Sunday, 30 May 2021

German Die Welt Praises "Elon Musk of the Balkans" Mate Rimac

May the 30th, 2021 - The German Die Welt publication, which is highly popular among German readers, has praised Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac once again, referring to him as the Elon Musk of the Balkans.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the German Die Welt reported that ''Mate Rimac actually just wanted to be a successful professional auto-moto driver, but over time he became a symbol of hope for car manufacturers on the road to electromobility,''

The Berlin-based Die Welt looks back at one episode with which the success story of this much loved Croatian entrepreneur began. Mate Rimac's old BMW "troika" failed in one race and the engine "died", writes Die Welt journalist Thomas Geiger: "At that time, it seemed like the biggest possible accident that could happen, but in actual fact, nothing better could have ever happened to Mate Rimac...''

If it weren't for that technical problem, Rimac might never have come up with the idea to install the simple electric motor of a forklift in his car, instead of an expensive new engine. And so, writes the German Die Welt, Rimac's green "troika" became the well known "Green Monster", and Rimac himself became the "king of drifting". The innovative Croat's videos were watched by millions of people on YouTube, and later he became "the man who made the strongest sports e-car in the world, that is, an ardent supporter of electric propulsion".

"The Elon Musk of the Balkans"

"A skilful Croat with an almost shy smile hidden behind a thick beard is currently one of the most sought-after people in the industry," the German newspaper wrote in its article entitled "Visionary under voltage", emphasising that Rimac is only 33 years old, and that a lot has happened in his life in the past ten years alone. "Once an average student, and then an ingenious inventor" is now a partner and supplier of sophisticated technological solutions, from batteries to engines - he has become the "Elon Musk of the Balkans", writes the German Die Welt, as reported by Deutsche Welle.

The fact that this remarkable entrepreneur comes from Croatia gives this whole story an additional, special element, writes the Berlin daily. "On the colourful car map of the world, the former Yugoslavia has been a relatively white spot since the end of production of the small Yugo back in 2008, there are almost no automotive manufacturers there. Nevertheless, decisive development began right there: only 200 kilometres southeast of the headquarters of Rimac's company in Sveta Nedelja, a certain Nikola Tesla was born,'' notes the German Die Welt.

''Rimac is geographically closer to Tesla than he is to Elon Musk,'' writes the German journalist.

Regardless of the electrical engineering thanks to which he became famous, Rimac doesn't "insist" on changing the world for the better, at least not on the road, the article notes:

”Rimac's penchant for e-cars has its source not in environmental protection, but in the joy of driving, the taste that these cars give him,'' notes the journalist.

Regardless of all the successes that Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac has stacked up over recent years, and despite all the models he has developed and sold for high sums of money, "Die Welt" still notices one particularly Croatian problem plaguing the entire thing - the lack of skilled labour.

"Croatia isn't exactly the armpit of the world, but the outskirts of Zagreb aren't a magnet for experts from abroad either. That's why it isn't surprising that Rimac is currently planning a new headquarters, which is a bit reminiscent of Autostadt in Wolfsburg or a little more like Apple's headquarters in Cupertino/ And in those new headquarters, Rimac's Green Monster will of course get a place of honour,'' concludes the German Die Welt article.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Wednesday, 31 March 2021

Boost for Istrian Tourism as Die Welt Tells Germans They May Travel

March the 31st, 2021 - Istrian tourism could be given a breath of fresh air amid the ongoing pandemic as an influential German publication publishes an article detailing where German tourists may travel without the need for quarantine.

The coronavirus pandemic has dealt a heavy blow to the entire world, but those countries which typically rely heavily on tourism have suffered tremendously. Croatia, with tourism being its strongest economic branch, hasn't been immune to the devastating economic effects of the pandemic, lockdowns and travel uncertainty. Istrian tourism, however, has been given a new spring in its step as the influential German publication Die Welt tells German tourists, who are otherwise great lovers of Istria, that they may enter.

As Morski writes, Nera Milicic, Head of the Croatian Tourist Board's representation over in the German city of Munich, explained the following: This publication in Die Welt, which is one of the leading ''opinion makers'' among German media, and whose readers have higher purchasing power and higher demands, will certainly contribute to the additional perception of Istria, but also Croatia, as a desirable holiday destination for German guests.''

The author of the article, Sonke Kruger, stated that it is possible for German tourists to travel to Istria without the need for self-isolation or quarantine upon entering Croatia and returning to Germany, but there is still the obligation to present a negative PCR test at the border. The author additionally emphasised the fact that Istria is the most attractive and the most accessible Croatian region for German visitors, many of which tend to come by car.

The article also conveys information from German tour operators who are very interested in Istrian tourism and holidays in Istria, and pointed out that many Istrian hotels are already open, while the number of accommodation options available to tourists will only increase even further in the coming months.

It's worth adding that in addition to Croatia and the mention of Istrian tourism for German visitors in that particular article, it also lists the parts of Spain and Portugal where German tourists can currently travel without mandatory quarantine on returning home to Germany, but it is noted that various regulations related to the prevention of the spread of the novel coronavirus are still in force, from mandatory testing to strict hygiene rules and the wearing of protective masks.

For all current coronavirus information specific to Croatia, including travel and border rules, as well as testing centres across the country, make sure to bookmark this page.

Monday, 17 August 2020

Corruption at All Levels - German Media Says Croatia is Europe's Problem Child

As Index writes on the 15th of August, 2020, the European Commission (EC) proposes that only member states which actually respect European Union law receive money from the EU. The German media publication Die Welt writes that several countries could be left without hundreds of millions of euros in that case, including Croatia.

"Violations of the law and corruption are much more common in the EU than is generally known. And this phenomenon is spreading, regardless of whether the heads of the government belong to conservative, social democratic or liberal parties," writes the conservative newspaper Die Welt, as reported by DW.

"Alarm bells are ringing in Brussels: The European Commission has proposed that future payments from EU funds be linked to compliance with its regulations. This issue will return to the agenda in the autumn. Many countries could run out of hundreds of millions of euros and therefore the chance for something like that to pass aren't big,'' writes the aforementioned German media publication. It cites Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia and Croatia as problematic countries.

The Republic of Croatia - a problem with corruption

The popular tourist destination, led by Andrej Plenkovic, has a smart head of its government who is well networked in the conservative European People's Party (EPP). But behind that facade there is a dark side, writes Die Welt.

"Corruption is a huge problem in Croatia and it exists at all political levels," said Robin-Ivan Capar, an expert on Croatia at the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) research centre.

Capar doesn't exclude Croatian courts here either. In the so-called Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index, Croatia has now dropped down to an unimpressive 63rd place. A new EU report on media diversity makes an utterly disastrous assessment of Croatia: "Journalists are the subject of dirty campaigns, hate messages, death threats, intimidation, police harassment and defamation charges."

The German media publication also states that, according to reports from human rights organisations such as Amnesty International, Croatia partially refuses to receive asylum seekers at its borders without any checks, thus violating European Union law. In addition, it is alleged that the border police are abusing migrants. The Croatian Government has rejected and continues to vehemently reject these ongoing allegations.

Slovenia: Jansa is problematic

Significant policy changes are currently taking place in neighbouring Slovenia, which the European Union's public barely notices, writes the German media. Janez Jansa of the Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS), who was elected prime minister back in March this year and is a friend of Hungarian Prime Minister Orban, is considered to be a fiery nationalist.

"There the are first signs that the independence of the Slovenian judiciary is being called into question. Corruption is also a problem in the judiciary. The courts are partly politicised and don't work in line with the standards we can expect in the EU," said Marko Lovec, a political scientist at the University of Ljubljana.

The EU also complains about the lack of media diversity in Slovenia. According to Lovec, "Hungarian businessmen are currently buying up media in Slovenia."

Jansa's attitude towards freedom of expression is also considered to be disturbed. When he was the leader of the opposition, he slandered two journalists, referring to them prostitutes who had served their time - and the Supreme Court approved that, according to Die Welt.

The European Commission is currently following the case of investigative journalist Blaz Zgaga with concern, who reported (in great detail) on the chaos and corruption during the procurement of respirators and medical masks, and Jansa publicly accused him of lying, the German newspaper states about Slovenia.

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Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Plenkovic for Die Welt: "Our Mentality is Mediterranean, But We Behaved Like Northern Europeans"

May 19, 2020 - For German national newspaper Die Welt, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic spoke about the upcoming season, how Croatia has dealt with the corona crisis, and the Croatian presidency of the EU.

Novi List reports that Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic expressed in an interview with the daily Die Welt hope that this year's tourist season will still be successful, after Zagreb responded well to the crisis related to the coronavirus pandemic with a relatively small number of infections.

Currently, Croatia, as he said for Monday's issue of the German newspaper, is in the phase of testing measures for the gradual elimination of restrictions in the hospitality industry.

"We are currently looking at how it works in practice. And I am sure that before the summer season we will gather many good practical experiences," said the Croatian Prime Minister.

He expressed confidence that the number of newly infected will not increase during the summer if everyone continues to adhere to the measures, and expressed hope that this season will be successful. He added that the same number of tourists is not expected as last year.

Explaining the relatively low number of infections in Croatia, he pointed out that Croatia “has been closely monitoring developments in China since January 8. And at the end of the same month, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, I talked to the president of the World Health Organization, and even then, it was clear to me that this could be dangerous. "

He concluded that all measures against the spread of the coronavirus were "clearly communicated" to the citizens, but added that the credit also lay with the citizens who followed the instructions.

"I am impressed because our mind is actually Mediterranean. But during the pandemic, we behaved more like northern Europeans," said Plenković, who also pointed to the long tradition of healthcare in Croatia.

Plenković emphasized that the Croatian presidency of the EU was different than expected due to the pandemic, but also that some results had been achieved, of which he pointed out the opening of accession negotiations with Albania and Northern Macedonia.

"Through political and diplomatic efforts, we have changed the position of some rather influential members. That will be remembered as historical merit of Croatia for its neighbors," said Plenković.

He also concluded that the European Union must maintain its presence in the region so that it does not fall under the influence of other powers.

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