Wednesday, 17 November 2021

Model of the Vukovar Water Tower Placed in Vukovarska Avenue, Split

November 17, 2021 - These days, numerous tributes have been carried out throughout the country to remember the victims in Vukovar and Škabrnja in 1991 during the Homeland War. In Split, school students have built an impressive model of the Vukovar water tower, which has been placed on the city's Vukovar avenue.

In memory of all the victims of Vukovar and Škabrnja, students and professors of the Craft and Technical School Split made a model of the Vukovar water tower, a symbol of suffering and resistance of the city during the Homeland War, reports Slobodna Dalmacija.

On the occasion of tomorrow's anniversary of the fall of Vukovar, a model of the Vukovar water tower was placed today at the beginning of the street named after that city. The Split-Dalmatia County also helped make this model.

''This is an example of how students who do practical things can be involved in this initiative, which marks one of the most significant events in our history, and that is the sacrifice and suffering of Vukovar. We strive for all schools to be involved in such activities, in order to pay tribute to all victims of the Homeland War, and especially the victims of Vukovar who are most responsible for the establishment of our independent and sovereign Croatia'', said the head of the Administrative Department for Education, Culture, Technical Culture Tomislav Đonlić.

Students of carpentry and electrical engineering participated in the creation of this model, while a group of designers conceived and designed the model. This school has been similarly participating in the celebration of this important date for several years. This year they decided to build a water tower and light it up.

''Fifteen students participated, and we made an electrical and wooden installation. It seems good to us and the idea is to do something every year to combine work and what should be celebrated in our country'', said the director of the Craft Technical School from Split Milivoj Kalebić.

The idea is a month old, and it took them two weeks to implement the draft. Students in the field of carpentry technicians and designers conceived a model, carpenters made a tower out of waterproof plywood, while electricians designed and made lighting. The water tower will take on its full splendor as soon as night falls.

This work of Split high school students is another reason to visit Vukovarska Street and light a candle on the eve of the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Vukovar and Škabrnja. The Split School of Crafts and Technology has been participating in a similar way in the celebration of this important date for several years. This year, they decided to build the Vukovar water tower, and one of the works that they did not do in previous years in memory of tomorrow is the bench in the school building.

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


Monday, 15 November 2021

Businesses in Vukovar-Srijem County Generate HRK 655.5 Million in Net Profit

ZAGREB, 15 Nov 2021 - Businesses in Vukovar-Srijem County generated a consolidated net profit of HRK 655.5 million in 2020, which is an increase of 7.2%, while gross investments in new long-term assets decreased by 43.7% to HRK 193.9 million, a report by the Financial Agency (FINA) shows.

A total of 2,273 businesses had their registered headquarters in Vukovar-Srijem County and employed 20,063 people, which is an increase of 310 or 1.6% year-on-year.

Entrepreneurs in the county generated a total revenue of HRK 22.7 billion in 2020, up 17.4% on the year, whereas total expenditure increased by 17.8% to HRK 22 billion.

Profit amounted to HRK 1 billion, which compared to the previous year was an increase of 10.2%, while losses jumped by 16.3% to HRK 359.3 million. The result is a net profit of HRK 655.5 million or an annual increase of 7.2%.

Exports rose by 39.2% to HRK 9.2 billion while imports fell by 9.6% to HRK 968.1 million, resulting in a trade surplus of HRK 8.3 billion.

The average net monthly wage amounted to  HRK 4,749, or 6.5% more than in 2019, and 20.5% less than the national average of HRK 5,971.

Of the two largest cities in the county, Vinkovci registered 688 enterprises with 8,267 employees and a loss of HRK 170.8 million, whereas Vukovar generated a total revenue of HRK 13 billion and a profit of HRK 516.3 million or net profit of HRK 404.2 million, FINA reported.

The Prvo Plinarsko Društvo gas company from Vukovar generated the highest profit in that period (HRK 226.6 million), the highest total revenue (9.8 billion) and the highest revenue from foreign sales (HRK 6.9 billion).

The Boso retail chain from Vinkovci had the largest number of employees (965) while the biggest loser in 2020 was the PIK Vinkovci Plus agriculture company,  generating a loss of HRK 70 million.

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

Saturday, 6 November 2021

HND: Journalist Subjected to Institutional Lynching Over Article on Vukovar

ZAGREB, 6 Nov 2021 - The Croatian Journalists Association (HND) on Saturday strongly condemned "the public and institutional lynching" of journalist Boris Dežulović over his article published on the website of N1 television in which he criticized the abuse of the plight of Vukovar in the 1991-1995 Homeland War for political purposes.

The HND said in a statement it was particularly worrying that public condemnations of the journalist were made by the Ministry of Veterans' Affairs, thus "institutionalizing the lynching of a journalist and eradication of freedom of speech."

"Our colleague Dežulović has received over a hundred serious threats and death threats over the last few days, some of which he has reported to the police," the HND said, calling on the state institutions to protect Dežulović from any form of intimidation, threat or persecution like any other journalist who encourages important public discussions such as this one.

"Dežulović's persecutors persistently and deliberately insinuate that his article was a gross insult to the sacrifice of Vukovar and its citizens. It is clear to anyone who read the article from beginning to end that the author's intention was only to criticize how state and local authorities treat Vukovar and how various political groups have been carefully mummifying it for decades to keep it in a state that suits their political interest, how its existence has been reduced to a site of special respect, rather than a city fit for living," the HND said.

Dežulović rightfully drew attention to the ongoing exodus of its residents because of neglect for the city and the absence of any political strategy other than a commemorative one, and he did so in the public interest, notably in the interest of its residents, the statement said.

The HND noted that Dežulović has been writing about this matter continually, recalling that he had received the prestigious European Press Prize for an article published on 19 November 2013 under the title "Vukovar - A Life-Size Monument to the Dead City".

The HND said that a topic such as the treatment of Vukovar 30 years after its destruction at the start of the war in 1991 must be open to public discussion. "Otherwise, we will allow multiple victimization of this city, which will not only remain captured in its commemorative role but will also be deprived of any discussion on the purpose and effects of such a role," the statement said.

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

Friday, 5 November 2021

Largest Croatia Fan Procession Expected before Russia World Cup Qualifier at Poljud

November 5, 2021 - The largest Croatia fan procession ever is expected ahead of the Croatia-Russia World Cup qualifier at Poljud Stadium in Split on November 14. 

All available tickets for the match between Croatia and Russia have been sold. A packed Poljud of about 33,000 fans will cheer on Croatia in an attempt to win first place and secure a spot in Qatar for the 2022 World Cup. That is, assuming Croatia wins in Malta three days earlier. 

Tickets went on sale October 25 at 1 pm, and hours later all tickets for the west and east stands were claimed. In the following days, tickets for the remaining sectors in the north and south stands were taken, sold from 80 to 200 kuna.

HNS announced that there will be no ticket sales at the box office and that in the coming days some free tickets may appear on the Internet if the customers who ordered them do not pay on time.

Fans who come to the match are invited to the Riva waterfront, where the largest Croatia fan procession in history, with between 20,000 and 30,000 people, is expected in honor of the 30th anniversary of Vukovar. Fans will head towards the stadium from 12:30 on November 14. Kickoff at Poljud is scheduled for 3 pm. 

All fans coming to the stadium must have an EU digital covid certificate with a valid QR code to be checked at the entrance. Certificates of vaccination or illness or various test results will not be recognized.

Children under the age of 12 do not have to have a certificate if they are accompanied by a parent or guardian who has a valid certificate and a ticket, and HNS will provide rapid antigen testing to fans who do not have a digital certificate.

Tickets for the match in Malta, which will be played on November 11 at 8:45 pm at the Ta'Qali National Stadium, went on sale from Thursday at the price of 80 kuna.

In Malta, however, only people with full vaccination against the coronavirus or those who have recovered from Covid AND have received at least one dose of the vaccine are allowed. This does not only apply to children aged five to 11, who need a negative PCR test not older than 72 hours.

Source: 24 Sata

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Government Approves Concession Termination of Vukovar Free Zone

November the 4th, 2021 - The Croatian Government has approved the concession termination of the Vukovar Free Zone, bringing the number of them located on Croatian territory down.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Brnic writes, in terms of the EU, Croatia is at the very top in terms of the number of free zones - until last week it had eleven, with three being in the process of being ''deleted'' for some time now, and according to the new concession, the Vukovar Free Zone will also join that listdecentia .

The request to terminate the concession came from Vukovar itself, more precisely from the company Filir, which, along with the Fund for Reconstruction and Development of the City of Vukovar, is also the founder of the Danube Free Zone (otherwise known as the Vukovat Free Zone). The 25-year free zone concession was approved back in 2003 and would have been valid until February 2028, but its founders and users have concluded that they no longer want to operate under that regime.

As a reason for revoking the concession, they stated "the current economic situation caused by the coronavirus pandemic, and the need for storage and production facilities in order to expand business."

These reasons and the request for termination of the concession are supported by all six beneficiaries, for whom, as stated in the Government decision, the conditions of business outside the free zone regime will be more acceptable than business in the free zone regime.

One of the explanations is that out of 290 million kuna of revenue in that zone last year, only 2 percent was generated through actual exports. If we compare the data on the operations of all free zones, which was recently the item on the table of the Government, in the last five years in the Vukovar Free Zone there were no major deviations in the amount of revenue, the number of users or the share of exports in terms of revenue.

When it comes to the question of just how further activities will take place after the termination of the concession, so far there's no information from the owner Filir, who is the majority owner of the Vukovar Free Zone with a share of 70 percent.

Doing business in zones of this type brings certain benefits, from tax and customs treatment to lower levies at the local level, benefits in terms of utility fees and taxes from/on salaries. The annual concession fee amounted to 2 percent of revenues generated by users, half of which goes to the state and half to the city budget, but last year the Government additionally abolished the obligation to pay this fee.

Spatially, the Vukovar Free Zone was ''halved'' six years ago, because users requested that the area it covers to be reduced from 21,000 to 7.6 thousand square metres, and of that area, just over 3,000 metres remain operational.

Although the people of Vukovar cite difficult conditions due to the coronavirus pandemic as the reason for the termination of the concession, the Vukovar Free Zone recorded the smallest "earthquake" of all zones in Croatia last year - the revenues of its six users fell by 0.48 percent and the company ended the year with 3.23 percent higher profit, totalling 47.6 million kuna.

Back in 2020, a total of 74 enterprises operated in all Croatian free zones, two more than a year earlier, with 2.6 thousand workers, about 200 less than back in pre-pandemic 2019. Their total revenues amounted to 1.55 billion kuna, which marks an approximate 8 percent lower result than in the year before the pandemic, while profit was more than a third lower, reaching 110 million kuna last year.

For more, check out our dedicated business section.

Sunday, 31 October 2021

Delegation of Ministries and County Lays Wreath at Vukovar Memorial Cemetery

ZAGREB, 31 Oct, 2021 - A joint delegation of the Defence Ministry, the Interior Ministry, the War Veterans Ministry and the Vukovar-Srijem County on Sunday laid a wreath and lit candles at the Memorial Cemetery of Homeland War Victims in Vukovar on the occasion of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day.

The delegation was led by Defence Minister Mario Banožić and included Vukovar-Srijem County Prefect Damir Dekanić, who called for unity.

"With a joint wreath we send a message of unity, a message that no one can joke with or belittle those who gave their lives for Vukovar, Vinkovci, the entire Slavonia, a message to all authorities in Croatia that we must keep together if we want to resist challenges which await us in the coming period, especially in terms of keeping people in this area," said Dekanić.

Asked by reporters why there were no representatives of the City of Vukovar in the delegation, Dekanić said that "it is simply a joint agreement and a joint message from the ministries and the county" and that he, as well as other county representatives, would attend protocol celebrations of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day wherever they manage to.

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Monday, 18 October 2021

30 Years of Minefield War Crime Commemorated in Lovas

ZAGREB, 18 Oct 2021 - The people of Lovas on Monday laid wreaths and lit candles at a monument to 21 locals forced into a minefield by Serb paramilitaries and the former Yugoslav Army 30 years ago today.

On 18 October 1991, a few days after entering Lovas, aggressor forces chose a group of 51 residents and forced them into a minefield, where 21 were killed and 14 wounded.

"I hope that those responsible will be brought to justice one day," said Vukovar-Srijem County head Damir Dekanić.

Lovas Municipality head Tanja Cirba said 89 Lovas residents were killed in the Homeland War and that one of the most horrific crimes took place in that minefield. "On that day, another 23 Lovas residents were killed in their houses, garages, and basements."

Justice for the Lovas crimes is far from being served because those who organized and ordered them have not been punished, said Staša Zajović of the Women in Black association from Belgrade.

"We are very worried because dealing with the past in Serbia has been stopped and strong propaganda glorifying war criminals is at work," she said.

In 2007, the Belgrade District Court opened an investigation into 14 people suspected of war crimes against 69 Lovas civilians and an indictment was filed.

In 2012, 14 were found guilty for the deaths of 41 civilians and sentenced to prison terms ranging from four to 20 years. An appellate court quashed the sentence in 2013. A new indictment covered 32 civilian victims due to the deaths of five defendants and a lack of evidence.

In the retrial, the Belgrade Appellate Court acquitted Željko Krnjajić and Milan Devčić and reduced the sentences against Saša Stojanović, Darko Perić, Radovan Vlajković, Radisav Josipović, Jovan Dimitrijević, and Zoran Kosijer. The sentences were reduced to three to six years.

The victims' families and the Lovas municipal authorities are dissatisfied and bitter at such low sentences.

For more about politics in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 9 October 2021

Honey Bottling Plant Opens in Vukovar

ZAGREB, 9 Oct, 2021 - The Api Green company opened a honey bottling plant in the eastern town of Vukovar on Saturday, the first such plant to be operating according to the HACCP standard in Vukovar-Srijem County.

The plant was opened in the Vukovar Business Incubator as part of Honey Days.

"Beekeepers will now be able to increase the number of beehives and sign a contract with Api Green on honey delivery. The honey delivered to the bottling plant will be analysed and labelled as honey from Croatian apiaries," the head of the Vukovar 91 beekeepers' association, Ivan Dumenčić, said.

HACCP is a system that helps identify and control food safety risks in the food processing industry.

The plant has a maximum bottling capacity of one tonne per day, and Api Green invested nearly €25,000 in it.

"In order to improve the quality of honey, Api Green will purchase honey from registered beekeepers, check it and put it on the market," the company's CEO Božena Miličević said.

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

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Thursday, 30 September 2021

Vukovar Franciscan Monastery Virtual Tour: New Screen Tourism Addition

September 30, 2021 - The Vukovar Franciscan Monastery Virtual Tour is a new addition allowing people to get better acquainted with this amazing tourist site even if you cannot travel to this Eastern Croatian town.

We wish you a pleasant tour filled with God's grace - says the robotic female voice as you click this link and start exploring Vukovar's Franciscan Monastery online. The recently launched option of 360° sightseeing this iconic location in the Eastern town of Vukovar in Slavonia (referred to as the ''Hero City'' due to its suffering in the Homeland War) is an excellent innovation for what's become known as "screen tourism". Whatever your reasons for not being able to physically get to Vukovar at the moment, the Vukovar Franciscan Monastery Virtual Tour is always ready for you to take part.

''The QtouR virtual guide is implemented in the entire complex of the Franciscan monastery in Vukovar, covering over 3,500 square metres. The virtual tour offers visitors an online tour of the museum over two floors, the church, the script, the bell tower with the watchtower, the wine cellar…'' listed the website.

Indeed, with this app (its development helped by the Croatian Ministry of Culture), you can explore the Franciscan monastery from every angle you'd usually be allowed to see during your visit. You can either navigate with your mouse or mousepad or even your keyboard to choose which direction you want to go in. From exploring indoors to heading out into the back yard, you can even soak up the breathtaking view of the nearby Danube river.

''Franciscans have had their presence noted in Slavonia and Srijem ever since the 14th century. Sadly, during the Turkish (Ottoman) occupation of these parts, every historical record of their activities was destroyed. Some traces can still be found in various documents of the Franciscan order and in the Vatican archives, however. What we know for sure is that the Franciscans of the Bosne Srebrene (Silver Bosnia) were the only messengers, bishops, priests, and guardians of the Catholic faith in these areas under Ottoman rule,'' reads the official website of Vukovar's Franciscan monastery.

Both the monastery and the church are named after saints Filip and Jakov (Phillip and Jacob). The church was completed in 1733 while the monastery was built in 1736.

''The monastery, along with the church with its monumental architecture, has been home to priceless artistic and cultural treasures for centuries now. It possessed a rich inventory and a library with rare editions along with a small picture gallery. By the sheer complexity of its heritage, it was placed amongst the most valuable memorial sites in continental Croatia,'' explains the monastery's official website.

The history of Vukovar is often clouded by the tragedies of the Homeland War, but while that is and will forever be of enormous significance, there is much more to it than that.

As TCN wrote, the history of Vukovar runs much deeper than the horrendous events which took place at the end of the 20th century, and Croatian historical and social sciences are more than aware of the fact. This was evident in the presentation of the book ''The Cultural Identity of Vukovar – A Contribution to Investigating Heritage and Successors''.  

Additionally, as evidenced by the VukovART festival earlier this year, we can see that this town at the very border of Eastern Croatia and Serbia has much more to offer than just the memory of death, war crimes and misery brought about by bullets, hate, and war.

Learn more about Vukovar in our TC guide

For more about history in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Vukovar Ethno Fair Marks the Beginning of Autumn From September 24 to 26

September 19, 2021 - On the last weekend of September, locals and visitors will be able to welcome autumn in the best way at the Vukovar Ethno Fair, enjoying the best products, crafts, and traditions of the city.

From September 24 to 26, the city of Vukovar will hold its 14th Ethno Fair, in which the best of its local products, crafts, gastronomy, music, and folklore will be displayed, reports Turističke Priče. Both city residents and tourists will witness the arrival of autumn feeling the true essence of Vukovar and its people.


(Photo: Vukovar Tourist Board Official Facebook Page)

The focus will again be on the fair of traditional products and arts and crafts, handicrafts and antiques, and food and beverage producers, where products and services are exhibited by producers from the entire Vukovar-Srijem County, but also Croatia.

We believe that in the three days of the fair, everyone will find something for themselves. Children will be able to participate in one of the five announced workshops in which they will make wooden toys, flower wreaths, shape clay…


(Photo: Vukovar Tourist Board Official Facebook Page)

Lovers of tradition will enjoy the richness of folk costumes and performances by cultural and artistic societies, both domestic and guest. Namely, after the performance of KUD Kolo from Vukovar on Friday, the Croatian Cultural and Cultural Music Society Danube will host on Saturday the traditional 13th Meeting of folklore societies "The Danube to its city". On Sunday, the folklore part of the Fair will be rounded off by the "International Folklore Festival Zagreb - City of Vukovar".


(Photo: Vukovar Tourist Board Official Facebook Page)

In Vukovar, you will be able to try gastronomic specialties from all over Croatia, as part of the fifth gastronomic event "Tastes of Croatia", but also to refresh yourself with Vukovarsko and other beers with a cultural and artistic program with beer tasting on the "Vukovar OktoBierFest".

The music part of the program of the Vukovar Ethno Fair will be opened on Friday by tamburitza players, the Tamburitza ensemble Sremci, and on Saturday visitors will be able to enjoy the performance of the popular and favorite Vanna. Tamburitza players will play on the last evenings of the Fair, but this time visitors will be entertained by the band Libero.


(Photo: Vukovar Tourist Board Official Facebook Page)

On Sunday, September 26, as part of the Vukovar Ethno Fair, the Day of National Minorities of Vukovar-Srijem County will be marked. On the occasion of World Tourism Day, the Guides Association organizes a city tour on the same day, accompanied by costumed guides called Tourist in their city.

Therefore, book the last weekend in September for Vukovar, which always offers you more than you expect.

To learn more about the city of Vukovar, visit Total Croatia's complete guide, Vukovar in a page. Now in your language!

For more, check out our dedicated travel section.

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