Friday, 16 August 2019

Xenophobia, Homophobia and Prejudice from Croatian Diplomat in Berlin

As Index/Gordan Duhacek writes on the 16th of August, 2019, a Croatian diplomat from the embassy in Berlin, Elizabeta Mađarević, has been spreading racist, xenophobic and homophobic views on Facebook, and criticises the German chancellor for having a "lack of her own culture".

Croatia begins holding the EU Presidency as of January the 1st, 2020, which Prime Minister Andrej Plenković of course describes as a great honour and a pinnacle of the Croatian state's foreign policy. Plenković speaks about this on almost every occasion possible. The significant of Croatia's EU presidency is also frequently emphasised the new foreign and European affairs minister, Gordan Grlić Radman, who was Plenković's personal choice for the post, who was until recently the Croatian ambassador to Berlin, Germany.

There is no doubt that during Croatia's EU presidency, a good official relationship between Zagreb and Berlin will be even more important than ever, because along side the United Kingdom and France, Germany remains the most powerful member of the European Union, and the success of the Croatian agenda crucially depends on German support. On top of that, Germany also takes over from Croatia in terms of EU presidency in the second half of 2020.

Continuous communication, coordination and good relations between the diplomatic staff of the two countries are therefore extremely important, but Croatia does not seem to understand this, given the fact that the first secretary of the Croatian Embassy in Berlin is Elizabeta Mađarević, who likes to post about a ''white and pure Europe''.

This Croatian diplomat is spreading questionable and prejudice views on her Facebook profile, writing about "white Europe" and how only such a Europe can be "pure", spreading anti-immigrant theories, attacking the rights of the LGBT community, the rather unpleasant list goes on, and then on a bit more. 

In addition, Mađarević has published texts on several internet portals over the years in which she attacks migrants and refugees by presenting them as a threat to Christian Europe, and did not fail to attack the Istanbul Convention and Plenković himself, and, more importantly, German Chancellor Angela Merkel. In one text, this Croatian ''diplomat'' diagnosed her with having a "lack of her own culture" because of her statement that Islam belongs in Germany.

The fact that such a person is a prominent part of the Croatian diplomatic mission in the German capital should of course cause a scandal and damages Croatia's reputation in Berlin and in the European Union as a whole.

In addition to photographs of the glorious Croatian Adriatic, she wrote in English Croatia as a "Pure and authentic Europe, with only white Europeans"

Let's first look at what she has written on her Facebook page. On August the 8th, she posted photos of the Adriatic and wrote the following in English: ''Pure and authentic Europe. Just white Europeans as it used to be 30 years ago in the while Europe. This should be a good advertisement for vacations. One would think that this is no longer possible but luckily it is.''

It is almost inconceivable for German diplomacy, of all, to have staff who write in such a way about a "white Europe", especially one who uses the word "pure" in such a context, because this is an undoubted expression of racist sentiment, but this certainly doen't appear to present a problem in Croatian diplomacy.

The rhetoric about "white Europe" is characteristic of white nationalists, among other groups, as is the speech about the purity of a nation or race that implies that dark-skinned people are dirty. The slogans about the "white race" and the "purity of Europe" are a standard part of typical neo-Nazi protests, as well as the Facebook profile of the first secretary of the Croatian Embassy in Berlin.

But that isn't all, this Croatian ''diplomat'' also writes about the LGBT community being made up of people with "immorality and psychological disorders''

As well as racism, Mađarević also spreads anti-LGBT propaganda on her Facebook page, writing in one post about LGBT people that "it is possible to heal and get rid of all this immorality and these psychological disorders".

This post, it seems, is a quote from an article she shared from Christian Headlines describing how a drag queen "discovered" Jesus and was ''saved''. Moreover, Mađarević often emphasises her Christianity both on Facebook and in her other texts, and the version she promotes is quite close to the views of contoversial Željka Markić and the association U ime obitelji.

The first secretary of the Croatian Embassy believes that an "Islamisation agenda" is being implemented across Europe, writing on her Facebook page: "Migrants, mostly Muslims, arrive to Europe not just for the social benefits and European passport, which they obtain in incredably [incredibly] short time (in Arab states they would never get the passport or citizenship or any social benefits if they live there for decades!) but also for the political reasons of islamising agenda. Europe, you needs to learn to say no and build your self-respect and Christian identity that has created the most developed parts of the world.''

The Croatian diplomat also shared an article on her Facebook profile from the ultracatholic portal Lifesitenews calling for the Catholic Church to expel all those believers who support a woman's right to abortion.

Lifesitenews is a portal belonging to the Canadian lobbying organisation Campaign Life Coalition, which fights same-sex marriage, sex education in schools, homosexuality, and fornication. Pope Francis is often attacked on this portal, and the fact-checking portal Snopes describes them as "known spreaders of misinformation." Articles from Lifesitenews are often transmitted by Željka Markić, the portal, and the Catholic portal in Croatia.

On the topic of abortion, she linked to an article from Lifesitenews and wrote: ''The Catholic simply cannot be pro-abortion. Lessons-learned from Ireland: For those who claim to be Catholic but who agree with abortion, it is time for the hierachy to act with similar boldness by announcing that these people are no longer Catholic and they should no longer present themselves for Holy Communion, as Godparents, as Confirmation sponsors, or for any other public ministry in the Church.''

One of the favourite topics of Lifesitenews is linking homosexuality with pedophilia, and Mađarević also shared an article about it on Facebook, stating in English: ''How lgbt is tied to pedophilia, a case shows. Mental disorders of cases like this are quite clear as well. Problem is that media likes to call it 'freedom of expression' , and not for what it is.''

The Croatian ''diplomat'' in Germany is also bothered by German law that allows Croats to work in the German police force.

It seems that Germany and German state politics are the most frequent target of the obviously all knowing and lovely Mađarević. In one post, she ironically describes the news from Badische Neuste Nachrichten that in the province of Baden-Württemberg, out of 24,000 police officers, 330 of them aren't German nationals, which is possible under a German law from 1993, as a ''good comedy''. These people are mostly immigrants who have a permanent residence permit and have proven their German language skills.

Mađarević comments this: ''The security of the Germans has been put in the hands of foreigners living in Germany - in order to improve social integration. Obviously, the social integration of foreigners into German society is more important than the safety and welfare of German citizens. There, integration is the key word for everyone. I'm just wondering how a Turkish or Iranian cop will defend a German, and not his Turkish or Iranian compatriot. Loyalty is obviously not so important for integration (that is why European multicultural societies function so perfectly).''

From this status, as well as from texts published by Mađarević on various portals, she does not seem to approve of the idea of ​​integrating aliens into society, because she believes that nations, races and religions should not interfere with each other, but live separately. That makes perfect sense from a Croat living and working in Germany, doesn't it?

Otherwise, in an article from Badische Neuste Nachrichten, which Magarevic shared on her Facebook and attacked the German practice of hiring non-German police officers who have a permanent residence permit, it states that among those 330 police officers there are also Croats, Italians, in Baden-Württemberg. Greeks and Spaniards. But she - in line with the Islamophobic propaganda she is spreading - has highlighted only Turks and Iranians. To make it even more absurd, the first secretary of the Croatian Embassy in Germany attacks German law, which also allowed Croats to get jobs in the German police! Therefore, according to her, these Croats should not be policemen in Germany.

Angela Merkel suffers from a "lack of her own culture'', at least according to Elizabeta.

When it comes to texts published by Mađarević on portals, most of them were published on the Politikaplus portal.

One text asks "How not to become a populist today?" And another offers "a different picture of the immigration crisis", which she describes as "a lack of one's own culture and a clash of cultures." In this text, Mađarević attacks Germany and writes: ''Angela Merkel's statement that Islam is an integral part of German culture points to something else. And that is the lack of a culture of our own, whether we like it or not, related to Christianity.''

Unsurprisingly, she also attacked the Croatian decision to ratifiy the Istanbul Convention.

She describes the Istanbul Convention as a "tragedy" and adds that "new leaders are being sought", which seems to be an attack on the Croatian PM. Mađarević states that "the real question is why the implementation of such a contentious document is being pushed at the cost of its own face, the largest 'democratic' party, that likes to be called a patriotic party'' (in reference to HDZ).

Furthermore, Mađarevic wonders where ''our'' leaders are, where those strong enough to fight for what's important are, and where these ''strong Croatian men'' are, who serve Christ and the Church. She goes on to talk about how such people are rare now.

She obviously doesn't consider Plenković a "strong Croatian man'', but it's doubtful he is losing sleep over what such an individual thinks of him.

But that isn't all! She also describes human rights as "nonexistent", apparently.

Mađarević texts can also be found to qualify human rights as "nonexistent" and she often writes against the idea of ​​universal human rights. There are also problems in her head with the French Revolution and the values ​​that have arisen from it.

She tends to judge even those who just want a good time like normal people. She writes of her stay in the Latvian capital of Riga: "They tell me that the lure of young Swedes to spending a weekend in Riga is great. Alcohol is very cheap here, and the girls love their rich neighbours. So much for Sweden as the exemplary and moral vertical of the European North.''

So, for this Croatian diplomat to have a problem with you, you don't even need to be bisexual, gay, lesbian, a non Christian, someone serving in the German police force, or even Angela Merkel, it's enough for you to just want to have a good time, especially in Riga, to be on her hit list. Lovely, no?

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has remained without comment.

Index, of course, wanted to hear the Foreign Ministry's comment on the shocking views expressed by their so called diplomat. They sent an email to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Croatian Embassy in Berlin, but have not yet received any answers.

Index also called the Office of the MVEP Spokesman several times, but no one answered the phone. They then called the Directorate for Europe, but they told them there was nothing they could comment on without spokespersons and instructed them to call the headquarters. They then called the switchboard several times, but each time they were greeted with: "All operators are busy." Index waited on the line until they were cut off. They then called the spokesman again, but nobody answered.

The great scandal of Croatian diplomacy.

Either way, Elizabeta Mađarević is currently the first secretary of the Croatian Embassy in Berlin, which does not currently have an ambassador at her head since Radman Grlić became Minister of Foreign Affairs. Croatia is currently represented in the German capital by a person who expresses shockingly racist and xenophobic attitudes, with a particular dislike for Germany, German society, and Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Radman Grlić, with whom she worked closely in Berlin, did not seem to have a problem with this, nor did former Minister Marija Pejčinović Burić, in whose mandate she was sent to Berlin, one of Europe's most multicultural and forward-thinking cities.

Plenković must now intervene.

Make sure to follow our dedicated politics page for much more.

Tuesday, 16 July 2019

Record Number of Croatian Citizens Living in Germany

ZAGREB, July 16, 2019 - Germany's population rose by over 400,000 in 2018 as a result of immigration and Croatian citizens, numbering 29,000, were the second largest group of immigrants from the EU last year after Romanians, the Federal Statistical Office of Germany said on Tuesday.

A total of 1.58 million people moved to Germany in 2018, while 1.18 million moved out so that, as a result of migration, about 400,000 more people lived there at the end of 2018 than at the beginning of the year, the office said in a press release.

In 2018, 57,724 Croatian citizens arrived in Germany, while 28,869 departed, so the number of Croatian citizens living there increased by 28,855 to 395,665.

At the end of 2017, 367,900 Croatian citizens lived in Germany, 27,765 fewer than a year later. At the end of 2016, 332,605 Croatian citizens lived there, 35,295 fewer than a year later.

Since 2010, when 220,199 Croats lived in Germany, the number of German residents holding Croatian citizenship rose by 175,466.

Also, 158,595 Croatian citizens have been living in Germany over 25 years, 113,760 stay from one to four years and 34,960 stay there less than a year.

In 2018, Germany recorded the largest number of EU immigrants from Romania (68,000), followed by Croatia (29,000) and Bulgaria (27,000). Last year 22,749 Bosnian citizens arrived in Germany and 10,331 departed.

Eighty-seven percent of last year's immigrants to Germany were foreigners, while the rest were Germans who moved back after living abroad.

More emigration news can be found in the Politics section.

Thursday, 11 July 2019

Convicted Intelligence Officer Perković Transferred from Germany to Zagreb

ZAGREB, July 11, 2019 - Former Yugoslav and Croatian intelligence official Josip Perković (74) was transferred to Zagreb's Remetinec Prison on Thursday after Germany handed him over to the Croatian authorities so that he could serve his prison term for the 1983 murder of political emigrant Stjepan Đureković.

Perković arrived in Zagreb on a regular flight from Munich and was admitted to prison at 2.50pm.

Justice Minister Dražen Bošnjaković said earlier in the day that Perković would spend some time at the prison's diagnostics centre after which it would be decided in which prison he would serve the remainder of his sentence.

Perković and his one-time superior Zdravko Mustač (77) were handed over to Germany early in 2014 on the condition that after the trial they served their sentences in Croatia.

In August 2015, the Supreme Court in Munich sentenced them to life imprisonment for their roles in the murder of Croatian dissident Stjepan Đureković in Wolfratshausen, outside Munich, in July 1983. Đureković was killed by as yet unidentified perpetrators.

On May 14 this year, the Croatian Supreme Court dismissed Perković's appeal and upheld the Zagreb County Court ruling of December 2018 that translated the German sentence of life imprisonment into a 30-year prison term, which he is to serve in Croatia under Croatian regulations.

Mustač is still in custody in Germany. The County Court in Velika Gorica has converted his sentence into a 40-year prison term.

Following the sentence handed down by the German court, both Perković and Mustač have turned to the European Court of Human Rights.

Perković's lawyer Anto Nobilo said on Thursday he hoped the court in Strasbourg would rule in his client's favour and that he would be released from prison in a year or two.

More info about Croatia as part of Yugoslavia can be found in the Politics section.

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

German Ambassador Visits Vukovar

ZAGREB, July 3, 2019 - German Ambassador to Croatia Robert Klinke made his inaugural visit to Vukovar on Tuesday where he met with Mayor Ivan Penava and later with young people from the German towns of Geisa and Vacha who are currently visiting Vukovar as part of an exchange programme.

We spoke about Vukovar as a European town and I am very pleased to see that here too young people have an excellent role, representing the town's development potential. These young people from Germany have come here to develop friendly dialogue, and that means respect and understanding that is turned to the future, Klinke said.

Mayor Penava said that he and Ambassador Klinke discussed Vukovar'spast, present and future.

We had the opportunity to reflect on our long history, culture and tradition but also on all those things that signify us today like the Homeland War and the immense destruction which can still be felt in the economy and jobs in Vukovar. We also discussed the town's prospects and potential for future investors that we would like to see in the town, Penava told reporters.

Penava said the youth exchange programme had been implemented since 2014 between Vukovar and Geise and Vach with the participation of Vukovar's Franciscan monastery and religious communities from the two German towns.

Ambassador Klinke was later received by County Prefect Bozo Galić.

More Vukovar news can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Conference Held on Differences in SMEs in Croatia and Germany

ZAGREB, May 29, 2019 - A conference on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Croatia and Germany organised by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Zagreb on Tuesday discussed the differences and similarities in their success.

In Germany, SMEs are considered a pillar of the economy, accounting for 99.5% of all businesses in the country and employing 70.4% of the population in 2017, said Harald Seibel, permanent deputy German ambassador and head of the economic department.

He said many factors impacted the success of SMEs, such as demography and an increasingly old population, unqualified labour and a shortage of young people. "Our country wouldn't be as economically strong without small and medium-sized enterprises."

Croatian Economy Minister Darko Horvat said microenterprises and SMEs accounted for 99.3% of all businesses in Croatia, employing over 60% of all workers and generating 60% of added value. "However, there's a difference," he said, asking translators and listeners "not to understand this literally."

"We are creating a quality workforce for German enterprises and we are neither ashamed nor afraid of it," he said, mentioning east-to-west legal economic migration. He said "those who start working here in Croatia at one point recognise their opportunity and... look for a better paid job."

Horvat said the present-day emigration from Croatia was quite different from the one in the past because then people went to Germany to work on a temporary basis, whereas nowadays they took their families with them and stayed there.

The minister said he would "like computers to do the administrative part in my ministry so we can focus only on... recognising good ideas. Now we do 80% of the work mechanically, not thinking strategically to answer the question of what we want of Croatia in ten years."

He said "the German state secretary has the answer to that question, as she has a vision of what it means to draw up strategic documents systematically, so that it doesn't happen that when one political elite replaces another... everything that was done before is set on fire because nothing's good."

Horvat said the digitisation of the whole system would reduce the possibility of corruption. "If what I'm talking about doesn't happen, in October we won't be 56th, we'll be 68th. We'll fall for the sixth year in a row and won't recover easily," he said, adding that the goal was to convince the World Bank that Croatia was ready for change in order to stop dropping on the Doing Business rankings.

More news about doing business in Croatia can be found in the Business section.

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Merkel and Weber Participate in HDZ Election Rally

ZAGREB, May 19, 2019 - Addressing the main campaign rally of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) in Zagreb on Saturday evening, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the European People's Party's (EPP) lead candidate for European Commission President, Manfred Weber, said that nationalism was an enemy that wanted to destroy the European Union, whereas patriotism was not against European values.

Our values are that we can be proud of our country - patriotism and the EU do not clash with each other. On the other hand, nationalism is an adversary that wants to destroy Europe and we must say that clearly, said Merkel at the rally which brought together 6,000 HDZ members and supporters in the Dražen Petrović Sports Hall.

Merkel said that the European Union was a project of peace, freedom and prosperity. "We in Germany now have 74 years of peace. You (in Croatia) had a war in the 1990s and you are aware what it means and why it is important to preserve this peace," she said.

And that can be accomplished only if the national cause is advocated on the one hand, while on the other hand we need to be able to put ourselves in other people's shoes and build bridges, the German chancellor said.

She wrapped up her speech in Croatian calling on voters to go to the polls for the EP elections and support the Europe of peace, freedom and prosperity. "Support the EPP and the HDZ, support Manfred Weber and Karlo Ressler," she said. Ressler is the top candidate of the HDZ slate in the 26 May elections for the new EP.

Weber said in his speech that "we love our countries, we are patriots, but we also believe in unity at the European level." Weber called for a response to nationalists and promised that nationalists would not be part of his majority in the future EP.

In his comment on a rally held in Milan earlier on Saturday, at which Matteo Salvini and Marine Le Pen addressed their supporters, Weber said that nationalist ideology in the past had caused a lot of tragedies and should be resisted.

Weber said that the EU was not only an economic alliance but also a community which shares values, underscoring that Christianity is a pillar of Europe. He said that while travelling across Europe he saw diversities of the continent, however he also noticed that in the centre of each town, city or village there was a church which, he added, signifies the Christian faith as a European foundation.

As for illegal migration, Weber said that each country had the right to decide who could pass through its territory and that such a decision should not be made by smugglers.

He also noted that after Athens he visited Zagreb which he described as an obvious and reasonable decision as Croatia was the newest EU member, describing Prime Minister and HDZ leader Andrej Plenković as a close friend.

Weber, who has served as leader of the European People's Party in the European Parliament since 2014 and who is an official of the Christian Social Union in Bavaria, congratulated Croatian football coach Niko Kovač for the success of Bayern Munich which won the Bundesliga championship under his leadership this season.

The HDZ's lead candidate for the European Parliament elections, Karlo Ressler, said he was confident that his party would score yet another convincing victory in the forthcoming elections. "The list of candidates that I lead is an alliance of several generations of the HDZ and several generations of Croatia. But we all work together and breathe as one," Ressler said.

He said that the HDZ's programme was forward-looking, aimed at growth, employment and security, and was promoting a safe and strong Croatia within a strong European Union. He said that young generations in Croatia today had the honour to fight for a better Croatia and prepare it for technological, social and political challenges.

Ressler said that patriotism today was proved with dedicated work and knowledge, citing the construction of the Pelješac Bridge, the construction and reconstruction of over 500 kindergartens, and the creation of over 96,000 jobs in the last three years. "That's what we do today and what we insist on," he said.

At the end, the rally was addressed by Prime Minister and HDZ leader Andrej Plenković. He called on all those present to support Weber as the EPP spitzenkandidat for President of the European Commission.

Plenković also mentioned successes of his government, including the budget surplus, better absorption of EU funding, and EU-funded projects such as the Pelješac Bridge and other infrastructure projects.

More news about the European elections can be found in the Politics section.

Friday, 10 May 2019

Croatian Companies to Use Services of German Chambers of Commerce

ZAGREB, May 10, 2019 - The Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK) on Friday signed an agreement with the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) and the German Chambers of Commerce Abroad (AHK) under which Croatian companies operating abroad would be able to use the services of German foreign trade chambers under the same terms as German companies, the HGK said.

HGK president Luka Burilović said that only an export-oriented economy could guarantee sustainable long-term development to Croatia.

"The agreement means easier access to the markets where DIHK has foreign trade representations, and we are talking about more than 140 locations in 92 countries," Burilović said, calling on all HGK members to use that support on the ground in all markets where they have a business interest.

The services to be provided to the HGK by German foreign trade chambers include market research, support in the search for business partners and accounting services.

The HGK is a natural partner to the German network of chambers, which comprises 79 chambers of industry and commerce (IHK) in Germany, representations and foreign trade chambers (AHK) around the world and the DIHK, based in Berlin and Brussels, said DIHK deputy director Volker Treier.

More news about relations between Croatia and Germany can be found in the Politics section.

Friday, 3 May 2019

Bavarian Prime Minister Soeder Visits Zagreb

ZAGREB, May 3, 2019 - Migration and innovation were the main topics discussed by Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and his Bavarian counterpart Markus Soeder during their meeting at government headquarters in Zagreb on Thursday.

It was the third meeting between Plenković and Soeder, and the first visit of a head of government of the German state of Bavaria to Croatia after 12 years.

Trade between Croatia and Bavaria exceeded 1.1 billion euro in 2018. Some 1,300 Bavarian companies have a presence in Croatia, and 1.2 million Bavarian tourists visit Croatia annually, Plenković said, adding that "this testifies to the diversity of our relations and closeness of our countries."

About 110,000 Croats currently live in Bavaria, providing "a strong link" between the two countries in political, economic and cultural terms, the Croatian PM said.

The two heads of government discussed ways of promoting relations as part of preparations for a meeting of the Croatian-Bavarian Commission which is to take place in Croatia. They also talked about the EU strategy for the Danube region and the Croatian presidency of the EU in the first half of 2020. Also discussed was prevention of illegal migration and Croatia's bid to join the Schengen area.

Croatia and Germany, including Bavaria, need to have a single, coordinated policy, and the migration issue should be addressed at its source and EU members located at that source should be helped, Plenković said.

An agreement on academic cooperation between the University of Rijeka and the University of Regensburg, in cooperation with the Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies, was signed. "Scientific, research and university cooperation is one of the keys to a successful future," Plenković said.

Soeder said that cooperation is necessary in the areas of innovation, robotics and artificial intelligence, because countries cannot make much progress on their own. "We are not as large as China or America, but through our cooperation, which we seek to promote today, we can be stronger," Soeder said.

Speaking of the forthcoming election for the European Parliament, Soeder said it "is very important that we are not together with those who want to split Europe, but with those who want to support it and ensure its further progress."

Asked about the rise of far-right parties and how to deal with them, Soeder said that in Germany they will have to fight against Alternative for Germany (AfD) "with substance and more active communication."

"It seems to me that AfD has gained a monopoly over social media and that's why we need to better explain to people who they are and what they want and be more present in public debates," Soeder said, adding that AfD's influence in Bavaria had been reduced.

Plenković said that the rise of extremist parties, both on the right and the left, was caused by the migrant crisis of 2015, Brexit, the rise of social media and disinformation campaigns.

Plenković and Soeder later attended a round table where they spoke of scientific cooperation, development of academic resources, promotion of academic exchanges and economic initiatives between Croatia and Bavaria.

Plenković said that improving competitiveness by investing in science, education and innovation was the key to the success and prosperity of the European Union and all its member states on the global market.

More news about relations between Croatia and Germany can be found in the Politics section.

Sunday, 28 April 2019

German Chancellor Merkel to Attend EPP Election Rally in Zagreb

ZAGREB, April 28, 2019 - German Chancellor Angela Merkel will attend an election rally of the European People's Party in Zagreb in May, which will be her first appearance at rallies outside Germany, and she will also meet with Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, government spokesman Marko Milić confirmed to Hina.

Merkel and the favourite for the next European Commission President, lead candidate Manfred Weber, will attend the central EPP election rally in Zagreb on May 18.

Merkel's visit to Zagreb, after Plenković's two visits to Berlin during his current term, confirms the ever closer Croatian-German relations, the government said.

Choosing Zagreb as the host of the central EPP rally ahead of elections for the European Parliament confirms the good relations between Chancellor Merkel and Prime Minister Plenković, as well as the HDZ's work in the EPP and Croatia's position in the European Council, Milić said.

More news about relations between Croatia and Germany can be found in the Politics section.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Emigration from Croatia to Germany Decreased in 2018

The record number of foreigners lived in Germany in 2018, and their number increased by 292,000 last year and now stands at 10.9 million. The number of people who moved from Croatia to Germany in 2018 was 27,772, according to the German State Statistical Institute in Wiesbaden, reports on April 16, 2019.

The number of citizens of the Republic of Croatia registered as living in Germany increased by 27,772 from 31 December 2017 and 31 December 2018. This was noticeably fewer people than the year earlier when the number of Croatian citizens in Germany increased by 35,295.

Last year, for the first time since Croatia entered the European Union in 2013, the number of new immigrants from Croatia declined compared to the previous year.

At the end of last year, there were 395,665 Croatian citizens living in Germany, which is 170,694 more than at the end of 2012, which is the last full year in which Croatia was not a member of the European Union.

Most Croatian citizens, around 117,660 of them, live in the federal state of Baden-Württemberg.

By the number of people living in Germany, Croatia is behind Turkey, Poland, Italy, Syria, and Romania.

At the end of 2018, almost 83 million people lived in Germany. The number of 10.9 million foreigners only includes persons with foreign nationality. If we look at the total number of so-called residents with a migrant background, which includes foreigners, German nationals of foreign origin, as well as ethnic Germans who moved to Germany after the collapse of Communism, their number is 19.7 million, almost twice as large.

The most significant inflow of immigrants last year was recorded from the Western Balkans countries, namely Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro and Albania. The rise in the number of immigrants from these countries is linked to the law on immigration of skilled workforce from this part of Europe, which was adopted by Germany in 2015.

In addition to the inhabitants of the Western Balkan countries, the most significant number of immigrants coming to Germany came from India, China and the United States.

Translated from

More emigration news can be found in the Politics section.

Page 5 of 12