Croatia offers significant investment attractions, particularly because of its high potential tourism and other sectors and because of the government’s incentives to attract investors. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Ivan Suker says, “Many sectors offer excellent investment opportunities. We anticipate great interest in our tourism, agriculture and energy sectors in particular following Croatia’s entry into the EU.”
Long tradition of private enterprise
One attraction Croatia offers which sets it apart from many of its neighbours is its long history of a vibrant private sector. Ivan Suker explains, “Croatia has always been known for private entrepreneurship and has a longstanding crafts tradition; many of these crafts operations became new companies in the 1990s. Unlike in other post socialist economies, Croatia already enjoys a high level of development in some sectors.”
Croatia’s ongoing privatisation effort is also creating new investment opportunities. The Deputy Prime Minister points out that several tourism firms are currently being privatised, along with campgrounds and other tourism related services. He adds that once global markets show recovery from the economic crisis, more Croatian companies may launch IPOs.
The government is committed to ensuring a level playing field for foreign investors in Croatia and to maintaining transparency, a strong regulatory framework, and a sound financial system overseen by HANFA (the Croatian Financial Regulatory Agency). Ivan Suker points out that while some companies may feel they can operate in Croatia without controls, this is definitely not the case. Croatia aims to meet EU standards in all its activities.
Croatia’s financial sector fundamentals are sound and this helped the country in combating the recent global financial crisis. Croatia’s ratio of public debt to GDP remains much lower than in many other European countries. Croatia’s financial services sector has already attracted significant foreign investment, and the government welcomes new entries to the country’s high potential economy.