Croatian Capital Takes Unenviable Place on List of Best Cities for Business

Lauren Simmonds

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As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ana Blaskovic writes, if entrepreneurs and business owners could choose anywhere in the world to start up a business, the Croatian capital city of Zagreb would be the 72nd choice of 75 cities. Unimpressive indeed. In a competition of 200 global capitals, Zagreb was shortlisted according to the Index of the Best Cities for Entrepreneurial Success with 52 out of a possible 100 points that measure what a particular place offers for success.

It won’t come as much of a surprise to anyone that business owners would prefer to start a business in the British capital of London, a city which allows for the best factors; from the health of the technological and digital ecosystem, economic freedoms, the availability of human capital, the range of funding to government measures to help during a crisis such as the current pandemic.

Those who would choose the British capital were closely followed by those who chose New York, San Francisco, Sydney. Aside from London, a few other European cities are high on the list, Berlin is 9th place, Paris 12th, and in the top 30 are Munich, Madrid, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Milan, Zurich, Edinburgh and Brussels. Of Croatia’s neighbours, above Zagreb come Ljubljana, Budapest and Bucharest.

A ranking in which only Lima, Bratislava and Sofia are worse than the Croatian capital should be seen as a concerning and extremely weak reflection of innovation potential, economic strength and the overall entrepreneurial environment. None of that will come as a shock to anyone remotely familiar with doing business in this country.

“The results are significant because entrepreneurs are reducing the volume of business in circumstances like pandemics,” they explained from Oberlo, a platform that allows entrepreneurs to find and sell their products online.The Croatian capital is sadly among the worst in terms of the number of days required start a business (19.5), the record holder is Auckland with a mere half a day. It is best rated in the tax sphere (although the score doesn’t include consumption taxes or VAT).

The list of advantages and obstacles for entrepreneurship reflects known agonies for many, but it can also be a ”check” list for the new government with Tomislav Tomasevic leading Zagreb in order to make it more attractive for entrepreneurs, attract innovation, new jobs and increase the Croatian capital’s revenue.

For more, follow our dedicated business section.


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