visit to the Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency (Hanfa) this week.

A technical exchange of knowledge

The visit of the two commissioners, Maksym Libanov and Yurii Boik, is a continuation of the technical cooperation started back in 2019, and the first topics on the table were UCITS and alternative investment funds. As part of the visit, an Agreement on technical cooperation between the two regulators was signed.

"We've been in contact with Hanfa for three years now, and since Ukraine received its status as a candidate member state of the EU, we decided to deepen cooperation with European regulators," Maksym Libanov, whose area of expertise covers corporate management, securities, depository, investments and pension funds, explained. With special permits to leave the country, they arrived in the City of Zagreb. "We were guided by the logic that the Croatian experience, as the youngest EU member state, is very important to us. At the moment, our talks cover the technical exchange of knowledge and experience in the process," said Libanov, adding that they also met with representatives of ZB Invest and Maverick Wealth Management.

Ukraine has been in a state of emergency since the Russian invasion began back at the end of February, and the UNHCR estimates that nearly seven million people have fled the country. Economic activity is practically devastated, trading on the Ukrainian Stock Exchange was halted on February the 24th (being relaunched only one month with restrictions), and financing depends on injections from the West. Before the war broke out, the Ukrainian economy relied on metallurgy, mining and ore processing in the east and southeast, the territory now under Russian occupation, from where devastating images of Mariupol, the Azovstal iron and steel works being turned into a shelter for civilians and the area of the last stronghold of the Ukrainian Army horrified the world.

Around a third of Ukraine's GDP was created by agriculture, leading to Ukraine often being called the world's breadbasket. Back in 2021, Libanov says, about 95 million tonnes of grain, such as wheat and sunflowers, were produced in Ukraine, two-thirds of which went to export markets. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, 16 percent of the world's corn production and more than 40 percent of sunflower oil come directly from Ukraine. Moldova alone, for example, gets more than 90 percent of its wheat from nearby Ukrainian fields. Russia's invasion, in addition to terrorising Ukrainian citizens and seeking to destroy the Ukrainian nationality, also disrupted the world's grain supply chains and sent food prices sky high.

Despite long-standing political tensions with Russia, the occupation of Crimea back in 2014 and the invasion of Ukraine in February, Ukraine struggled with accumulated economic and social problems. The grey economy, an extremely disordered market, a lot of corruption, the generally low living standards of workers which were even worse for pensioners - this series of events is very well known to other transition countries.

From about 42 to 44 million inhabitants, and this is an estimate because the last census was done in 2001, 20 million Ukrainians are of working age. Among them, only 13 million pay pension contributions, the rest are in the grey echelons of economic activity or outside the labour market, while there are also about 11 million pensioners. With these ratios of employees and dependents, the Ukrainian pension system and the labor market have always been very hot topics. This has especially been the case since the imagined pension system which would have had three pillars never came to fruition. The first pillar of generational solidarity is the only functional one, and the second should have been put into function 2023 if there had been no invasion and no war.

The third pillar, based on voluntary payments, had about 50 funds before the war broke out, but the total assets amounted to only around 150 billion euros, they say. "

This Ukrainian pension system is young and still developing. The average pension is around 2,800 hryvnias, so about 100 euros. The problem is that the average pension is very close to the minimum because many people don't have documentation about their work before 2004, and there's no central register," explained Libanov. His parents' situation reflects these disparities; the father's pension is about 3500 hryvnias, while the mother's is five times higher thanks to her working life spent at the Ukrainian Academy of Science. However, they add that this problem has been present for 30 years now and that a lot has been achieved through digitisation, but the consensus is that the reform of the pension system is an absolute necessity. Croatian experience, as the newest EU member state and a country which was at war just 30 years ago, is invaluable in this regard.

According to a survey conducted among company directors, as many as 39 percent have stopped doing business entirely since the beginning of the Russian invasion, and just 11 percent continued to do business as they did before or increased their activities, stated Yurii Boiko, commissioner for the area of ​​investments, communications and project management. He pointed out that, judging by that survey, we should praise how businesses are coping with the war, illustrating that about two-thirds of people are voluntarily involved in the fighting in some way.

"Undoubtedly, the war affected Ukrainian businesses and the way the economy works. There was a wave of layoffs and 1.28 million people lost their jobs in small and medium-sized companies," says Boiko.

With a surprising number of parallels that can be drawn between Croatia and Ukraine, we need to look at what reforms are the most desperately needed. Both Ukrainians said that judicial reforms are needed right now. They explained that a number of steps must be taken in the long term for the country to be competitive, attract capital and investors, build infrastructure, but everything is secondary to the functional rule of law. We know very well how true this is in Croatia, which still suffers tremendous problems in this sense to this very day.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated business and politics sections.

Friday, 2 September 2022

Nepalese Workers Come to Rescue Picking Apples in Croatia

September 2, 2022 - Croatian agriculture doesn’t choose hands to pick its fruits. The hourly wage is HRK 22, and local people find that to be too low. Nepalese workers to the rescue.

Glas Slavonije reports on the state of autumn pickings in Croatia. "If it weren’t for the Nepalese, we would have no apples. Yes, people whose home is 6,000 kilometers away are saving the day again. You remember that over the summer we regularly talked about restaurant owners struggling to find waiters and cooks. Because - for the money they offer, no one wants to work. Now the same problem has been reflected in orchards, vineyards, and soon also in olive groves. Hourly wages are too low, Croatian pickers are asking for more, and farmers can no longer offer that, so the solution arrives from Nepal. And pensioners also came to the rescue", Mojmira Pastorčić introduced the story in last night's RTL Direkt.

It's sweet, it’s crispy. In the past, Eva would not have to overthink, but nowadays - there is no one to pick apples.

In one of the largest Croatian orchards the tractors stand still. Baskets are empty. 6 thousand tons of fuji, breborn, jonagold, golden delicious, red cup, granny smith and gala are still waiting on the branches. The harvest was stopped by the weather, but in order for it to even begin, the director of this orchard had to start planning - on time, which means six months in advance. She has 30 workers, but she needs 300 for the harvest.

"We have about a hundred local people for whom we have provided transport to the orchard and 200 foreign workers who are partly from the region but mostly from Nepal, to whom we have provided all the adequate needs, including accommodation and food as well as bus transport to the orchard", said Ivona Tupek, director of Moslavina Fruit.

They are the ones who are rescuing the Croatian apple harvest second year in a row. They are in a former workers' hotel in Ivanić Grad. They have a day off because of the rain.

"We are from Nepal. We work here, in Moslavina. We pick apples. Everything is OK. We have been here for one month”, reports a Nepalese worker.

And they are staying until the end of the harvest. There is no other choice, no matter how complicated the procedure is for importing labor.

"These are complicated procedures as far as work permits and contracts are concerned, as well as entering Croatia and staying here, so unfortunately we are forced to rely on foreign labor, no matter how difficult it is to get them", said Tupek.

Each variety of apple has its own picking window, as fruit growers call it. It only lasts two weeks. If the apple is not picked at that time - it will end up in the waste.

The average seasonal worker in this orchard picks 800 kilograms of apples in eight hours, but there are also those who pick twice as much at the same time.

The difference is often due to age. Unlike young Nepalese, the domestic labor force is mostly made up of retirees.

"As a rule, the current seasonal workforce in orchards is an older population, where we come to a new problem, which is the efficiency and quality of the workforce itself. Usually, you will be happy to get an employee at the expense of the quality and productivity they can provide during the harvest”, said Luka Cvitan from the Association of Apple Producers.

"And the neighbors come over when you need help. We can still do that a bit”, said Štefica, a market seller and farmer. She adds, "you don't have to pay your neighbors. When you need each other, it's always good to jump in and help each other”.

In some places, it’s the neighbours who step in and help for free, and in other places, it’s the Nepalese.

For more, make sure to check out our Lifestyle section.

Friday, 2 September 2022

Croatia Tops Greece for Spot in European Championship Quarterfinals!

September 2, 2022 - Croatia and Greece draw 5:5 in Split on Friday, a result that brought Croatia first place in Group B and a spot in the European Championship quarterfinals! 

The Croatia men's water polo team played their last match in Group B at the European Championships in Split on Friday. Croatia and Greece met in the final group game, which was also the game for first place - the spot leading directly to the quarterfinals. 

The Croatia women's team already secured a historic quarterfinal on Tuesday, and after the men's side's opening win against Malta, they defeated France 13:7 on Wednesday. 

The Croatia men's side entered tonight's match with great optimism as a draw was enough for them to win the group. 

Losing, however, would give Croatia second place in Group B, which meant playing in the round of 16 on Sunday against the third-placed team from Group D.

Recall that Greece and France drew 12:12 on Monday. 

Match report

1st Quarter

Croatia won the swim-off and the first attack of the match. Biljaka hit the post. Bijac saved Greece's first attack. Vrlic tried backhanding into the goal in the next attack, but the Greece keeper punched it out for Croatia's ball. Kharkov's attempt was saved in the same play. But Greece couldn't store either with Bijac in goal. The first four minutes of the match didn't see a goal. Greece was the first to score with 3:40 on the clock for 1:0. Fatovic hit over the post with just over 3 minutes to go. Bijac kept Greece from increasing their lead. With 32 seconds to go in the first quarter - Greece made it 2:0, which is how the first quarter ended.

2nd Quarter 

Croatia won the swim-off of the second quarter as well. Kragic hit the post in Croatia's first attack. Another chance for Croatia also just missed the goal. Bijac continued to be brilliant in goal with save after save, but Greece's keeper also denied Croatia from seeing the back of the net. Kragic hit the post again with 4 and a half minutes left. Bijac was unstoppable, but Greece's defense was the same to protect theirs. Another shot for Croatia - another miss. With 1:58 to go, Croatia had a corner without any luck. Another great defensive play with a minute to go kept Greece ahead by only two goals. The match was 2:0 for Greece going into halftime. 

3rd Quarter 

Croatia won the swim-off to start the third quarter but could not get a shot off. Croatia denied Greece's first attack, too. Zuvela finally scored Croatia's first goal with 6:28 on the clock - it was 2:1.  And Josip. Vrlic scored a screamer for the equalizer - it was 2:2 with 5:22 left! Bijac brilliantly defended before Greece found a way back ahead for 3:2 with 3:15 left. Kharkov equalized with 2:35 left for 3:3! Greece hit the post in the next play with just over a minute on the clock. Kragic tried shooting from far out, which was played for a corner. Greece called for a time-out with the attack and 15 seconds to go in the quarter. Croatia called for a time-out after a Greece goal was called back. It was 3:3 going into the final quarter. 

4th Quarter

Croatia won the final swim-off of the match, and Kragic nailed the back of the net for the Croatia lead! It was 3:4 or Croatia. Bijac, yet again, saved the day in Greece's first three attacks to keep Croatia ahead. Greece hit the post with 4:52 on the clock and Bijac defended again. Greece equalized at 4:4 with 4:29 to go. Greece score for 5:4 and the lead again with 3:36 left. Rino Buric answered back for 5:5 with 2:52 on the clock. Bijac saved Greece's attack and Croatia missed in their next attack. Greece had the ball with a minute to go. But Bijac, being Bijac, let nothing go past him. The match ended at 5:5 for Croatia! 

This result means that Croatia takes first place in Group B and secures a spot in the European Championship quarterfinals! Croatia plays the winner of the ranking game 4 on Tuesday at 16:30.  

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 2 September 2022

Vinkovci Business Incubator Exceeds All Expectations

September 2, 2022 - Since its opening two and a half years ago, in February 2020, the Vinkovci Business Incubator has met, and, it is safe to say, exceeded all expectations and predictions - all capacities have been completely full for a long time, and only in the past year 22 companies with 63 employees were located in that area, while more than 160 entrepreneurs participated in organised workshops and round tables with the aim of increasing their entrepreneurial knowledge and skills.

As Glas Slavonije writes, wanting to be informed about their business plans and to get first-hand information and hear suggestions on how to further improve their relationship with the Business Incubator, Mayor Ivan Bosančić visited the tenants and on that occasion pointed out that the Business Incubator was one of the first major projects of his team, to which he especially proud.

"I am proud of my team that we managed to implement such a demanding project, worth HRK 21 million, with a minimal correction of only five percent, which means that in the end we obtained grants in the amount of HRK 20 million. The most important of all is the fact that today the Business Incubator is completely filled with tenants from different business spheres, from the IT sector, design, production to hospitality. Most of them have increasing needs and are constantly looking for additional workers", said Mayor Bosančić.

All of them, he said, have the support of the City in their efforts to improve and advance their businesses, especially when it comes to new projects and new employment.

As a reminder, the Vinkovci Business Incubator has an area of ​​1,861 square meters, consisting of 5 production and 13 office business spaces, an administrative part of the building, a conference hall of 100 square meters and a multi-purpose hall with the possibility of partitions, also with a total area of ​​100 square meters, as well as a co-working space and a canteen. In addition to space, the Business Incubator also provides tenants with business equipment and provides support through business consulting, education, connections, presentations, promotion and visibility in the initial and most critical stages of the development of their companies. All these tools are key to increasing the number of companies that survive on the market and encouraging their growth and development, as well as creating new jobs.

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

Friday, 2 September 2022

Media in Time Festival in Vinkovci to Award Best Local Journalists

September 2, 2022 - The 3rd Media In Time journalism festival organised by the Center for Media Culture in Vinkovci is starting today with a panel discussion on the topic "Small" media, big topics".

As Press 032 reports, the festival in Vinkovci will carry a central theme dedicated to local journalism and the doubts and problems that exist in the local media when opening of certain topics, from problems with sources to attempts at political and other pressures and distractions, which sometimes come from their own employer and editorial staff.

The central part of this year's Media In Time festival will be the awarding of the Croatian Journalists' Association (HND) awards for the best local journalistic works, which bear the names of two exceptional Croatian journalists, Anđelko Erceg and Siniša Glavašević, and the Media In Time journalism festival will be the permanent venue for their awards in of the future.

These are the newly established awards of the Croatian Journalists' Association, which are intended to recognise journalists who self-sacrificingly and professionally do their journalistic work in local media, and who know how to remain in the shadow of their colleagues who deal with topics of national importance. It can be pointed out that the laureates are journalists from Dubrovnik to Vukovar. The award ceremony in the lapidary of the Vinkovci City Museum will be broadcast live on HND's Facebook and YouTube pages.

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HND

After awarding the award for the best local journalistic works, the opening ceremony of the exhibition "Franjo Fuis: from comics to theatre and film and back" by Veljko Krulčić will follow, which will be staged in the gallery of the City Theater of Jotza Ivakić as part of the collaboration between the Media In Time festival and Fra Ma Fu festival of Reporting and Reporters of Virovitica and Daruvar.

HND adds that on the second day of the festival, September 3, the program continues in Vukovar with a lecture by communication and media expert Tomislav Levak, a lecturer at the Academy of Arts and Culture of the Josip Juraj Strossmayer University from Osijek on the topic "How and why is misinformation and fake news produced and spread?". The panel discussion "Fake news – how to fight it" will follow, which will be opened with a presentation by a young computer scientist from Vinkovci, David Buday, an expert in OSINT (open source data), on finding information from publicly available sources.

In addition to Croatian journalists, the participants of the 3rd Media In Time festival will also be the president of the European Federation of Journalists and the Union of Croatian Journalists, Maja Sever, and the president of the Croatian Journalists' Association, Hrvoje Zovko, fellow journalists from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, as well as students from the Department of Culture, media and management of the Academy of Arts and Culture of the University of Josip Juraj Strossmayer from Osijek, with which the Center for Media Culture recently signed a cooperation agreement.

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

Friday, 2 September 2022

Vinodol Municipality Tourism Experiences Surprising Post-Pandemic Boom

September the 2nd, 2022 - The Vinodol municipality, which was neither here nor there in terms of Croatian tourism when compared to many other coastal destinations, has made quite a name for itself this year.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, up until relatively recently, the Vinodol municipality was almost anonymous in terms of tourism, but it has experienced quite the tourism boom this year, with almost 20 percent better results than the pre-pandemic, record year of 2019.

Rural holiday homes that experienced a real tourist boom in the two pandemic-dominated years are still being especially sought after, and when he heard about the villas of the Vinodol municipality, Englishman John decided to take a risk by paying the areas a visit, and he didn't regret it. He was left speechless when seeing the area's natural beauty, and the high criteria of the accommodation he wanted for his family were also met with no issues, writes HRT.

"The whole house was so luxurious, five rooms with bathrooms, a beautiful pool, what can I say, I can't imagine a better place. Bribir is a quiet town and the people are so kind," said this tourist from England enthusiastically.

Indoor and outdoor swimming pools, jacuzzis, saunas, taverns, gardens, luxury spaces and, in case of business needs, a conference hall and a helipad are available. ''Guests are more than willing to pay, there is no problem for them when it comes to paying, you just have to actually provide what the guest is asking for, and not take their money and send them home," pointed out Vlado Lancic, the owner of a rural holiday home in Bribir.

This is precisely the Vinodol municipality tourism vision. For years, what was considered a disadvantage of this destination, which is the distance from the coastline, which is mostly more than five kilometres, is actually an advantage in this type of rural tourism. Thanks to a well-thought-out tourism offer that offers hunting trips in the surrounding forests, fishing on Lake Tribalj, hiking, hang-gliding, cycling, and the chance to enjoy the charms of the sparkling Adriatic Sea just a few minutes' drive away - there are no free beds.

"The whole area is just beautiful, but what delights us and what we need is peace. A holiday spent in a green valley at the foot of the mountains, with a divine view of the sea," stated Christian, a tourist from Germany.

"This is absolute relaxation for people, people absolutely adore the peace and quiet here, I think that's what suits them the most," believes Gordana Vlastelic, another owner of a holiday home in Bribir.

Gordana started out working in tourism with one house, and now she rents three of them out. In the Vinodol municipality, more than 300 luxuriously furnished villas of this type are available for rent, which are occupied more than 120 days a year.

"People invest a lot and buy a lot of properties in the Vinodol municipality, most of them try to renovate these old rural houses in the same way and condition as they found them,'' explained Alenka Spoja, director of the Tourist Board of the Vinodol municipality.

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

Friday, 2 September 2022

Croatian Olive Growers Say Olive Oil Prices Will Increase Significantly

September the 2nd, 2022 - Croatian olive growers have warned that there will be higher prices to pay for olive oil this year, much like there are higher prices to pay for just about everything else.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, this summer's harsh drought also affected olive groves and as such Croatian olive growers who rely entirely on the climate for the success of their crop. There will be problems with the olive crop, and if it still doesn't rain significantly until the harvest season, the fruit will remain small, so Croatian olive growers will get less oil, which could see the end product reach a price of 150 kuna per litre, as reported by N1.

"We're producers of organic olive oil and we produce our oil from three varieties of olives. We have monovarieties of olives, olives and levantines and we also preserve the olives,'' explained Ivan Vicenco, the owner of a family farm (OPG).

Although the lack of precipitation is usually somewhat of an ally for olives, the long-term drought has still left its mark. The fruits are smaller and if they don't manage to swell enough by the time picking is due, the result is naturally less oil.

"Our fruits are somewhat dried out, but they're slowly coming back to life after the rain we had the day before yesterday, and in a way we're now counting down the last month until harvest," added Vicenco. What the harvest will look like also depends on the area where the olive grove is located. Those in rugged areas will suffer the greatest losses.

The president of the Cooperative Association of Dalmatia, Lordan Ljubenkov, says: "We're receiving reports that the olive trees have shriveled up due to the long drought, and where there isn't enough soil to retain the moisture, the olives have already started to fall off, with the trees also suffering some damage. Even where there is soil in the olive groves, in another two weeks, those olive groves will lose their fruit as well,"

Because of that, but also owing to the increase in the price of materials and inflation, every drop that Croatian olive growers produce will become precious. A price increase of 20 to 30 percent is unfortunately expected.

"Croatian olive producers will not see their actual work become more expensive, but the packaging will cost more, as will fuel, transport and the means of protecting the olives themselves. Everything about olive oil and the efforts put into the process by Croatian olive growers will become more expensive, and at the same time the final product, extra virgin olive oil, will also cost more," explained Ljubenkov in an interview for N1.

Vicenco, however, has said he refuses to raise prices, believing that some people have adapted too much to relying solely tourism and have made their product more expensive for no reason whatsoever.

"On the other hand, they forget that there are people around us who use olive oil, who are also our fellow citizens and who will be here even after the tourists leave. Perhaps solidarity should come into it and they should try to be a bit more realistic. In my opinion, a price above 130 kuna for a litre of oil is a kind of robbery," said Vicenco.

In the main Split market, prices range from 80 to 100 kuna, depending on the type of packaging used for the oil. In addition to oil, native seedlings can also be purchased.

"Since I'm a producer, I will try to raise my prices as little as possible, but at the end of the day everything depends on the crop. There's been a drought, the harvest looks good, but the fruit is small, there's been no rain, and everything depends on the rain,'' said Josip Ercegovic from Rogoznica. The biggest concern for Croatian olive growers this season is not the crop, but how much oil they will bring to the market due to the drought.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Made in Croatia section.

Friday, 2 September 2022

Croatian Pension Funds Give Green Light to Jadran for Brac Hotel Purchase

September the 2nd, 2022 - The extraordinary assembly of the Crikvenica hotel group Jadran, which is backed by the Croatian pension funds PBZ/CO and Erste Plavi, gave the green light to the Management Board for the purchase of the Grand Hotel View in Postira on the island of Brac worth 47.1 million euros, equal to about 355 million kuna.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ana Blaskovic writes, back on June the 1st of this year, Jadran took over the management of the controversial Postira hotel, which filled the newspaper columns while it was still under construction due to its size and the fact that it wasn't remotely in keeping with anything near it. It was then announced that by the end of the year, the contracting parties would agree on the terms of further business cooperation.

With the acquisition of a 100 percent share, Jadran now has 19 business entities in its portfolio, all of which are partly owned and partly managed. There are more than 2,000 accommodation units in hotels and resorts and over 1,300 pitches in camps. Although the stock market announcement of the purchase of the controversial Postira hotel aroused public interest, and not in a good way, the aforementioned Croatian pension funds didn't want to reveal the motives for the takeover.

They announced on Wednesday that with the new purchase of the business, they have successfully expanded to the islands of Central Dalmatia in addition to the Crikvenica-Vinodol and Makarska riviera, since five years ago the company was taken over by the Croatian pension funds PBZ Croatia osiguranje/insurance and Erste Plavi, who provided financial support.

"By purchasing Grand Hotel View, we've strengthened our ownership portfolio with another super modern, high-class facility in a beautiful location on the island of Brac, which contributes to a significant increase in our tourist offer and income, as well as our overall business results," said Jadran board member Ivan Safundzic, adding that the acquisition "directly contributes to the realisation of the national tourism development strategy across Croatia by increasing capacities in high-class hotel accommodation units".

Jadran assures that since the opening of the controversial Postira hotel, it has been extremely well occupied, with reservations looking good up until the end of the main season, as well as announcements for the post-season, and "extremely successful business results" are expected. It seems that, however, the Croatian pension funds would have to step in with an additional financial injection to Jadran given that, according to the media, the losses carried forward amount to 233 million kuna, and the group's total liabilities amount to a massive 455 million kuna in total.

The hotel on the site of the former sardine fish processing factory in Postira otherwise boasts 230 rooms and suites, swimming pools, wellness and spa and a congress hall on five above-ground floors with a garage. The main designer was Ivana Uroda with the architectural team of Ana Tomsic, Hrvoje Marinovic and Daniela Vugrinovic. At the end of the tourist season, work should begin on the doing up of the hotel's very own beach, which should, as has announced, increase the value and quality of the hotel's overall offer and be reflected in the development of Postira and the island of Brac as a whole with the creation of new jobs for the local population.

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

Friday, 2 September 2022

Third of Croatian Employees Have Never Had a Pay Rise

September the 2nd, 2022 - It's hardly a secret that the Croatian economy isn't known for being a booming one where employers fight over would-be staff with pay rise after pay rise, but it is jarring to learn that an entire third of Croatian employees have never received a pay rise.

Giving a pay rise to your employees is one way to show not only your appreciation of their efforts and choice to remain with you and your company, but to further build the confidence and loyalty of your employees, and as Poslovni Dnevnik writes, despite spiralling inflation and the worries surrounding the energy crisis, only one in three Croatian employees can actually expect a raise by the end of this year.

Inflation is ongoing and as a result, the prices of just about everything imaginable have been running wild. It is making the cap between rich and poor even wider, and now more and more people are at risk of poverty than before. To add insult to injury, as analysed by the MojaPlaca (MyWages) service, Croatian wages have only grown by a very pitiful four percent when compared to last year.

Just over a quarter of Croatian employees (28 percent of them) received a raise earlier this year, while 23 percent of them received a raise for the last time back in 2021. It is worrying that a third of Croatian employees (30 percent of them) have never received a raise, despite the fact that many have been with their employers for a long time.

The amount of the average raise in the Republic of Croatia is 8 percent of a peron's salary, or 645 kuna on average. 36 percent of respondents expect a raise by the end of the year, a quarter of respondents (25 percent) don't yet know if they can expect a raise, while 34 percent don't expect a salary increase of any level at all.

When asked by what criteria raises are received/distributed in the company where they work, the majority of Croatian employees (58 percent of them) stated that it isn't remotely clearly defined when and to whom raises are given.

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

Thursday, 1 September 2022

Festivals in September to Look Forward to in Croatia

September 1, 2022 - Autumn in Croatia is possibly the most beautiful time of the year. The air begins to cool down, leaves begin to turn brown, life returns from the beaches to the streets. One of the bast parts is the festivals in September that take place all over Croatia, from Ilok to Dubrovnik.

Journal lists seven out of many festivals worth visiting. These events will take us on a cultural journey along and across Croatia. 

Split Film Festival

The International New Film Festival will be held in Split from September 1 to 9, 2022. After last year's 'online edition', this year we will have the opportunity to watch films live again in the Karaman cinema. The twenty-seventh edition of the festival will once again show films in the feature and short international competition. The audience will have the opportunity to get to know the new films in the Croatian program, and a detailed overview of all screenings is available here.

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Milan Sabic / Pixsell

Dimensions Festival

On Thursday, the jubilee 10th edition of the Dimensions Festival starts, with which we traditionally say goodbye to the summer at The Garden resort in Tisno. The famous electronic music festival takes place from September 1 to 5, and for its jubilee, a real treat of a line-up is coming. You can check it out at this link.

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Dusko Marusic / Pixsell

Ogulin Fairytale Festival

This traditional cultural and tourist event will from September 9 to 11 make Ogulin a center of entertainment, good mood, fairy-tale creativity and a cultural program for children, youth and adults. This is an ideal opportunity for the whole family to spend quality time together and go to some of the festival scenes around the city with appropriate names - Regoč, Đulin vrt, Neva Nevičica, Stribor, Potjeh, Kosjenka and Domaći (characters from the fairytales of famous Croatian author Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić). The detailed program of the festival can be found here.

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Ogulinski Festival Bajke

Four River Film Festival

Karlovac will host the 15th edition of the Four River Film Festival from September 6 to 10. It is an international festival intended for high school films. Along with it, the 27th Youth Film Festival will take place, which will feature works created by young people aged 14 to 20. The festival program can be found here.

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Kristina Stedul Fabac

Vinkovačke Jeseni (Autumn in Vinkovci)

September also brings the 57th edition of Vinkovačke Jeseni. Our tradition will shine in full glory from September 9 to 18, when the sounds of the tamburica will resound in Vinkovci, and the gathered guests will have the opportunity to see what lies beneath the golden Slavonian sun in early autumn. Detailed information about the event celebrating traditional culture is available here.

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Dubravka Petric / Pixsell

Goulash Disko

From September 14 to 18, the island of Vis will host a special music festival - Goulash Disco. It is a festival that gathers artists who can be classified under the heading of underground music. In the description of the festival, it is pointed out that it combines "positive music, virgin nature and collective incredibleness". You can check the program of this year's edition of the festival here.

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Zeljko Lukunic / Pixsell

International Puppet Theater Festival – PIF

The impressive 55th edition of the International Puppet Theater Festival will be held in Zagreb from September 16 to 22. During the seven days of the festival, we will have the opportunity to enjoy twenty professional and amateur puppet theaters and troupes, which perform shows for children and adults. The entire program of the oldest and largest international puppet theater festival in Croatia is available here.

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PIF

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