Sunday, 22 May 2022

Company Invests €6.6m in Microalgae Production in Croatia

ZAGREB, 22 May 2022 - The company called Phyox, specialised in production of microalgae, substances rich in minerals, vitamins, antioxidants and unsaturated fatty acids, has invested 6.6 million euros in a microalgae production project in the city of Novska, the Večernji List daily reported on Sunday.

The project will enable the commercial production of microalgae for the pharmaceutical industry.

The project has already gone through the stages of laboratory tests and trial production and the production of microalgae for commercial purposes is expected to start soon. 

There are plans to produce 40 tonnes annually.

According to the information on the web site of this company owned by four Croatian and German partners, "Phyox d.d. was created by combining the competences, experience and resources of its founders who after many years of technology development, decided to implement their microalgae production project in Croatia."

"Microalgae (Phytoplankton) are microorganisms that produce oxygen (Oxygenium) through photosynthesis, which is how the name Phyox was created."

Microalgae are with over two billion years of existence considered to be the oldest living cellular organisms on Earth.

The Večernji List daily quoted the company's  senior executives Franjo Orešković and Bernd Hermann as saying that the project was well accepted by the local authorities in Novska, during the mayorship of Marin Piletić.

Therefore, the company decided to set up the project in the industrial zone of Novska, 90 kilometres east of Zagreb.

Phyox is focused on the production of microalgae suitable for use in the food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.

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

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Social Policy Minister Set to Strengthen Foster Care, Supported Housing

ZAGREB, 22 May 2022 -  Marin Piletić who became the Labour, Pension System, Family and Social Policy Minister in late April, has said in an interview for Hina that the priority of the social policy of this Croatian cabinet would be supporting children without adequate parental care.

Piletić said in the interview which Hina published on Sunday that the focus would be on scaling down the institutional accommodation for children and enhance fostering. To this aim, his ministry will launch a nation-wide campaign promoting foster parenting for the aim of child well-being.

The minister presented some statistical data showing progress in adoption and foster care.

Last year, 145 children were adopted, which has been the highest number in a year to date. So far in 2022, 58 children have been adopted.

The registry of prospective adoptive children has recently included 220 children that have met all the criteria for their adoption.

The minister also promised the streamlining of the procedures for foster care and for adoption, and underscored that the overhauling of the social welfare system is aimed at making this system more efficient.

The ministry is going to set up a working group tasked with analysing the state of affairs in  institutionalised homes and in providers of accommodation for beneficiaries of social welfare.

Concrete solutions will soon be defined, said Piletić underscoring the advantages of supported housing. 

Supported housing is typically defined as a housing service where housing, support and/or care services are provided to help people to live as independently as possible.

"Croatia and Europe have opted for the process of deinstitutionalisation, and this completely changes the principles of doing business in social welfare services", said Piletić.

"The process will take some time and the policy of deinstitutionalisation and strengthening social mentoring and other services in social welfare are some of the priorities of this government, and sizeable funds are envisaged for this purpose under the 2027 European Social Fund", he explained.

"We in cooperation with services providers and institutions are defining the best locations for the specialised supported housing and we can expect the employment of necessary staff in the coming period as well as the increase of the capacities in this form of housing", he added.

The minister recalled that the amended law on foster care had additionally strengthened the status of foster carers.

There are 2,500 foster carers, with a half of them caring for children and a half who are caregivers for adults, being eligible to higher allowances under the amended legislation.

"They are also entitled to grants to cushion off the energy price hikes", the minister added.

For more, check out our politics section.

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Croatian Stojković Defends European Title in Taekwondo, Mikulić Wins His 4th Title

ZAGREB, 22 May 2022 - Croatia's Lena Stojković on Saturday defended her European title in the F-46kg category at the European Taekwondo Championships in Manchester after beating Turkish taekwondo practitioner Emine Gogebakan.

The European Taekwondo Championships & the Para-European Taekwondo Championships  took place in this British city from 19 to 22 May.

Another Croatian athlete, Toni Kanaet, on Saturday won the bronze medal in the Men -80 kg category.

 Thus, Croatia's taekwondo practitioners have bagged seven medals in Manchester.

Competing in the Para-European Taekwondo Championships, Croatia's Ivan Mikulić won his fourth European title on Saturday evening.

This Croatian taekwondo practitioner is thus the European champion in the  K44 +80kg category.

Mikulić, who won the silver medal in the men's +75 kg event at the 2020 Summer Paralympics in Tokyo, has so far grabbed 12 medals from big international contests.

His coach Mladen Tomić said that the gold in Manchester was the fourth European gold which Mikulić had won so far.

To read more about sports in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Condor Rijeka and Dubrovnik Flights Resume, Smartwings Prague-Dubrovnik Flights Canceled

May 22, 2022 - The latest flight news to Croatia as Condor Rijeka and Dubrovnik flights resumed this weekend, and Smartwings canceled Prague-Dubrovnik flights for the summer. 

On May 21, the German leisure airline Condor resumed traffic to two Croatian airports - Rijeka and Dubrovnik, reports Croatian Aviation. Condor thus resumed traffic to Rijeka and Dubrovnik on four international lines from Dusseldorf and Frankfurt.

Rijeka Airport

Rijeka Airport is already connected to Frankfurt by Lufthansa, which currently operates on this route once a week, every Saturday. On May 25, the airline will introduce a second weekly flight, on Wednesdays.

In addition to Lufthansa, Condor will operate on this route once a week, also on Saturdays, until the end of September, so Rijeka Airport has a regular connection with Frankfurt three times a week. On the first Condor flight from Frankfurt, 103 passengers arrived in Rijeka, while 33 of them traveled from Rijeka.

Condor also launched the announced line between Rijeka and Dusseldorf, which will run twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 146 passengers arrived in Rijeka on the first Condor flight, while 22 of them traveled from Kvarner to Düsseldorf. Rijeka is connected to Düsseldorf by a regular Eurowings line, which launched yesterday. It should also be mentioned that Eurowings is introducing a line from Stuttgart, and today from Berlin and Hamburg to Rijeka.

Dubrovnik Airport

Condor resumed traffic to Dubrovnik Airport, also with lines from Dusseldorf and Frankfurt, and both will be in traffic once a week, every Saturday.

Dubrovnik is connected to Frankfurt by regular lines of Croatia Airlines and Lufthansa, while the line between Dubrovnik and Dusseldorf, in addition to Condor, is also operated by Eurowings.

Furthermore, Croatian Aviation reports that Czech airline Smartwings has withdrawn all flights previously announced for this summer season on the seasonal route between Prague and Dubrovnik. The airline will operate exclusively to Split.

The Prague-Dubrovnik line was supposed to operate daily during the peak season. 

Smartwings will operate between Prague and Split this summer and the line is already in traffic. The number of weekly flights will gradually increase from four to seven flights a week, and flights between the two cities are planned until October 9 this year.

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

Sunday, 22 May 2022

HNL Round 36 Recap: 2021/22 Croatian Championship Comes to an End

May 22, 2022 - The 36th and final round of the Croatian First League was held on May 20 and 21. Dinamo already clinched the title last weekend, though the season ended with the Dinamo-Hajduk derby at Maksimir Stadium in Zagreb. Here is our HNL round 36 recap. 

Istra 1961 v. Slaven Belupo (3:1)

Istra and Belupo opened the 36th round on Friday, May 20, in Pula. 

While the first half went without goals, Beljo put Istra ahead in the 48th minute for 1:0. Bande made it 2:0 six minutes later. Balgojevic was shown his second yellow in the 71st minute, forcing Istra to play with a man down for the remainder of the match. Zvonarek made it 2:1 in the 76th minute, but Beljo scored again in the 4th minute of stoppage time for the final 3:1.

 

Istra ended the season in 9th place with 31 points, while Belupo finished in 7th with 36. 

Lokomotiva v. Sibenik (2:1)

Lokomotiva and Sibenik met in Zagreb on Friday, May 20. Kulenovic scored for 1:0 in the 6th minute before Maric made it 2:0 in the 29th. Delic scored for 2:1 in the 41st minute, which was the final score. 

 

Lokomotiva ended the season in 5th place with 49 points, while Sibenik finished in 8th with 32. 

Rijeka v. Dragovoljac (1:0)

Rijeka and Dragovoljac met on Saturday, May 21 at Rujevica. 

The only goal of the match came in the 2nd minute when Obregon scored for 1:0. 

 

Rijeka ended the season in 4th place with 65 points, while Dragovoljac will be relegated from the First League, finishing last with 19 points. 

Gorica v. Osijek (1:1)

Gorica and Osijek met in Velika Gorica on Saturday, May 21.

Jovicic put Gorica ahead in the 30th minute for 1:0 at the half. Bartolec equalized for 1:1 in the 68th which was the final score. 

 

Gorica ended the season in 6th place with 45 points, while Osijek finished in 3rd with 69. 

Dinamo v. Hajduk (3:1)

Dinamo and Hajduk closed out the 36th round and the 2021/22 season at Maksimir on Saturday, May 21. 

While Dinamo already clinched the title in the previous round, the Eternal Derby between these two clubs is always played for pride. Around 2,000 Hajduk fans were meant to be in attendance, though they remained outside the stadium in protest of a new Makrsimir rule regarding banners. 

Petkovic put Dinamo ahead for 1:0 in the 53rd minute. Livaja's goal was called back by VAR in the 68th minute, though he came back to equalize in the 4th minute of stoppage time for 1:1. Dinamo ended up scoring two goals in the final two minutes - with Orsic and Baturina making it 3:1. 

 

Dinamo ended the season in 1st place with 79 points, while Hajduk finished in 2nd with 72. 

You can see the full HNL standings HERE.

To read more about sports in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

 

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Croatian Language Scholarship: Public Call for 2022/23 Semesters Announced

May 22, 2022 - The Central State Office for Croats outside the Republic of Croatia has announced a public call for the Croatian language scholarship for the 2022/2023 semesters. This year, for the first time, those interested will be able to choose the City of Zadar as their preference of location when studying the Croatian language.

With the aim of learning the Croatian language, learning about Croatian culture and preserving national identity, promoting unity and cooperation, and returning emigrated Croats and their descendants to the country, the Central State Office for Croats Abroad announced a public call for scholarships for Croatian language learning in Croatia for the academic year 2022/2023.

The first period of the Croatian language scholarship, called the winter semester, runs from the beginning of October 2022 to the end of January 2023. The second, the summer semester, runs from the beginning of March 2023 to the end of June 2023. The participants, when applying, can choose between studying for one or both semesters.

Who can apply?

Members of the Croatian people, their spouses as well as friends of the Croatian people and the Republic of Croatia who nurture the Croatian identity and promote the Croatian cultural community. They must be over 18, they must have completed at least high school and reside outside of the Republic of Croatia. They can also have resided in the Republic of Croatia for no longer than three years as of the date of the publication of this public invitation.

How and until when can one apply?

The application for this public invitation is to be submitted exclusively in electronic form via the e-application form available HERE. The deadline for submitting applications is June 19, 2022.

In which cities can you study the Croatian language scholarship?

The course is being organised by the Faculty of Philosophy in Zagreb, Split, Rijeka, Osijek, and the University of Zadar. The scholarship implies regular attendance at classes in the Republic of Croatia in the place where the course is held.

Among other things, the canidadte must indicate their choice of language learning semester in their application (winter, summer, or both), as well as their desired place for attending the course.

For more information about the Croatian language scholarship in Croatia, write me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject ''Croatian language scholarship''.

All other details are listed in the public invitation and the attached instructions. In case of the need for additional information, candidates can send an inquiry to the e-mail address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. no later than the expiration of the above deadline or in the same period call: +385 (0) 1 / 6444-683, working on the day from 10.00 - 15.00.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Good News for Drivers: No Croatian Road Toll Increase This Summer

May the 21st, 2022 - Good news for drivers from both home and abroad this summer as Croatian road toll fees aren't set to increase. There will also be an innovative new way of paying which hopes to streamline the process.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, according to a report from Net.hr, this year, just like the previous two pandemic-dominated years, in order to support the tourist season, the seasonal Croatian road toll increase of 10 percent will not be introduced.

The move comes as welcome news as we approach summer and as the cost to drive continues to be an issue for road users, with inflation continuing to force fuel prices up and making a full tank an expensive commodity.

"The measure of assistance to bus carriers also remains in force, meaning the application of the additional discount of seven percent for EURO 6 vehicles is being extended, which with the existing discount of 42.4 percent, amounts to almost 50 percent of the Croatian road toll price," they explained from HAC when dicussing this summer's plans for the country's motorways.

Hrvatske autoceste (Croatian roads) confirmed that activities are underway to prepare the public procurement of a new toll collection system to make things easier, as well.

"A tender will be announced at some point this year, and according to current estimates, the system could be completed by the year 2024," they stated from HAC.

The new toll collection system will be based on ''free flow'', without stopping any of the vehicles using the roads, and will be carried out with contactless payment methods. The system will enable a simpler and more technologically modern way of paying Croatian road toll fees, and will also increase the flow of traffic at toll stations so as not to cause traffic jams, bottlenecks or delays.

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

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Croatian Government Incentives for Electric Vehicle Purchases Begin

May the 22nd, 2022 - Croatian Government incentives for the purchase of electric vehicles have begun, but precisely how does one get to the magical 70,000 kuna figure?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Environmental Protection Fund is preparing this year's public call for co-financing the purchase of more energy efficient vehicles, which has been very popular with Croatian customers for years. Vecernji list learns that a public call will be published in June.

"In 2022, the Fund provided 108.3 million kuna to encourage the purchase of energy-efficient vehicles. Compared to last year, we've increased the total budget for both people and companies, which will now amount to 103.3 million kuna, last year we provided 90 million kuna, while the remaining budget of 5 million kuna is intended for the public sector. The method of application for both people and for companies will be the same as it was last year.

At the end of May, we intend to publish a public call for expressions of interest towards car distributors, and in June, a public call for co-financing the purchase of electric vehicles for people and companies. The amount of Croatian Government incentives per vehicle won't change this year and will amount to anywhere between 20 and 70 thousand kuna, depending on the category of vehicle,'' they commented from the Fund for Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency.

This means that this year, too, the implementation of Croatian Government incentives for the purchase of environmentally friendly vehicles will be carried out according to the procedure which was initially introduced last year, which has proven to be more efficient than the previous practice. To be more specific, last year, a new, changed procedural method was introduced, according to which the famous ''first come, first serve'' method was avoided, ie the model according to which Croatian Government incentives were only given to those who managed to apply first.

Aside from the fact that such a system was criticised by both people and by numerous legal entities, it was also unsuccessful because in the end, only 50 percent of the people to whom the incentive was approved, actually ended up using the incentive for their purchase.

Under this new system, people and legal entities no longer apply to the public call directly, but through authorised motor vehicle dealers headquartered here in Croatia. As such, this year, the Fund will first announce a public call to which dealers will be able to apply, who will then register their points of sale and available vehicle models through the Fund's application. At their points of sale, people and legal entities will receive an offer for a vehicle and the dealers will apply for Croatian Government incentives for them.

Those who want incentives will still have to be quick off the mark, meaning they'll need to prepare before the announcement of the public call, which means they'll have to fully study the offer of vehicles for which they can apply for an incentive and which are offered on the Croatian market, and there are more and more of them as time goes on.

The procedure after a successful incentive reservation is, therefore, just like it was last year. The buyer will be obliged to pay a minimum advance of 7 percent of the requested funds to the Fund, for example, if an incentive of 70,000 kuna is requested, the trader will have to be paid 4,900 kuna. The deadline for delivery and use of Croatian Government incentives will be nine months from the approval of co-financing.

By far the most sought-after co-financed vehicles last year were electric cars, for which 70,000 kuna will be available this year as well. For example, last year the funds were reserved for 1943 vehicles, of which 1785 were electric, 157 were plug-in hybrids and one was a natural gas vehicle. For plug-in hybrids (plug-in rechargeable hybrids) it will still be possible to get 40,000 kuna in incentives, and for electric vehicles of the L1-L7 category (mopeds, motorcycles, light quadricycles) 20,000 kuna will be available.

For more, check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Only 20 Croatian Noble Pen Shells Left Alive in Adriatic Sea

May the 22nd, 2022 - There are only twenty living Croatian noble pen shells left in this country's part of the Adriatic Sea. A very important project is now underway to try to stop this shellfish from entering the history books entirely, from which it would likely never return.

As Morski/Bruna Rizvanovic writes, the noble pen shell (Pinna nobilis) is a strictly protected species in the Republic of Croatia, and is on the Red List of critically endangered species due to mass deaths caused by parasites (Haplosporidium pinnae) and bacteria (Mycobacterium sp.). The first confirmation of the outbreak in the Croatian part of the Adriatic Sea was received back in 2019. The contagion spread and affected the entire Croatian part of the Adriatic. Unfortunately, the plague did not bypass Lastovo's surrounding waters either.

The goal of the project entitled "The conservation of the noble pen shell (Pinna nobilis) in the Adriatic Sea" is to preserve and save this stunning Mediterranean endemic species of shellfish from extinction, and there are very, very few living specimens of the Croatian noble pen shell left to speak of. This praiseworthy project is being coordinated by the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of the Republic of Croatia, and is being funded by the Energy Efficiency Fund.

The project funds are intended for the implementation of in situ activities, such as setting up collectors for larvae, searching the seabed for living Croatian noble pen shell individuals and ensuring their full protection with the use of cages, shielding them from predators and anthropogenic impact, as well as further education. It also includes ex situ activities such as the placement of live individuals in controlled systems, their maintenance, and running laboratory diagnostics.

Currently, there are about 20 living Croatian noble pen shell individuals in this country's part of the Adriatic Sea, and marine searches for more are still ongoing. This week, the research team of the Croatian Veterinary Institute and the staff of the Lastovo Islands Nature Park have set up collectors to receive larvae in the waters surrounding Lastovo, which will be inspected in October. The collectors installed at six locations are located at a depth of 10 to 15 metres below the surface and are marked on with red buoys. If you spot them on your sailing route, be careful and make sure to totally avoid them.

If a Croatian noble pen shell is discovered and is potentially alive, you should very, very gently pass your hand over it through the water, and if it is alive, the shell will close itself in response to the disturbance. Care should be taken not to touch the individual and to disturb it as little as possible. You should then report your finding and its location by clicking this link.

Any intentional extraction of living or dead individuals is strictly prohibited by Croatian law.

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

Sunday, 22 May 2022

German Lurssen Group Opens Rijeka Engineering Centre

May the 22nd, 2022 - The German Lurssen Group has opened its Rijeka engineering centre, which will come very handy when it comes to the development of ideas and design.

As Morski writes, the German Lurssen Group, which specialises in the design and production of luxury megayachts, has opened the doors of its brand new Rijeka engineering centre. It will develop ideas and design some of the most modern and expensive vessels in the world there, and after the Rijeka engineering centre, the German group has announced further investments.

Since entering the Croatian market just a couple of years ago, the German Lurssen Group has become one of the most frequently mentioned names in all of Kvarner when it comes to investments. It first became the majority owner of the largest hotel chain in Opatija - Liburnia Riviera Hotels, and then chose Rijeka as a centre of excellence for the development and design of vessels, hence the new centre.

''This is a city in which we've found highly motivated and quality employees. This is where we see great potential in terms of engineering, as well as the development of tourism,'' said Peter Lurssen, the co-owner of the Lurssen Group.

Hundreds of Croatian experts are already working on projects that represent the future of the maritime industry, according to a report from HRT.

''Our people aren't heading abroad, they're staying here and carrying out high value-added jobs as parts of international teams and we believe that this is a great thing for our region,'' said Teuta Duletic, Executive Director of the brand new Lurssen Design Centre in Kvarner.

Yet another capital investment in this sense can also be boasted of, as in cooperation with ACI, they're also working on the construction of a nautical port, worth more than 360 million kuna in total.

''These are significant investments and will certainly affect the quality of the nautical offer in Croatia. We've already outlined this through the strategy of sustainable tourism development,'' emphasised Nikolina Brnjac, Minister of Tourism.

''Over the next five years, the face of the City of Rijeka will change, especially when viewed from the sea. Let's look at this investment as an investment in highly educated people, so it's definitely something good that is happening in Rijeka,'' said Marko Filipovic, Mayor of Rijeka.

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

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