Better Exporting Could Raise Croatia’s Life Standards

Lauren Simmonds

The numbers speak volumes about the importance of exports and exporters.

As Ana Blaskovic/Darko Bicak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 16th of June, 2018, in a constantly changing world, exports and their exporters represent an economic branch that can help raise the general living standards and encourage GDP growth in Croatia.

In order for the country’s exports to generate higher rates of growth, emphasis should be placed on exporting what would be referred to commonly as “real products and services”, as was the message from the thirteenth Croatian Exporters Convention, which was held in Zagreb on Friday.

“Yesterday, we talked about globalisation, today we’re facing protectionism and strengthening instability, so we’re expected to be excellent forecasters,” said Končar’s leader and the president of the Croatian exporters association. He recalled the new business conditions in the rapidly changing business world, from artificial intelligence to rapid robotic development, citing PwC’s forecasts that in the future, not one of the fifty largest companies in the world will be from the European Union.

Global GDP grew last year at a rate of 3.6 percent, but the slowing down of the international exchange is significant. “We’re concerned that Croatia is importing the most among all EU countries in relation to its GDP. This negative balance with the European Union and the world is growing, only in the EU we have a de-balance of eight billion euro, and we’re exporting cheaply and importing expensively,” stated Bago.

As previously mentioned, the numbers speak for themselves when it comes to the significance of exporting. Exporters in the Republic of Croatia accounted for 62 percent of all investments, and 73 percent of all investment in development.

For the very first time, the pharmaceutical industry is experiencing a positive balance, while with the food industry, the trend is very much the other way around.

“What would it be like without the government measures in Agrokor? The revenue of the group fell by five percent, and they’ve used foreign chains with increased imports of 1.2 to 1.3 billion euro. Although exporters have recorded revenue growth, their profits have been reduced. If there were no government measures in Agrokor, the impact on the economy would have been dramatically greater,” Bago added.

The association of Croatian exporters have traditionally awarded their Golden Key Award to their most successful members. Valamar is the best big company, and Varaždin’s Solvis is the most successful exporter among middle-sized companies.

The best small company for 2017 was MCZ from Labin. The most innovative exporter is the pharmaceutical company is JGL from Rijeka. Vetropack Straža is the best exporter in Italy, and Pliva holds the same title for Germany. AD Plastik was awarded for its exports to Slovenia, Podravka to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Selk to Austria, DS Smith to Serbia, Omco Croatia to the USA, and Zito to Hungary. LPT took the award for the French market, and Končar – Power Transformers for the Czech Republic.

The Golden Key for achievement in Asia and Pacific markets was received by Harburg-Freudenberger from Belišće, and for the African market, Sharif. In addition to the Czech Republic, Končar was also the most successful on the Pan-American market. The Market Growth Award was acquired by Belupo, and the Golden Key for other European markets went to Elektro-kontact.


Click here for the original article by Ana Blaskovic and Darko Bicak for Poslovni Dnevnik


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