President Grabar-Kitarović toured the company ahead of her official visit to Sweden.
President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović visited on Tuesday the facilities of Ericsson Nikola Tesla in Zagreb and pointed out that it is a company which has successfully adapted to market conditions both in Croatia and on the global stage. She added that she would visit Sweden in late March where she will discuss economic cooperation, investments, innovations and new technology, reports tportal.hr on March 7, 2017.
“For me, this really was a look into the future and into, hopefully, the future of Croatian economy. This is a company which has truly adapted to market conditions”, said the President to reporters. She added that she was impressed not only by the amount of money which the company has invested in the development of innovation and research, but also by the way it operates, promoting STEM and other sciences among young people and opening its doors to students and pupils.
“STEM is the future and the foundation of the development of any modern society”, said the President. She added that she was delighted with the fact that in the last two years Ericsson Nikola Tesla has employed 748 new workers, professionals from Croatia. She also expressed her hope that the company would continue to employ young professionals.
Grabar-Kitarović said she was proud of the fact that Ericsson Nikola Tesla is the largest research and development centre in Croatia and one of the biggest in Europe and that experts from other parts of the Ericsson group often seek help from their Croatian colleagues. “We have seen several implemented projects. I believe that there will be more of them and that Ericsson Nikola Tesla will achieve even better position globally”, said the President.
However, she noted that Croatia’s system of public procurement was still such that it did not take into account true quality, so public tenders are often being cancelled due to technical factors which have nothing to do with bidders. “I hope that the government will continue to work on reforms to the public procurement system”, she said.
President’s visit to the company was part of preparatory activities for her trip to Sweden from 21 to 24 March.
CEO of Ericsson Nikola Tesla Gordana Kovačević said that they introduced the President to the way the operate, their projects, markets, employees and innovations. Ericsson Nikola Tesla is the largest ICT company in Croatia. It has a total of about 3,000 employees, and the research and development centre employs more than 1,200 experts, she said.
“Last year, we hired 318 new professionals, and 430 the year before, mainly in development and research, which is extremely important for Croatia. More attention should be paid to the STEM area and businesses which are building the culture of innovation”, said Kovačević. In her words, the company will not accept compromises when it comes to quality and realistic deadlines for implementation of projects.