Plenkovic: There’ll Be No Croatian Economic Downturn

Lauren Simmonds

croatian economic

October the 5th, 2023 – PM Andrej Plenkovic has not only stated that there will be no Croatian economic downturn to speak of, but that the country will actually surpass the revenues it earned back in the pre-pandemic, record year of 2019.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/VL/Ivica Beti writes, for the sixth year in a row now, Vecernji list organised a popular conference entitled: “The Croatia we Need/Hrvatsku kakvu trebamo”, which is dedicated to the effects of current economic, fiscal and monetary policy on overall economic flows.

This year the theme has been “Challenging times and female strength/Izazovna vremena i zenska snaga”. It has explored whether women in leadership positions can better respond to crisis and challenges, and whether they stand out in terms of their skills and style of managing complex business systems, among other things.

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic and several of his government ministers came to the conference, which was held in cooperation with the large domestic company Podravka.

Women in leading positions

“We envisioned this conference six years ago as a place of dialogue where people from the business world could come together and talk with representatives of the government and all others interested in Croatian economic development.

This year, and not by chance, we’ve been talking about female strength. Here in Croatia, we still have to work a lot on gender equality and on accepting that we’re all the same in the world we live in. At Vecernji list, we’re proud to have a very large number of women employed in leading positions. The task of us the media world is to open up topics and be a mirror of the society we live in,” said Vecernji list editor-in-chief Drazen Klaric.

The President of the Management Board of Podravka, Martina Dalic, thanked Vecernji list for many years of cooperation at the now traditional conference in Podravka. She also presented the company’s excellent results over the past year.

Podravka’s roaring successes

“Our strategy of developing and strengthening Podravka has really gained momentum over the past year or so. We’re currently at the peak of our investment cycle. In that year, it must be said that all of the projects we’re working on will give much more visible and stronger results due to two decisions having been made at the national level: Schengen and Eurozone accession. As the business year has progressed, the effects of both of these became more and more visible, and they’ll be even clearer in the future,” said Dalic.

After 80 million euros was invested in Podravka’s technological modernisation and business development, projects worth around 100 million euros are now underway. Another major investment is the construction of a logistics and distribution centre worth 48 million euros, which will be completed next year.

A new plant for the primary processing of tomatoes worth 13 million euros is currently also being built in Varazdin, and it will be completed by May 2024. Podravka also has production capacities in neighbouring Slovenia and in the Czech Republic. An investment worth five million euros was completed not so long ago in Ljubljana, and 11 million euros is being invested in tech in Maribor. This summer, the market capitalisation of Podravka exceeded an astounding one billion euros.

Plenkovic talks 2024 and 2025 – Will we see Croatian economic downturn?

As part of the conference, the deputy editor-in-chief of Vecernji list, Mislav Simatovic, had a “one on one” interview with Prime Minister Plenkovic, who pointed out that he doesn’t expect that a possible decline in exports and industrial production could in the future cause us to experience Croatian economic downturn.

“Croatian economic growth this year will be between 2.6 and 3 percent. Everyone is currently revising their growth estimates to the upside. Last autumn, the government estimated growth of 0.7%. We’ve already revised it twice ourselves and we intend to revise it again in a week or so, and I expect that there will be more or less a convergence of those estimates. The tourism data also shows us that we’re going to be better off than we were last year in terms of revenue. We’ll also see higher figures than those we earned back in 2019. Otherwise, domestic growth projections for 2024 and 2025 currently stand between 2.5 and 3 percent,” concluded the Prime Minister.


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