Friday, 23 April 2021

Croatian Employment in March 2021: Winning on Monthly Basis, Losing Compared to 2020

April 23, 2021 - Data analyzed by the Croatian Bureau of Statistics saw Croatian Employment in March 2021 rise compared to February but is overall lower than last year.

Employment in Croatia is overall down for 1.5% - concludes an article in Slobodna Dalmacija. This is the result of a statistical analysis conducted for this year's March compared to March 2020. The biggest fall in employment is evident in the hotel industry and hospitality. Last March, 410 people were employed in the sector, adding to the total number of 61,913, but that number is smaller for 5,087 people compared to last year when the number of employed in hotel tourism and hospitality counted 67,000.

„Compared to February, the total number of employed (in March) is up by 0.8% but compared to the same month last year; the numbers are down by 1.5%“, Slobodna Dalmacija quoted the explanation of Croatian Bureau of Statistics.

The process manufacturing industry also counts losses. Despite 2,129 newly employed people who boosted 225,287 workers in the sector, that number is down by 2000 workers less as last year the count was 227,287.  

Merchants count a rise of 803 new workers, 201,117 in total. But, this time last year the total number was 205,167, so this year's there are 4,050 people less in the sector.

On the other hand, several sectors can celebrate victory over statistics from 2020.

The construction sector hired 1,060 new workers. 100,234 people in total this year gives a 5924 boost compared to last year's 195,193 employed people.

Education has 1,094 new workers this month, 120,246 in total. This time last year's there were 117,891 people in total, which suggest 2,355 people increase.

Public service, social security, and defense sectors increase by 648 people to a total of 111,785. In conclusion, 1,325 more people are welcomed to the sector, compared to 2020 when there was 110460 in the mentioned sectors.  

Expectedly, health and social care sectors in March counted 102,636 employed, which is a 1,392 increase compared to last year's 101,244 employed people.

In absolute numbers, the mentioned sectors had the biggest influence on the total rise of employment in Croatia last month, which jumped to 11,302 people, 1,518,034 in total.

 The Bureau added that when counting all minuses and pluses, last year's numbers are better, but the progress is happening in this year nonetheless.  

Additionally, the average salary in Croatia is  7038 kuna, pointed out Slobodna Dalmacija.

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Thursday, 22 April 2021

Croatia With General Government Deficit in 2020, Ending 3-Year-Streak of Surplus

ZAGREB, 22 April, 2021 - The general government generated a consolidated deficit of HRK 27.5 billion, or 7.4% of GDP in 2020, with the consolidated general government debt also increasing, according to a report on which the national statistical office released on Thursday.

The deficit thus ended a three-year streak of surplus.

For comparison's sake in 2019 the government generated a consolidated government surplus of HRK 1.2 billion or 0.3% of GDP while in 2018 it amounted to HRK 863 million or 0.2% of GDP and in 2017, the surplus was HRK 2.8 billion or 0.8% of GDP.

The general government budget deficit occurred in 2020 mostly due to the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic for the national economy, which required the government's support measures to offset the impact.

The consolidated government debt in 2020 reached HRK 329.7 billion or 88.7% of GDP after that debt had gradually decreased for several years, the State Bureau of Statistics (DZS) said in the report. 

At the end of 2019 the general government debt amounted to HRK 292.9 billion, which accounted for 72.8% of GDP. In 2018 it was HRK 286.3 billion or 74.3% of GDP and in 2017 it was HRK 285.1 billion or 77.6% of GDP.

The general government debt increased by HRK 36.8 billion in 2020 or 12.6% year on year with HRK 32.8 billion being net loans and the remainder attributed to depreciation of the kuna currency exchange rate against the euro, DZS says in the report.

RBA: Results better than expected

Commenting on the latest DZS report, Raiffeisenbank Bank Austria (RBA) analysts underscored that the budget gap of HRK 27.5 billion is better than had been expected.

They also attributed the noticeable deterioration in fiscal metrics to the consequences of the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic which resulted in a double-digit contraction in budget revenue while at the same time generating an increase in general government spending.

The total consolidated government revenue in 2020 amounted to HRK 178.5 billion, which is a decrease of HRK 12.5 billion or 6.5% while at the same time expenditure amounted to HRK 205.9 billion, which is HRK 11.3 billion or 8.6% more y-o-y.

(€1 = HRK 7.567595)

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Tuesday, 13 April 2021

Should 0,5 Remain Alcohol Limit For Drivers in Croatia? Istrian Winemakers Worried of Wine Industry Hit

April 13, 2021 - This year or no later than 2023, the new National Road Safety Plan 2020 to 2030 should be implemented in practice. The plan is so far just a proposal, and one of the suggestions is to reduce the so far allowed 0.5 alcohol limit for drivers in Croatia to 0.0.

However, as Goran Rihelj reports for Hr.Turizam, Istrian winemakers think that 0.5 should remain the upper limit as they fear this will be another blow to winemakers and winegrowers.

„With a corona crisis that has no end in sight and an average drop in wine sales in Istrian wineries of 30 percent, this could be an additional blow to our sector. Istria has positioned itself as a top end-gastro destination with the quality of wine and offer, and we believe that our country should harmonize the National Road Safety Plan with European wine countries such as Italy and France, where 0,5 is allowed, while in Great Britain, for example, 0,8“, said Nikola Benvenuti, President of Vinistra.

Istrian winegrowers and winemakers point out they advocate responsible alcohol consumption but think 0.0 should be the law only for young drivers (defined by the current law of Traffic safety as a driver of 24 years of age) and professional drivers.

Prof. dr. sc. Mladen Boban from the Medical Faculty in Split, who has been researching the biological effects of wine on health for years, says this change would contradict other action plans and strategic documents with whom Croatia plans to increase awareness of the general population about the benefits of Mediterranian cuisine.

"It should not be forgotten that moderate drinking of wine with food is one of the pillars of this diet with the relatively largest contribution to the beneficial effects on health. In this context, it is important to note that in 2013, at the initiative of Croatia and six other Mediterranean countries, UNESCO inscribed the Mediterranean diet in the intangible cultural heritage of mankind. The World Health Organization accepts the Mediterranean diet as an effective strategy for the prevention of non-communicable chronic diseases as the leading causes of premature death globally", Concluded Professor Boban for Hr.turizam.

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In an article in 2019 Croatian Automobile Club magazine Revija HAK  reported that in the eight of the top fatal car crashes from 2016-2018, the leading cause was driving in the opposite direction, which happens due to driving too fast. The article also states that in the said period, 12.989 traffic accidents were caused by drivers under the influence of alcohol. In that number of traffic accidents, 235 persons were killed, and 1,709 were heavily injured, while light injuries due to "drink & drive" are owned to a number of 5,524 incidents. Statistically, drunk drivers are responsible for every fourth death, according to the article in Revija Hak.

In total, Croatia saw 883 traffic accidents with fatal consequences, and 955 people died in the 2016-2018 time spawn.

While winemakers and professor Boban advocate moderate drinking, sadly, the issue of actually respecting the current limit and personal limits of intoxication before sitting behind the wheel remains questionable for Croatian drivers. However, is reducing the allowed alcohol limit enough to make a difference remains unclear.

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Tuesday, 6 April 2021

Croatia's New Car Sales in March Up 53% Year-Over-Year

ZAGREB, 6 April, 2021 - A total of 4,165 new passenger cars were sold in Croatia in March 2021, an increase of 52.9% on the same month of last year, according to the data provided by the Promocija Plus market research agency.

The increase in sales is seen as the result of a more favourable buying environment than last spring when the country was under tighter restrictions to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

In the first three months of this year, Volkswagen sold the most new cars in Croatia - 1,810, accounting for 17.2% of total sales. It was followed by Škoda with 1,408 vehicles sold and a market share of 13.4%, Hyundai (414 vehicles, 5.8% share), Renault (595, 5.6%) and Dacia (591, 5.6%).

The Škoda Octavia remained the best selling model, with 214 units sold in March, ahead of the Dacia Duster (192 vehicles), the VW T-Cross ( 167), the VW Golf (143) and the VW T-Roc (137). Thirty-one Teslas, 18 Porches and 2 Ferraris were also sold last month.

Since the start of the year, 5,535 buyers (52.6%) bought petrol vehicles, 3,053 (29%) opted for diesel-fuelled vehicles, 141 (1.3%) chose electric cars, 323 (3.1%) purchased vehicles powered by natural gas, and 1,467 (13.9%) preferred hybrids.

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