The investment climate in Croatia is improving, but other countries are growing faster than us, and they are becoming more desirable and more competitive for investors. Currently, the Croatian diaspora remittances are higher that foreign investments in Croatia, it was said at the panel “How to attract new investments” held in Zagreb, reports Poslovni.hr on February 24, 2019.
Jako Andabak, a member of the Executive Board of the Croatian Employers’ Association and chairman of the Sunce Group Supervisory Board, said that some problems are actually changing for the worse. But what is constant is the non-functional bureaucracy and unresolved land-legal issues.
Goran Pauk, president of the Croatian County Association, believes that the state is too centralised and that it should work toward decentralisation. But he also warned that there is a need for constant communication between the central government and local self-government units in order for the legislation to meet the needs of people.
“Building permits are issued quickly, within eight days, if all the documentation is in order. However, many of the Adriatic counties are burdened with unresolved property issues, legalisation and similar problems that make it difficult to enforce a quick administrative procedure,” said Pauk.
Mladen Fogec, the president of the Association of Foreign Investors in Croatia, warned that Croatia was reforming very slowly. “We have long ago transformed from socialism into a market economy, but socialism has not left our heads even after 30 years. The fact that the current focus of our economy and politics is the shipbuilding problem, and not what will happen in 5 or 10 years, is enough to tell us where we are. And with regards to the investment climate, it is enough to say that the remittances sent by Croatian diaspora are higher than foreign investments. The remittances reach the amount of two billion euro annually, while the investments do not exceed 1.7 billion,” said Fogec.
Christoph Schoefboeck, the CEO of Erste Bank, pointed out that Croatia has progressed and that they see it through cooperation with their clients, mostly small and medium businesses. “The problem is that Croatia is growing, but too slow. Other countries are growing better and faster. I am sure that Croatia could rise by 15 to 20 positions in the investment rankings in just a year or two,” said Schoefboeck. One of the measures proposed is that all investors in Croatia should be treated as strategic investors.
Translated from Poslovni.hr (reported by Darko Bičak).
More news about Croatian diaspora can be found in the dedicated section.