Decision on Tender for Construction on Idyllic Istrian Bay Awaited

Lauren Simmonds

As Novac writes on the 31st of October, 2019, exactly two months have passed since the offers of interested investors arrived for the construction of a luxury camp in one of the most attractive parts of Barbariga, Istria. The 14.2 hectares of construction land in the immediate vicinity would have to see the creation of a three-star hotel with a total capacity of 1,400 beds, which, according to seasonal estimates, would not only boost Istrian tourism but also provide 130 jobs.

According to a report from the local portal Glas Istre, there are currently three offers in the game – from ENNA tourism (turizam) d.o.o., Punta Cissana d.o.o. from Vodnjan, and Renovo from Poreč.

Although offers from potential investors have been on the table for a long time and the tender has been announced within an express deadline, it is not yet known who will get the job even two whole months after the opening of the tender. The one who wins will be given the right to build for a period of 66 years on the land where a new Istrian complex should be built in three years.

Of the three interested investors, the highest annual construction fee of 1.6 million kuna was given by the company belonging to the well-known Croatian entrepreneur Pavao Vujnovac, ENNA Tourism, which is a component of the ENNA Group, whose core is the PPD group that deals with the import, sale, supply and distribution of gas. They are ready to invest about twenty million euros in building the new Istrian complex.

In addition to ENNA group, an offer was also submitted by the Vodnjan-based company belonging to Kristijan Davidović, Punta Cissana d.o.o., which offered an annual amount of 945,437 kuna for the right to build. The third interested investor, Renovo Poreč d.o.o., offered an annual compensation of 893,900 kuna. The company is owned by Zoran Brčić, who, since 2018, has been the owner of Mondo Carmarket with annual revenues of 20.4 million kuna.

Investors interested in contributing to Istrian tourism with this project had an unusually short time of just eight days, in which one day was written off due to a holiday, to produce and submit very extensive documentation. Within that deadline, they had to submit a power of attorney and prove that they had no debts to the City of Vodnjan, attach two debentures to 500 thousand kuna and pay at least 655 thousand kuna in total guarantees.

The Mayor of Vodnjan, Klaudio Vitasović, clarified that the decision will first be made by an expert commission that scores the bids received.

”The competent committee is still analysing what has been received, as it’s all very complex and demanding documentation. There are three valid offers that are quite extensive and time consuming. It isn’t a custom to provide information before the materials come to the Council. We need to wait a little while longer and we’ll announce it and everything will be clear at the next City Council meeting,” explained the mayor of Vodnjan.

He pointed out that the tender did not define a deadline for selecting investors, and the only condition is that a contract with the selected investor be concluded within fifteen days of being selected or confirmed by the City Council. He also said that the bid for the right to build was not crucial, because that was only one of the criteria involved.

Aside from the question of why the City didn’t call for tenders in the long run, thereby allowing for more competitive bidders and more diverse bids, the undefined condition of the quality of the business plan raises doubts that the City may already have an investor up its sleeve.

However, the mayor of Vodnjan, Klaudio Vitasović, said earlier that in this case “the price is not important, but the quality of construction and the way it functions is”.

The President of ENNA tourism, Zvonimir Tudorević, said that he and the company were looking forward to the decision of the City of Vodnjan. He also said that they had sent a request to the City themselves, since the tender had been so delayed.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for much more on investments in Croatian tourism, the Croatian economy, and Croatian entrpreneurs.


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