Creative Industries Croatia
Global Development Croatia at Red Yellow Blue (RYB)
Building the creative city: Zagreb’s creative industries
The project aims to map the creative industries in Zagreb in order to have an evidence-based snapshot on how these industries contribute to social and economic development and increase the international visibility of the city. The outcomes of this mapping will be used as the basis for designing and implementing informed cultural policies that can promote local creative industries, increase their competitiveness and diversify the city’s economy.
The Institute for International Relations (IMO) was established in 1963 as a prominent research institute. Its fields of expertise and programmes include policy-oriented research and analysis in cultural cooperation, creative intercultural communication, as well as media and digital culture. The Institute also conducts major research projects aligned with the priorities set out by UNESCO and the Council of Europe in the fields of culture and communication.
Since joining the EU in 2013, Croatia, one of the wealthiest of the former Yugoslav republics, has committed to improving the business climate in an effort to stimulate growth from domestic consumption and foreign investment.
Though still one of the wealthiest of the former Yugoslav republics, Croatia’s economy suffered badly during the 1991-95 war. The country’s output during that time collapsed, and Croatia missed the early waves of investment in Central and Eastern Europe that followed the fall of the Berlin Wall. Between 2000 and 2007, however, Croatia’s economic fortunes began to improve with moderate but steady GDP growth between 4% and 6%, led by a rebound in tourism and credit-driven consumer spending. Inflation over the same period remained tame and the currency, the kuna, stable.
Croatia experienced an abrupt slowdown in the economy in 2008; economic growth was stagnant or negative in each year between 2009 and 2014, but has picked up since the third quarter of 2014, ending 2017 with an average of 2.8% growth. Challenges remain including uneven regional development, a difficult investment climate, an inefficient judiciary, and loss of educated young professionals seeking higher salaries elsewhere in the EU. In 2016, Croatia revised its tax code to stimulate growth from domestic consumption and foreign investment. Income tax reduction began in 2017, and in 2018 various business costs were removed from income tax calculations. At the start of 2018, the government announced its economic reform plan, slated for implementation in 2019.
Tourism is one of the main pillars of the Croatian economy, comprising 19.6% of Croatia’s GDP. Croatia is working to become a regional energy hub, and is undertaking plans to open a floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) regasification terminal by the end of 2019 or early in 2020 to import LNG for re-distribution in southeast Europe.
Croatia joined the EU on July 1, 2013, following a decade-long accession process. Croatia has developed a plan for Eurozone accession, and the government projects Croatia will adopt the Euro by 2024. In 2017, the Croatian government decreased public debt to 78% of GDP, from an all-time high of 84% in 2014, and realized a 0.8% budget surplus – the first surplus since independence in 1991. The government has also sought to accelerate privatization of non-strategic assets with mixed success. Croatia’s economic recovery is still somewhat fragile; Croatia’s largest private company narrowly avoided collapse in 2017, thanks to a capital infusion from an American investor. Restructuring is ongoing, and projected to finish by mid-July 2018.