Croatian Government: 94 Million Kuna for Island Development

Lauren Simmonds

A bit of good news for the islands and their inhabitants.

As Morski writes on the 3rd of August, 2018, the development of Croatia’s islands envisaged through the new Law on Islands has managed to find its place in the budget of the Ministry of Regional Development and European Union funds, with a welcome total of 94 million kuna allocated to its needs, while back in 2017 just 23.5 million kuna was provided.

This year, 30 million kuna was also allocated to the islands from the state budget, as was stated by Gabrijela Žalac and Nikola Mažar.

The key provisions of the Law on Islands are the new models of classification of the islands, new approaches to island development and the strategic planning of the further development of the islands, sustainable island development in the context of the concept of “smart islands”, the mechanism of island development cooperation, and the expansion of the function of special ID cards for island residents.

Among other things taking place at the level of numerous local self-government units, the new law has also introduced a new approach to the strategic planning of island development through the adoption of the National Island Development Plan, and the Annual Island Program at the national level.

In order to achieve equal living conditions for those living on the country’s islands, bringing them into line those living on the mainland, numerous measures have been suggested by the government, these include the subsidisation of public sea transport and public road transport, free bridge crossing, the equalisation of the price of drinking water on land with prices on the islands, and supporting island-based employers when it comes to the preservation of jobs.

Not really following or understanding how any of this is all that new? Don’t worry, you’re not alone and it seems not many are quite understanding it all, especially with the use of complicated terminology such as “New Approach to Strategic Development”, “New Island Classification Model”, “National Development Plan”, “Development Agreement”, “Development Agreement Mechanism” etc, and some other rather confusing and dare we say it, over the top administrative words written in the above text.

What does matter however, and what is of course hiding behind all of these needlessly long words and various new ”strategies”, is that the aim is to help islanders have a better quality of life, with the hope to equalise it with the same ease as those living on the country’s mainland.


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