Friday, 26 November 2021

Digitalising Agriculture Key to Increasing Productivity

ZAGREB, 26 Nov 2021 - Digitalisation is the key to increasing productivity in agriculture and the driver of developing domestic production, an analysis by the Smarter consulting company said on Friday, noting that digital technology can help farmers to work more precisely, efficiently and sustainably and increase productivity.

"In Croatia, less than 10% of farmers use digital systems to manage production. In developed countries that share is far higher - almost 40%...and about 30% use information technology and keep their records using digital tools," Smarter said in the analysis.

It recalled that in addition to EU funds, Croatia has the opportunity to invest in digitalisation through the NextGeneration EU instrument and the National Recovery and Resilience Programme, which has ensured about HRK 77 million for digital transformation in agriculture.

Of that amount, HRK 14 million is earmarked for the establishment of digital public services, HRK 50 million for smart agriculture and HRK 13 million for traceability, which can significantly contribute to the wider use of digital technology in agriculture.

Digitalisation can help Croatian producers to improve decision-making and increase ecological efficiency, which is a must based on the EU green deal.

Smarter recalled that the COVID pandemic has impacted the application of new technological solutions and a large number of farmers organised their own digital platforms to promote and sell their products. This, however, is insufficient as users do not have sufficient experience in using digital tools.

In Croatia, digitalisation is present in large companies and among young people who are continually introducing new technology and are achieving European results in yields and productivity. However, in Croatia, most farmers are older and are poorly educated and IT literate.

The best solution would be for all agricultural producers, regardless of their size, to use a national IT platform that would ensure the introduction of digital management of production that would be open to every farmer in addition to the existing commercial systems.

Such a platform would also enable the ministry to have insight into and plan and monitor production, while producers would be provided with the best practices in their sector.

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Friday, 26 November 2021

Croatia Bans Arrivals of Foreigners from Southern African Countries

ZAGREB, 26 Nov 2021 - Croatia's COVID-19 crisis management team decided to impose a 14-day quarantine and mandatory testing for Croats returning from South Africa, Botswana, Lesoto, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Congo, and to ban arrivals of foreigners from those countries, Interior Minister Davor Božinović said on Friday.

The ban and restrictions are in line with the European Commission's recommendations to all European Union member states following the appearance of a new variant of coronavirus in South Africa.

Brussels is mulling EU-wide flight restrictions due to concerns over the new COVID-19 variant.

The head of Zagreb's Infectious Diseases Hospital, Alemka Markotić, informed the news conference about studies showing that the new variant had not yet been detected outside Africa.

The head of the Croatian Institute of Public Health (HZJZ), Krunoslav Capak, said that it was still to early to predict the rate of the spread of that variant of the virus, having in mind the fact that the vaccination rate in southern African regions is below 10%.

Božinović told the news conference that European Union member states have to date issued 650 million COVID certificates, and currently talks are being conducted on the period of the certificate's validity after full vaccination.

The European Commission on Thursday updated its rules on the validity of EU Digital COVID Certificates for a period of 9 months since the primary vaccination series. The Commission presented draft recommendations for safe and free movement in the EU which should take effect as of 10 January next year.

Capak: The vaccinated transmit the virus to a lesser extent

Capak warned about misinterpretations of scientific papers concerning the COVID-19 pandemic.

If one reads a scientific paper, they should also be able to interpret it correctly. A vaccinated individual can contract the virus and develop symptoms, however, the vaccinated get sick to a much lesser extent. It has been also proven that the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 in their nose quickly lessens, Capak said, adding that vaccines provide a high level of protection against serious illness and death.

Also, the instances of the virus breaking into healthcare institutions are rarer now than in the first waves before the vaccination rollout.

For more news on travel, CLICK HERE.

Friday, 26 November 2021

EC Proposes Ban on Unvaccinated Travelers Entering the European Union

November 26, 2021 - In addition to the extension of the validity time of digital COVID certificates, the European Commission is proposing to EU member countries a ban on unvaccinated travelers in case they wish to enter the European Union, in addition to other possible measures to guarantee safe freedom of movement in the territory.

Yesterday, the European Commission announced a proposal according to which all members of the European Union would allow only vaccinated, recovered, or necessary travelers to enter, reports HrTurizam. In light of the expected progress in vaccination campaigns around the world, the Commission, from 1 March 2022, proposes a simplified approach, which depends entirely on the status of the passenger and not on the country of departure.

In addition, visitors entering one of the EU countries will have to prove that they were vaccinated no more than nine months ago. Namely, the Commission proposes a standard acceptance period of nine months for vaccination certificates issued after the end of the primary vaccination series. The nine-month period takes into account the guidelines of the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on the use of six-month doses and provides for an additional period of three months.

Those who have recovered from COVID-19 within 180 days before the trip and have either an EU digital COVID certificate or a certificate considered equivalent, should also be able to travel to the European Union from 10 January 2022.

The revised rules clarify that children between the ages of 6 and 17 should be able to travel to the EU with a negative PCR test done before departure even if they have not been vaccinated. Member States could require additional post-arrival testing, quarantine, or self-isolation. Test and vaccination are not required for children under 6 years of age.

The Council's recommendation covers all Member States (except Ireland), as well as the four non-EU countries that have acceded to the Schengen area: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

Coordinated approach for safer travel

“Based on our common tool, the EU digital COVID certification, which has become a true standard, we are moving to a person-based approach. Our main goal is to avoid different measures throughout the EU. This also applies to the issue of boosters, which will be essential to fight the virus. Among other measures, we propose that the Council harmonize the standard validity period of vaccination certificates issued after the primary batch,” said Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders.

“EU digital COVID certification and our coordinated approach to travel measures have greatly contributed to safe free movement, with the protection of public health as our priority. We have vaccinated over 65% of the total EU population, but that is not enough. There are still too many people who are not protected. In order for everyone to travel and live as safely as possible, we urgently need to achieve significantly higher vaccination rates,” added Health and Food Safety Commissioner Stella Kyriakides.

What the European Commission proposes:

  • Focus on the “person-based approach”: a person holding a valid EU digital COVID certificate should in principle not be subject to additional restrictions, such as tests or quarantine, regardless of where you leave the EU. Persons without an EU digital COVID certificate could be required to undergo testing before or after arrival.
  • Standard validity of vaccination certificates: to avoid different approaches. The Commission proposes a standard acceptance period of nine months for vaccination certificates issued after the end of the primary vaccination series.
  • Additional (booster) vaccination: for now there are no studies that specifically dealt with the efficiency boosters to transfer COVID-19 and is therefore not possible to determine the period of acceptance for them. However, given the new data, it can be expected that protection against supplementary vaccination may last longer than that resulting from the primary vaccination series.
  • The EU traffic-light map has been adapted: combining new cases with the use of vaccines in the region. The map would mainly serve for information purposes, but would also serve to coordinate measures for areas with particularly low, green, or particularly high, dark red levels of virus circulation. Special rules would apply to these areas, derogating from the "person-based approach". No restrictions should apply to travelers from "green" areas.
  • Exemptions from certain travel measures should apply to cross-border travelers, children under the age of 12, and emergency travelers. The list of necessary passengers should be reduced as many who were included in the current list have meanwhile had the opportunity to be vaccinated.
  • Simplified “emergency braking” procedurean urgent procedure designed to delay the spread of possible new variants of COVID-19 or to address particularly serious situations should be simplified and more operational.

In order to allow sufficient time for the implementation of the coordinated approach, the Commission proposes that the innovations be applied from 10 January 2022.

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

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and select your preferred language.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Croatia Reports 5,460 New Coronavirus Cases, 75 Deaths

ZAGREB, 26 Nov 2021 - Croatia has registered 5,460 new coronavirus cases and 75 COVID-related deaths in the last 24 hours, the national coronavirus response team reported on Friday, noting that 60 of the people who died were not vaccinated.

The number of deaths in the last 24 hours is the highest in the fourth wave of the epidemic, while since the start of the epidemic the largest number of deaths in a single day was recorded on 16 December 2020, when 92 people died.

Currently, there are 34,731 active cases in the country. Of these, 2,496 infected people are being treated in hospitals, including 325 who are on ventilators. A total of 27,732 persons are self-isolating.

Since 25 February 2020, when the first case was confirmed in Croatia, 594,475 people have been registered as having contracted the novel virus, of whom 10,644 have died and 549,100 have recovered, including 5,607 in the last 24 hours.

To date, 3,411,379 people have been tested for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, including 13,771 in the last 24 hours.

As of Thursday, 4,073,744 doses of vaccine have been administered, with 53.26 percent of the total population, or 63.57 percent of the adult population, having been vaccinated.

To date, 2,161,370 people have received at least one dose of vaccine, of whom 1,918,691 have been fully vaccinated, which is 56.68 percent of the adult population.

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

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and select your preferred language.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Australia-based and Croatia-born ŽIVA Blends Slavic Heritage with Modern Sounds

November 26, 2021 - ŽIVA, a new solo project by an Australia-based singer-songwriter Lucija Ivšić, presents her first single “Power”. 

Lucija is already known in the music world as the frontwoman of one of the most successful Croatian rock bands Punčke. After relocating to Australia, the new project was born in her new home of Melbourne during the longest pandemic lockdown, and it went through many iterations to be finally set as ŽIVA.


Building upon her heritage from the Croatian region of Slavonija, ŽIVA aims to blend modern sounds with the ones reflecting her hometown Vinkovci and the culture she grew up with, while the name itself translates as “being alive” and is an homage to the Slavic goddess of life.

As ŽIVA, Lucija channels her experiences and self-expression through a very different sonic realm to what could be heard in her previous band Punčke. Equipped with only a small audio interface, microphone, and laptop, ŽIVA embodies stepping out of the comfort zone and continues to push the boundaries by combining elements of Slavic-pop, trip-hop, alternative R&B, darkwave, and electronic music.

Although quite different from Punčke, energetic performance and dark, honest lyricism is still present in abundance. As Lucija says herself about her new music as ŽIVA: “Power is the intro to my journey of self-discovery, identity rebirth, and getting to know self-love.”


Photo by Jess Brohier

“Power” was written, produced, and recorded in Lucija’s Melbourne home studio in September 2021 with the constant support of Anja Tkalec, Punčke bass player, and an emerging sound producer. Mixing was done by John Foyle, a renowned London-based electronic music producer who worked with artists such as Ibeyi, while mastering was signed by Dajman Blažun, a Croatian-born producer residing in Berlin. The lyric video was done by Martin Peranović.

The new song is also announcing an upcoming EP set to be released next year. “Power” is self-released through the label Cereal Booking and available on all streaming platforms.

For more information, follow ŽIVA on Instagram / Facebook 

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

Friday, 26 November 2021

Coronavirus Update: National Civil Protection Helds Press Conference

November 26, 2021 - Today, the National Civil Protection offered a coronavirus update through a press conference in which they commented on the latest related to COVID-19 in the country, from the number of infected in the last 24 hours, the COVID certificates, the tests, and the variant discovered in South Africa.

As reported by, the National Civil Protection Headquarters held a press conference at which new data on the situation with coronavirus in Croatia and the world were presented. The conference was delayed by about 15 minutes. First, data on newly infected people were presented, so it was said that today we have 5,460 new cases, and 75 people have died. "Among the dead are 14 vaccinated, one with three doses and one partially," it was said.

Krunoslav Capak presented data on those infected on this day two weeks ago. "We have 10 percent more new cases this week than last. The incidence average is 1619.17. The share of positives in those tested today is 39.6%. In the last seven days, 40.1% and since the beginning 17.4%", he said.

Speaking about the dead, Capak said that out of 75 dead, 60 were not vaccinated with any dose, and 61 did not complete the vaccination in total. “Of the 37 deceased, over the age of 80, 34 were not vaccinated, or 92 percent. In the last 24 hours, 34 people were put on a respirator, 26 of whom were not vaccinated,", he added.

Božinović talks about COVID recommendations

Davor Božinović announced a special decision on border restrictions with regard to the new variant of the virus, as well as that a recommendation from the level of the European Commission will follow. “This applies to people coming from South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, and Hong Kong,” he said. He said that entering Croatia from those countries would either be banned or that our people coming from them would have to be quarantined for 14 days, and stressed that the new detected strain has the potential to be more contagious than the delta.

Božinović continued to talk about COVID certificates. Yesterday, the European Commission proposed that certificates after vaccination should last for nine months, and Božinović said that we currently apply 12 months after the booster dose because it is not known how long the immunity will last. The ECDC also announced yesterday that new guidelines are being worked on for COVID certificates, which would also look at the percentage of those vaccinated with regard to those infected.

What about those who got over it and got vaccinated

Journalists asked when it would be decided on the COVID certificates, to which he said it would likely be mid-December. He also confirmed that for all those who have COVID certificates valid for one year, there will be a period for receiving a booster dose.

Some new decisions for Advent are not currently being considered, he confirmed, because it is an outdoor event after all. The journalists also asked what happened to the people who got sick and got vaccinated, what happened to their confirmations. "If someone is vaccinated with two doses after recovering, it is counted as if he received three doses and he is issued aCOVID certificate for one year. "I don't know what the EU practice will be, but we will, if it is mandatory, harmonize with the EU," he said.

Markotić explained the new strain

Alemka Markotić answered questions about the new strain, according to which it is a danger considering the measures that are being introduced and how it affects the vaccine. "Several cases have occurred in several countries, it is known that there are more than thirty different mutations at the spike protein level and that is why all countries are concerned, and the WHO is preparing certain meetings to discuss what this could mean. This large number of mutations, especially on the spike protein, can affect its binding to receptors or the effectiveness of the vaccine'', she said.

Markotić indicated that everything should be examined quickly. "All measures will certainly be taken to obtain results, at least in laboratory conditions. It is good that there are not many cases outside Africa or in Africa itself,” concluding that she hoped to learn more about the virus in the coming weeks.

Capak: 'We only had seven cases of delta plus'

Capak first said that so far we have had only seven cases of delta plus variants and that it does not have a great potential for spread, and for the latest strain he said they could mean that it could have a much higher potential for spread.

"The question is how it will spread from South Africa to countries with more vaccination, the fact that it broke into Hong Kong does not mean that it will be the same in other countries," he said, adding that the best protection is entry bans for foreign nationals from those countries and 14 days of quarantine for our citizens with testing prior departure.

Long debate on amendments to the Act

The journalists also asked about the amendments to the Law, which is in public consultation, and which contains an article according to which the sanitary inspector could order vaccination of persons exposed to the virus. They asked how it was, and they did not receive a concrete answer from the Headquarters, Božinović only said that the law was in consultation and that everything would be analyzed.

When asked to further clarify this, he replied: "We are dealing with other, more urgent aspects, I did not participate in the amendments to the law." Asked if it is not unbelievable that they do not know what is written in the amendments to the Law, Božinović said that he would get an answer to that question during the day. “We can’t give you an answer to that question,” he said, adding that he would clarify that later.

Božinović and Beroš managed to clarify everything

Somewhat later, Božinović returned to this issue, saying that the issue was not clearly formulated, so he explains that two points were added to the Law. "My colleague received an answer in the meantime, it says that I can order the implementation of the security measure of the obligation to present evidence, which means that you have to show COVID confirmation that you have been tested, vaccinated, or recovered. We can also order the removal of people who have entered certain areas", he said.

“If you had seen what I read now, you would have seen that it relates to the obligation to present evidence,” he said. The floor is taken by Minister Vili Beroš, who says that the journalist is commenting on an earlier article that already exists in the Law. "It is not at all a tendency for a sanitary inspector to order someone to be vaccinated. This article exists when a sanitary inspector can order it for hepatitis for example. But, as there is no obligation to vaccinate, no one will be able to order compulsory vaccination to anyone", said Beroš, adding that he thinks that everything has been explained.

Božinović concluded that no one plans to introduce a coronavirus vaccination obligation. The journalists were also interested in whether they were considering changing the recommendations with regard to the new strain of the virus and self-isolation, to which Capak said that he was not thinking about it yet.

Beroš: 'We support testing but it is not the best'

Beroš was asked if there were any plans to expand testing in the health system, to which he said that all the circumstances were taken into account and that the third dose was therefore emphasized. "We support testing, but it is not the best. Only through a combination of recovery, vaccination, and testing can we give a guarantee, but even that is not absolute", he said and added that COVID certificates protect those who fight against them, the unvaccinated.

Capak also referred to the theses that appear in public, especially among the protesters, that the vaccinated and the unvaccinated transmit the virus equally. "It's not true, we need to be aware of that," he said. He added that scientific papers if read should be cited and said that vaccinated people did not transmit the virus during the alpha variant, in the delta they can carry the virus on the mucosa but they are not contagious.

However, he added that they can get sick and transmit the virus or have a virus on the mucous membrane that increases and can be transmitted, and stressed that it is all far less than in the unvaccinated. "People who are vaccinated transmit the virus less, the number of virus particles on their mucous membranes drops very quickly, and thus the contagion. This is scientifically proven," he said, adding that no country in the world tests all health workers on admission to hospitals. In the end, Božinović called on everyone to adhere to basic measures, wearing a mask, distance, ventilation, and maintaining personal hygiene.

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

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and select your preferred language.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Croatian PlantOn App Offers Users "Garden in Their Palm"

November the 26th, 2021 - The Croatian PlantOn app allows its users to access their garden ''in their palm'' from wherever they might be.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, Goran Markovanovic and Mario Salai from Slavonia created the Croatian PlantOn app, which provides its customers and producers with a "garden in the palm of your hand" experience, with direct connections between the user and the grower permitted with ease.

The user of the Croatian PlantOn app is directly connected to the producer from whom they have rented the garden, while the same producer grows vegetables for the user and sends them all of the crops from their garden to their home address.

By paying for the service, the buyer provides farmers with a fixed monthly income throughout the year, and the family does not have to worry about the placement and sale of their vegetables.

“The Croatian PlantOn app also opens up new employment opportunities for local farmers, and better quality control and product quantity planning reduces the risk of overproduction, unnecessary production and food waste. When a user asks to rent a garden, they can do so even when planting has only just begun, so the crop can be already fully sold, which provides family farms with security and additional motivation, and direct delivery ensures the better hygiene and freshness of the vegetables. The PlantOn system enables income to be kept in the hands of the ''small'' people, who will retain purchasing power and improve the economy of the more rural parts of Croatia,'' said Markovanovic.

All activities from the field are available to tenants via the Croatian PlantOn app so they can see their garden at any time. In this way, the customer gets healthy, locally grown foods easily and they even know exactly how they've been grown and where they've come from.

As Markovanovic and Salai added, the delivery of fresh vegetables from Slavonia and Baranja gardens is possible to all parts of Croatia. They have three packages - Family (eight types of vegetables), Custom (the buyer chooses everything down to the last bit) or Business, which is intended only for business entities (this is done only with large areas with the cultivation of crops of choice). In addition to growing vegetables, the app also offers seasonal nutrition tips and different recipes.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Zagreb Brewery to Begin Producing Popular Irish Beer Brand in 2022

November the 26th, 2021 - The well known Zagreb Brewery (Zagrebacka pivovara) is set to start producing one of the world's most popular beer brands as of next year, which is sure to delight many.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, Diageo, the world's leading premium beverage company, producer of Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff and Guinness, has announced a partnership with Zagreb Brewery, a member of the Molson Coors Beverage Company, to distribute Diago's beer portfolio across the Republic of Croatia starting on January the 1st next year.

For Diageo, the strategic partnership with Molson Coors will help the Guinness and Kilkenny brands to market even more rapidly with the strong presence of the Zagreb Brewery's distribution channels here in Croatia.

"We're pleased to be able to announce our new partnership with Molson Coors in Eastern Europe. We're going to continue to develop our marketing strategy and we believe that this collaboration will help us significantly increase the availability of our beer brands. We look forward to the opportunities and growth we can achieve together with Molson Coors in Croatia with our brands and future innovations,'' said Michael Holm, the Diageo CEO for Eastern Europe.

Sergey Yeskov, CEO of Molson Coors Beverage Company for Central and Eastern Europe, said they want to expand their portfolio to allow them to offer premium brands. They also want to find partners with the same values ​​as Molson Coors, who, as he pointed out, are “rooted in quality, workmanship and heritage”.

“We're excited and proud that we're going to be able to distribute these two global Diage brand icons here in Croatia. We will continue to invest in products that are more than premium and use our distribution network to bring Guinness and Kilkenny, which perfectly complement our great portfolio, closer to beer lovers across the country,'' said Yeskov.

Guinness is a very well known dark Irish stout created at the Arthur Guinness Brewery in St. Louis. James’s Gate, in Dublin back in 1759. It is one of the world's most successful alcohol brands, produced in almost 50 countries and available in more than 120 countries of the world. Kilkenny is also an Irish beer produced by Guinness, which originates from Kilkenny in Ireland.

For more, check out our business section.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Covid-Related Economic Fears Still Strong for Croatian Exporters

November the 26th, 2021 - Croatian exporters are still dealing with concerns related to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the economic issues that it has created over the best part of the last two years.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ana Blaskovic writes, in a sea of ​​bad news which has been circulating since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic - restrictions, bottlenecks in supplies, energy spikes and the latest headaches due to inflation - there's also a bit of good news here and there. The euro slipped to its lowest value against the dollar since July last year, giving exporters dealing in the single currency a competitive advantage globally.

The effect unfortunately won't really spill over significantly to Croatian exporters and other domestic producers because the lion's share of foreign trade takes place in euros. However, good export trends could be disrupted by new ''lockdowns'' which have been reintroduced in some European countries, especially Austria and Germany.

The single currency lost about 8 percent of its value against the US dollar in one year. The decline reflects the fact that the European Union had to pay a very high price during a pandemic, from the initial confusion to public conflict over vaccines that have led to high death rates and blows to respective EU economies.

Despite the rapid recovery we've seen in recent months, markets continue to perceive relative lagging behind global players.

“Europe has a fundamental problem of reducing the trade surplus because it has two major challenges; rising energy prices and raw material vulnerabilities ”, explained Zeljko Lovrincevic from the Institute of Economics. The implementation of the Green Agenda, which is being firmly pushed by richer EU member states and is the backbone of EU policy, carries a high price for the poorer nations.

"Although the euro has weakened considerably, not only against the dollar but also against other currencies, trade has deteriorated as import prices have risen," Lovrincevic said, noting that EU producers ultimately didn't benefit too much from the currency's frequent weakening, and that's the situation for Croatia as well.

Eurostat figures clearly testify to the slowdown in the bloc's trade. The EU's trade surplus with the world fell to 4.8 billion euros back during the month of August this year, from 14 billion euros in the same month a year ago. In September, the total trade surplus fell to 7.3 billion euros, while in 2020 it amounted to 24.1 billion euros.

The weaker euro was also contributed by the position of the European Central Bank that the current inflation is only a temporary disturbance due to which it will not hurry with the raising of interest rates. ECB chief Christine Lagarde has made it clear that tightening monetary policy would "do more harm than good" and that it is "unlikely" that the conditions will be met next year either.

Consumer price growth accelerated to 4.1 percent in the Eurozone and 4.4 percent at the European Union level in October. In the conditions of a stable exchange rate, inflation in Croatia spills over through import prices, especially in regard to energy and food, and prices rose by 3.8 percent in October.

"For the EU, this means that inflation will not only be a short-term phenomenon, but that it will be present in the long run instead. This is a consequence of targeting monetary moves according to the needs of the weakest member states, so it is expected that the ECB will be the last to raise interest rates,'' it was explained.

Croatian exporters, who are often rumored to be the best part of the economy, will be more affected by accelerating prices in the business environment. The more inflation persists, the expectations for further growth are built into contracts on salaries, suppliers, pensions… The first test of whether an inflation clause will be arrived to in this country will be the current negotiations between the state and public sector unions on a new collective agreement. If the unions do succeed in breaking the ice, the others will go the same way too.

Local producers will thus not benefit from a weaker euro as they are firmly tied to exports to the European Union; exports to other member states make up about 70 percent of the total value of exports, while a significant part of exports to EFTA and CEFTA countries are realised solely in euros, they stated from the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

They added that in the global market over more recent years there have been significant oscillations in the movement of the euro against other currencies, so when contracting new export transactions it is not possible to be guided by the current depreciation trends.In addition, it should be emphasised that regardless of the current trend of the weakening of the euro, its average value against the dollar (and thus against currencies linked to the dollar) and the Swiss franc in the first ten months of this year was higher than in the same period last year.

There is now an immediate problem placed at the door of European and Croatian exporters - new ''lockdowns'' that were eagerly rejected by politics until recently, but which have been reintroduced by some nations. "The introduction of new covid restrictions in several Eurozone member states will certainly have additional adverse effects on the economy of the Eurozone, to which the majority of Croatian exports are tied. This isn't good news for Croatian exporters and producers at all, especially since the Eurozone trade surplus to the rest of the world decreased significantly in 2021 compared to what we saw in 2020, and Croatian exporters depend on the likes of Germany and other Eurozone members, so their economic weakening means and lower potential for our export placement and Croatian GDP growth,'' explained worried Croatian exporters.

For more, check out our business section.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Innovative Croatian ScanShop App Being Tested Out by NTL

November the 26th, 2021 - The large shopping chain NTL (Narodni trgovacki lanac) has been testing out the innovative new Croatian ScanShop app in its stores.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, the NTL chain is starting to test out the Croatian ScanShop app in its stores, which allows the customer to independently scan the desired items in the store via their own mobile phone and thus skip the queues for the cash register. This is a practice already common in some large Northern European chains, such as the British Tesco.

The Croatian ScanShop app allows shoppers more time to select their products instead of standing and waiting in lines at the checkout, it reduces frustration for the customer and makes the experience more positive in general. It also provides the user with personalised content based on their shopping list and previous purchases, as well as all information about the product(s) or various promotions in individual stores.

"We're glad to have the opportunity to be the first to test out an innovative Croatian product and check the technical and operational possibilities for its implementation. With the support of small technological start-up companies, our goal is certainly to provide our customers with even greater customer satisfaction. The introduction of the Croatian ScanShop app potentially opens the possibility for the better use of the time of our employees so that they, instead of at the checkout, are at the service of customers when they're shopping and are actually choosing products,'' said the director of NTL, Martin Evacic.

As part of a European Union (EU) project, the Croatian ScanShop app has reached a stage where it is ready for use in stores, but continued testing in real conditions is a necessary prerequisite for the further development of the application to reach its full potential.

"We're happy that NTL has recognised us as a possible partner and allowed us to test out our application in real conditions. In this phase, the Croatian ScanShop app development team improve things with the support of NTL employees, and we hope that the knowledge from the test phase will enable ScanShop to progress even more, and with the support of investors, it will be available to the general public and as many stores as possible,'' said Luka Buljan on behalf of the technology team developing the application.

The development of the application was supported by European Union funds, which emphasises the financing of radical innovations with the potential for success. The total value of the project was 1.6 million kuna, of which EU funds financed 85 percent.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

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