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Small yet significant improvements Sub-assembly jobs never generate profits in textile industry

Marinetek NCP Company renovating Monte Carlo marina Marinetek wins Monte Carlo contract over lower-cost competitors

Croatian-Afghan business forum CCE representative office to contract first business deal for road construction in the south

TEXTILE INDUSTRY

MARINA RECONSTRUCTION

OVERSEAS TRADE

PAGES 2 - 3

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PAGE 5 2010

Croatian Business & Finance Weekly Established in 1953 Monday / 25th October / 2010 Year III / No 0127 www.privredni.hr

S U P P O R T E D

B Y

T H E

pvinternational pv international C R O A T I A N

C H A M B E R

O F

E C O N O M Y

ŠTEFAN FÜLE, EUROPEAN COMMISSIONER FOR ENLARGEMENT

I HOPE CROATIA OPTS FOR THE EUROPEAN PATH

All EU countries would like to welcome Croatia as an EU member in the near future as it has already achieved much in its promotion among member states Lada Stipić – Niseteo

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n his interview with Privredni vjesnik, Štefan Füle, European Commissioner for Enlargement, was asked to comment on Croatia’s five years long negotiating period with the EU How do the previous and current enlargement circles differ? In order to ensure appropriate preparations for the EU accession procedure, it is beneficial to have more guidelines during the entire negotiation phase. These standards assist the country to focus on the most important ques-

Negotiations to be concluded after meeting all requirements tions. The application of individual standards will ensure better preparation for Croatian EU membership, and thus enhanced opportunities to avoid certain problems, which occurred in those countries from the last enlargement circle. The negotiation period depends on the progress achieved by the individual applicant. Enlargement policy and accession negotiations are based on the principle of individual

achievement. Negotiations will be concluded when Croatia has met all requirements. Enlargement is often described as the success of all EU members. The best way to promote enlargement is by making each new enlargement successful. This is a certain outcome if the country manages to achieve the correct balance between the preaccession technical preparations on one side, and political leadership on the other, that keeps both sides engaged by sharing the vision. This happens only in cases of quality procedures, as each accession makes the EU both bigger and stronger. All members would like Croatia become a part of the European Union in the near future. Member states have frequently emphasised their inclination towards Western Balkan countries gaining a European perspective. As for Croatia, it has already achieved much in the field of promotion itself among member states. How would you answer the question regarding the benefits of EU membership? What kind of benefits can Croatia expect when it joins the EU? In the case of Croatia, it will become an integral part of a huge

economic block, whilst at the same time its voice will be respected and taken into account in all contexts. This goes beyond any country’s individual ability to operate in international markets in both trade and politics. When Croatia joins the EU, it will actively participate in EU decisionmaking. Currently, all decisions made at the EU level also reflect on the Croatian situation. However, it does not have official authority regarding these decisions. EU accession process assumes certain reforms, which the country would not otherwise implement. For example, our preconditions for im-

proving the justice system will be of service to all Croatian citizens. Furthermore, our requirements for greater transparency and market competition will be cost-effective for public the administration, which includes the application of transparent procedures for public tenders. All this will help Croatian taxpayers save money, not to mention that they will be able to live, study or work anywhere within the EU. Of course, all these significant reforms will not show results immediately; differences will be felt gradually. I hope that Croatia will opt for the EU path.


2 VIEWPOINT

Privredni vjesnik Year III No 0127

DANIEL ŠIMIĆ, IBM CROATIA BUSINESS CONSULTING DIRECTOR

Croatia has a long way to go For the past five years, most major projects in public administration have been as a result of EU accession negotiations and reforms to meet EU standards urrently, public administration in general is being transformed more quickly than at any time in its history, with Croatia being no exception. Almost all aspects of public administration are either undergoing structural reform or are expected to do so in the near future. In this aspect, public administration does not differ from other economic sectors, which, influenced by globalisation, recession and competition, make huge investment in order to make their businesses ‘’smarter’’, thus ensuring survival or progress on an increasingly demanding market. The public sector’s motivation to operate more wisely is different. To date, each public administration strategy puts the focus on the individual. Such a strategy should be upgraded with those public services that any government provides for its people, including health care, social services, the tax system and education. All these are supposed to fulfil their tasks transparently for the benefit of the individual, and to be able to exchange data in order to prevent the individuals independent and lonely struggle with procedures, confirmations and evidence of dealing with institutions, which put him or her in the focus of their strategies. Regrettably, there is still a long way to go to achieve such an image. Information technology could significantly impact on this vision. Over the past several years, the Croatian public sector has evidenced many “e-trends” involv-

Privredni vjesnik Kačićeva 9 10000 Zagreb +385 1 5600020 uprava@privredni.hr www.privredni-vjesnik.hr/ subscription

SUB-ASSEMBL PROFITS Svetozar Sarkanjac

ore than 20 years ago, second to the domination of food manufacturing, the textile industry was the symbol of Osijek economic development together with welldeveloped chemical, wood and metalworking industries. Large manufacturing organisations such as IMK Slavonia, Svilane, Lanene industrije (LIO), Mare, Tekosa and a number of smaller factories in Osijek and the surrounding region together employed around 10,000 workers. However, the latest CCE data from the Osijek County Chamber show that the textile industry in the area employed a mere 1,790 workers in the first half of 2010. In many ways, the Croatian textile industry was the first to enter a crisis period some ten years ago.

M

C

IMPRESSUM:

Small yet significant improvements

ing public services and general information on public administration, available on-line. Whilst this is a step forward, in most cases it has been created only as an IT version of a written procedure within a specific public administrative body, and does not contribute to better public inter-service communication for the purpose of providing a complete and improved service to both individuals and business. In addition, the majority of public services are not compliant with national standards or a frame of interoperability, hence it will be difficult, or even impossible, to interconnect them in the future. Furthermore, over the past five years, all major projects in public administration have been as a result of EU accession negotiations and reform to meet EU standards. However, it is time to rethink strategy and independently prepare projects which will make the public administration ‘’smarter’’.

FOR PUBLISHER Nikola Baučić +385 1 4846661 uprava@privredni.hr

IMC MANAGER Dea Olup +385 1 5600028 olup@privredni.hr

EDITOR IN CHIEF Darko Buković +385 1 5600003 bukovic@privredni.hr

TRANSLATION Tr@duco traduco@zg.t-com.hr

EXECUTIVE EDITORS Andrea Marić maric@privredni.hr Vesna Antonić antonic@privredni.hr

COUNSELLOR, INTERNATIONAL OPERATIONS, LANGUAGE EDITOR Ray Fletcher fletcher@privredni.hr

The current economic crisis gave an additional shock to the business. However, a few small, mostly family-owned companies have managed to adjust to the volatile market. Although the current financial crisis changed business success criteria, modern Osijek companies like TekstilLIO and Davor pletenine, as well as Hemco from Đakovo and several others provide an example of successfully overcoming this dif-

The Slavonian textile Industry currently employs only 1,790 staff; 20 years ago it employed about 10,000 ficult economic situation, stated Boja Stanković, representative of the CCE County Chamber Osijek. She added that these are all hardworking companies, with a tendency to grow and employ people as they regularly meet their liabilities and are recognised by the market. Further-

The Slavonia Textile Industry ha have been reduced mainly to a family owned companies have m more, they have one additional common denominator – none of these companies are involved with so called lohn jobs. In fact, both Hemco and LIO develop their own brands with the aim of becoming a recognised force on the market. Hemco – experts for protective clothing The Hemco Company from Đakovo was founded in 1992 as a family enterprise. As with the majority of companies, Hemco started modestly with the manufacture of waistcoats. In its present format, it is a textile manufacturer renowned for its expertise, namely protective clothing and safety equipment manufacture. “From our beginning in 1992, we have continu-


3

LY JOBS NEVER GENERATE used for separating layers in road construction, railway construction, water management (embankment construction), as well as in basic building construction work.

as encountered a business slump which has led to restructuring. The former champions piece of real estate and thousands of dismissed workers. However, a few small, mostly managed to adjust and survive ally recorded growth. However, this year, due to the global financial crisis, we have experienced certain problems. Future growth is therefore expected to be much slower than in the past”, says Slobodan Mihalj, Hemco owner and general manager, who added that company annual turnover totals around €5.48 million. Currently Hemco employs around 120 workers, and co-operates with nearly 3,000 business partners across Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although the crisis has reduced orders in both local and neighbouring markets, Hemco management is not considering taking on sub-assembly jobs. “These have never generated profits as they provide only a short-term solution with bad long-term con-

sequences. In Croatia, they have caused irreparable damage’’, Mihalj points out. LIO – linen and geo-textiles The Osijek based company Tekstil-LIO management shares the same philosophy. Tekstil-LIO is the successor of a former textile giant founded in 1901. Due to local illegal business decisions in the post-war period (still pending the final word in law), the factory was restructured and Tekstil-LIO was founded. Its 40 employees put great effort into maintaining the tradition of linen and geotextile manufacturing, showing significant success through the current financial crisis. The fact that company workers were unable to go on a collective summer vacation due to increas-

ing demand for their products caught special media attention. Despite their results being below those planned, such news additionally strengthened employee optimism. Zlatko Kozina, General Manager, said that quality and delivery deadlines of ordered goods had never been in doubt. The only problem lies in payment security. “We intensified our pillows and linen deliveries to small family hotels on the Adriatic coast precisely for this reason, as they proved to be more reliable payers.’’, Kozina stressed. Together with the linen programme, a significant share also relates to geo-textiles. This is a non-woven textile, produced with the latest technology of needling cut polyester fibres. These materials are

Yearning for a stable market However, none of these results are spectacular enough to support the claim that ‘’they mark the beginning of a textile industry boom’’, especially if, in the words of Boja Stanković, considering the enormous speed at which the situation is changing. Only one or two large unpaid deliveries could crush the overall business of certain companies. A similar problem applies to materials supply. For example, if a supplier increases the price of his product by 20%, 30% or even 40%, it is hard to change the prearranged price of the final product. Therefore, the situation is very unpredictable and a stable and permanent market does not exist. Producers are constantly in suspense, from one delivery to the next Small manufacturers, performing lohn jobs in co-operation with recently established (rare) large companies, are in a particularly difficult position, in that they have adjusted their technology to meet client demands, thus investing in both the equipment and textile manufacturing staff. However, business orientation can change almost instantly if the client renounces the previous agreement in favour of knitwear, which requires both new machines and staff. The current situation can change rather quickly, leaving nothing but unpaid debts and debts incurred from investment in production which would meet client needs. The examples of Hemco and LIO show that persistence in product quality together with the use of the latest technology, rational business operations and good productivity are the only guarantee for business stability and for the survival of the textile industry.


4

(

Privredni vjesnik Year III No 0127

( 55

€ 1.3 million contract value

tonnes

the weight of each pontoon

Marinetek NCP Company (Šibenik) renovating Monte Carlo marina

Marinetek wins Monte Carlo contract over lower-cost competitors The Monte Carlo Port Authority agrees to the deal on the basis of a professional approach and superior technical solutions Jozo Vrdoljak arinetek NCP, or Marinetek Group, a Croatian-Finnish company with its head office in Šibenik, has been selected in the tender to undertake the firstphase renovation of Port Hercule in Monte Carlo, one of the most prestigious marinas in the world. The marina, which is the main yachting facility in Monaco, is world famous for its luxurious yachts and associated ‘jet-set’ lifestyle and is situated immediately in front of the Monaco Grand Prix race track, which classifies it among the most expensive destinations of its kind. Yachts with annual berths in this marina are chartered on a daily basis for extremely large sums.

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Professional approach “Marinetek group is proud to have been selected by Monte Carlo Port Authority to install exclusive Marinetek pontoons. From the outset, we have collaborated with our Finnish partners on preparing the offer for this important international tender. However, we decided not to disclose all the details until the final decision and signing of the contract. Despite many lower-cost competitors but due to our professional approach and superior technical solutions, the client decided that Port Hercule deserves only the best”, announced Boris Miškić, Marinetek NCP General Manager. Marinetek will replace three old fixed piers with its Concourse and Super Yacht floating concrete pontoons. The project is worth around €1.3 million. Concours pontoons are the biggest standardised elements in the Marinetek portfolio. To date,

similar pontoons have been installed only at Palm Jumeirah Marina in Dubai. The pontoons are 6 metres wide and weigh over 55 tonnes, and are to be constructed and placed in position by syncrolifts on the special platform at NCP Remount Shipyard in Šibenik. Innovation in the building process Production will start very soon, as the majority of preparations have already been made and materials obtained; in this way NCP expects to meet the short deadlines set by the client. “The client is very demanding. The innovation in the building process are huge service pipes which will replace the usual open

channels for installing electric energy ducts, water supply systems, and waste water management systems. For vessels over 30 metres in length, Marinetek

Port Hercule is the main luxury yachting facility will install special stainless steel bitts, designed exclusively for mega yachts. The shipment of the first pontoon elements is scheduled for November, in order to be installed over the winter, with the project to be completed in April, 2011, in time for the Formula 1 Race (Monaco Grand Prix). Marinetek’s

factory in Šibenik guarantees the highest quality of its products, as well as a professional approach to business, therefore the management is sure that the client will be more than satisfied with both the delivered products and our service’’, Miškić points out. In addition, it is interesting to mention that, for the purpose of complying with environmental standards and raising the quality of the project, piers made of pontoon elements will replace the existing fixed piers. Therefore, floats will not only be favoured over fixed elements for building new ports and marinas in the future, but the old piers will increasingly be replaced by completely new and ecologically acceptable technology.


www.privredni.hr Business & Finance Weekly

5

CROATIAN-AFGHAN BUSINESS FORUM ::: news Average net salary for August at €738.50 The average monthly net salary per employee for companies in Croatia stood at €738.50 in August, according to preliminary data from the Central Bureau of Statistics. On a monthly basis, the average net August level increased by 1.3% and year-onyear by 2.3%. Average gross monthly salary per employee in August stood at €1,055.

CCE representative office to contract first business deals

Birotehna, one of 11 Croatian companies to visit Kabul this July, has agreed a deal with the road construction industry valued at €3 million Igor Vukić

nto Lipovac, the owner of Birotehna from Slavonski Brod, decided to contact CCE representatives as soon as he was informed the Chamber was to open a representative office in Kabul. As a member of delegation, headed by CCE president Nadan Vidošević, Mr Lipovac visited Afghanistan in July to attend the opening of the new representative office. The first results have been impressive as Birotehna has been assigned for the construction of a 46 kilometres-long road section in south Afghanistan, worth €3 million. “Despite the challenges, this particular construction is rather profitable” said Lipovac at the Croatian-Afghan business forum, held in the Zagreb CCE office last week. Nadan Vidošević, CCE president, and Mohammad Qurban Haqj, managing director of the Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, used the occasion to sign a Memorandum of Co-operation which will facilitate the implementation of individual deals as well as provide opportunities for business meetings. Lipovac’s company deals with specific road-construction technology applying patented

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ecological composite materials, developed by PowerCem, Birotehna’s Dutch partner. Road construction is quicker, of finer quality and cheaper as its application reduces the quantity of tarmac used. The application of this new technology in Afghanistan is to be supervised by Birotehna managers who will be required to follow strict safety procedures, as suggested by Afghan hosts. Mass consumption products welcome This CCE business forum gathered around 20 representatives of various Croatian companies, such as Dalekovod, Ghetaldus, Podravka, Gefot, CMC ironworks form Sisak, Jedinstvo, Ventilator and many other. “Afghanistan provides a wide variety of opportunities in many sectors” pointed out Stanislav Dunatov, director of the CCE representative office in Kabul. The standard of living has significantly increased, which encourages the demand for various types of goods. Five large shopping malls have recently been opened in Kabul, with several others planned. Thus, this country with 26 million inhabitants welcomes not only road construction and the construction industry, but also those selling mass consumption

products. 35% of Afghan GDP comes from agriculture, as it produces corn, rice, barley, wheat, fruit as well as poppies (or opium to be more correct). Mohammad Daood, advisor to Afghan Chamber, says they require experts in logistics, packaging and food distribution. Promising business deals are to be expected in the mining and geological research sectors. Afghanistan mines 40 different types of marble and its iron ore has the highest percentage of iron anywhere in the world (62%). Patience and hard work required There are numerous business opportunities for Croatian companies in projects financed by NATO. Business risks have significantly decreased in the last two years and financing and payment have been strictly controlled. The government encourages private investors and is developing a market-based economy, hence maintaining their traditional role of a country where East meets West. “This market provides several opportunities for Croatian companies. With some patience, hard work and diplomatic support, we can provide a range of services”, concluded Stanislav Dunatov.

Registered unemployment rate at 16.9% The registered unemployment rate in Croatia was 16.9% in September, as reported by the Central Bureau of Statistics, an increase by 0.5% when compared with August. At the end of September, the Croatian Employment Service registered 289,503 unemployed persons, some 6,173 more than in August 2010, an increase of 2.2%. When compared with September 2009, this increase amounts 11.7%. Construction industry notes mild decrease in growth

The most recent data for August 2010, published by the Central Bureau of Statistics, show the volume of construction work decreased by 11.7% over the same period of the previous year, due to the large number of newly constructed properties and decreased demand. The volume of construction work has decreased by 17.2% in the first eight months of 2010. Some 800 construction permits were issued in August, a 5.3% decrease when compared with the same period of 2009.


6

Privredni vjesnik Year III No 0127

CROATIAN FOREIGN CURRENCY MARKET Currency

AUD CAD JPY CHF GBP USD EUR Source: HNB

EUR

Kuna exchange mid-rate

7.36

5,168231 5,129948 6,499872 5,41808 8,284568 5,275949 7,340956

Ruđer Bošković to implement two IPA projects worth € 1 million The Ruđer Bošković Institute (IRB) is to implement the first two projects, worth €1 million, as a part of the EU pre-accession IPA programme. IRB management announced the projects are to develop innovation system in IRB and the University of Rijeka as well as to establish research infrastructure in the fields of translation medicine and applied genomics. These two projects have been selected from among 19 different proposals by tender, held in September 2009. Tele 2 invested over €0.68 billion in Croatian telecommunication market Tele 2, the third largest mobile phone operator in Croatia, has to date invested more than €0.68 billion into the Croatian telecommunication market, according to Julian Ogrin, Chairman of Tele 2 Board of Directors. €0.41 billion of the total has been invested in network construction with €0.14 billion being spent on marketing and sales. The intention is to significantly increase the network infrastructure and provide a quicker network in 2011 aiming to reach a speed of 21 Mbps. Petrokemija buys commercial paper Zagreb Stock Exchange announced that Petrokemija, using its own funds, repurchased the 12th tranche of its commercial paper, totalling €875.000. This tranche was quoted on the Official Market of the Zagreb Stock Exchange and forms an integral part of the Programme of Issuing Commercial Paper from 2009, developed by Petrokemija in cooperation with Privredna Banka d.d. Zagreb as dealer and issuing agent.

5.30

CHF

5.50

7.35

5.28

5.48

7.34

5.26

5.46

7.33

5.24

5.44

7.32

5.22

5.42

7.31 18.10. 19.10. 20.10. 21.10. 22.10

WEEK OCTOBER 23, 2010

::: news

USD

5.20 18.10. 19.10. 20.10. 21.10. 22.10

5.40 18.10. 19.10. 20.10. 21.10. 22.10

Insolvency

Corporate debt totals €4.37 billion In August company indebtedness stood at €3.58 billion and private individual debt at €0.79 billion Vesna Antonić lliquidity still presents a huge problem to companies in Croatia, as seen by the increasing trend of insolvencies recorded in August. The number of insolvent companies and overall unsettled payment obligations has significantly increased in the past two years. In fact, according to the Financial Agency data, released in the latest issue of Gospodarska kretanja, a publication from the Croatian Chamber of Economy (CCE), the overall amount of identified and recorded unpaid debts totalled €3.58 billion at the end of August, an increase of €83.97 million when compared with the same period in 2009. This figure relates

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to a total of 70,617 companies employing 65,097 employees. More precisely, in August, a total of 30,764 insolvent companies with 39,808 employees had liabilities of €3.58 billion, an

Illiquidity still presents a huge problem to companies in Croatia increase of €77.4 million when compared with July. On a monthly basis, the number of insolvencies increased by 264 although the number of employees in these companies decreased by 3,101. However, on an annualised basis, the level of unpaid liabilities in-

creased by 40.1%, or €1.03 billion. The number of insolvent private individuals increased by 29.3%, with the number of employees increasing by 1.8%. Highest debt level in the trade sector In August 39,853 private individuals managing 25,289 employees,

had unpaid debts of €0.79 billion an increase of €6.58 million over July. On an annual basis, their unpaid liabilities increased by €0.16 billion, or 24.9%. On a monthly basis, a decrease in numbers employed fell by 2.2%, although year-on-year it was by 7.1%. More than 70% of overall unpaid liabilities relate to 3 sectors - trade 34.3%, the construction industry 18.9% and processing industry 17%.


www.privredni.hr Business & Finance Weekly

WE PRESENT 7

BELIMPEX, ZAGREB

GIFTS, KOPRIVNICA

Global availability Craftsmen, artists, designers and small entrepreneurs lacking their own website, can contact the web-shop and arrange product placement year ago, the entrepreneurial centre and incubator Koprivnički poduzetnik, supported by the City of Koprivnica, set up an online store www.gifts.hr with the aim of assisting the sales of quality products manufactured by traditional craftsmen, artists, designers and other small entrepreneurs. “Since our beginning, the number of entrepreneurs and craftsmen whose products are sold in the web-shop, has increased and can also be found on the international market. Our newest acquisition are suppliers from the island of Vis and the city of Makarska, although we include manufacturers from many other Croatian towns and cities’’, said Maja Balaško, the Centre Project Manager. All have the opportunity to present their products on-line, which is especially important for small manufacturers, as many of them lack their own website or range overview on existing websites, adds Balaško. In this way, due to the possibility of filtration by individual producers, they are available globally 24/7.

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FAIRS: ALL IN ONE PLACE Visitors to Munich and Klagenfurt Trade Fairs may buy discount tickets via Belimpex mongst its business activities, Belimpex, the Munich and Klagenfurt Trade Fairs general agent for Croatia, organises business trips as well as designs and constructs fair stands for both local and foreign fair events. Trip organisation includes reservation of appropriate accommodation, transport, and, among other, city sightseeing. Thus, the company, currently with two employees, does not offer classic tour packages, but rather individualised ones, according to arrangements with the client. Via Belimpex, founded in 1995, one can buy discount fair tickets on-line for non-exhibitors intending to visit one of the fairs, thereby saving time and money. Tonči Belan, Belimpex Senior Manager, says their clients are companies in all sectors exhibiting at the Munich Trade Fair, including sport, construction, trade, ecology and waste water management, electronics, op-

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tics, transport and logistics. ‘’With the Munich Fair being among the biggest in the world, the fair calendar is truly impressive and Croatian exhibitors willingly participate in such events. During the current financial crisis, Croatian exhibitors have recognised that placing products on new markets ensures survival, but also business expansion. However, fairs have shown a slight decrease in the number of visitors, as clients cut costs ‘’, he points out. Sponge or Atomic Matter? He adds that successful company appearance is occasionally accompanied by various interesting stories and anecdotes. Thus, once, one of their exhibitors set off for the Munich Trade Fair. His display included sponges and a sanitary product line named ‘Atomic’. ‘’His display was being transported together with many other products together with the stand. When the customs officers stopped the vehicle, they saw the name ‘Atomic’, which they found suspicious, as they thought it concerned atomic matter. Therefore, the exhibitor was not allowed to cross the border. As trucks usually travel by night, we received a phone call at 2 a.m., and had to explain to the officer that the “dubious” cargo involved only sponges and sanitary ware. In the end everything went well, they were permitted to cross the border and the company’s appearance at the fair was successful’’, recalls Belan. (B.O.)

Credit Card Payment Option Natural cosmetics, fashion accessories, gift coupons, drinks and confectionery, children’s toys, artwork, souvenirs and antique books can be purchased on-line, as well as many other products.

At the beginning there were only 11 manufacturers, whilst today the n u m b e r has increased to 24. ‘’Considering these products are mainly presented as gifts, yet are rarely purchased during a crisis, we are sure that economic recovery will positively affect the number of producers who contact us, as well as our overall sales’’, pointed out Maja Balaško. Payment by credit card has recently been added as an option. All potential clients interested in sales of this type should contact Koprivnički poduzetnik Centre via telephone or e-mail, available on the shop web page. In fact, the shop has already received orders from the USA and Poland, which implies that, although international deliveries are considered as quite expensive by Croatian standards, foreigners are very much interested in this type of selling. Products can be purchased by anyone who has internet access and a credit card. The ordering procedure is very simple; the specific product should be selected as well as how it will be delivered and paid for by credit card. Within a few days the product will be delivered to the buyer’s home address.


8

Privredni vjesnik Year II No 0127

TOPUSKO

Would you care for Sofia’s kiss?

Top Terme provides health and recretional programmes as well as speciality cuisine in quiet, green surroundings

Sanja Plješa opusko is one of those rare Croatian continental destinations, providing both thermal spa and health resort services, which have become a recognisable brand. Due to their very specific health and recreational as well as gastronomy programmes, Top Terme and Topusko Health Resort increasingly attract tourists providing them with both vacation and rehabilitation opportunities. Located on the slopes of Petrova and Zrinska gora, it is surrounded by forests, parks and greenery.

T

Therapeutic Water Topusko is primarily known for its therapeutic thermal waters with a temperature of 68o to 72oC, which needs to be cooled

as well as with pool and fitness facilities at their disposal. Terme frequently welcomes athletes preparing for sports events as well as students on excursions”, points out Đurđa Kovačević, manager of Top Terme.

before the pools are filled. It is suitable for the treatment of inflammatory diseases of the motor system in remission, extra-joint and metabolic rheumatism, the rehabilitation of neurological patients, sport injuries and related health problems. As opposed to the spa, Topusko Health Resort is a medical facility having a contract with the Croatian Institute for Health Insurance regulating the provision of medical treatment and other services including physical therapy and rehabilitation. Special programmes for group tours, senior citizens as well as individual guests are also included in the Top Terme range of programmes. ‘’In 8 to 10 days customers are medically examined and receive different therapies with underwater massage, pool and gym exercise

19th century gastronomy In order to provide guests with the finest services, the health resort chefs have put their efforts into creating a cuisine based on local meals, yet adjusted to modern tourists. The 19th century menu is dedicated to the memory of Topusko’s loyal guest, baroness Sofija, wife of Ban Josip Jelačić. Thus they have created specialties like Ban cheese spread, “Sofia’s kisses” (Sofijini poljupci), “new court soup” (novodvorska juha), beefsteak a la Sofia and Countess Anka’s pie.

special acknowledgments, eight gold and four silver medals. The equipment for dual detection, developed by Vilko Žiljak, Klaudio Pap, Ivana StanimirovićŽiljak and Jana Žiljak-Vujić, was considered to be the most successful Croatian exhibit as was awarded a diamond award as well as a gold medal. In addition, the Croatian delegation received the “Ambassador Award” for their committed attendance at the fair.

DM profit up to €13 million DM (Drogerie Markt)has increased its turnover by 2.11% during the financial year 2009/2010, which ended in September. According to Mirko Mrakužić, Chairman of DM Board of Directors, turnover rose to €0.19 billion with nett profit at €13 million. The DM share of the Croatian market increased by 3.4% to 24.9%, making it the largest market share within the ten countries in which DM conducts its business activities.

::: news Guardian places Croatia as the fourth most attractive European destination “The Guardian” newspaper has published its annual awards in the category “Travel Awards 2010”, placing Croatia as the fourth most attractive European destination. “Best European Country” was awarded to Austria, followed by Switzerland and Sweden. In addition, British travel agents recommend Croatia for shorter journeys within the Euro-

pean continent. “Travel Awards” is the only award presented by British professionals in the tourism sector. Croatian innovators triumph in London Croatian exhibitors have presented 12 innovations and new products at the 10th British Fair of Invention, Innovation and Technology, which have achieved outstanding success. They gained 17 medals, five


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