Saturday, 25 September 2021

“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty,” Winston Churchill. There can be no doubts that this country’s transition has been a painful and at times seriously frustrating process. Monumental mistakes have been made. Senseless decisions have been brought. Logic was too often thrown out of the window. And personal gains have all too often been hiding behind a smokescreen of public good.

Many people watching from the side-lines become increasing annoyed at the lack of positive change. I am constantly being contacted by Croatian diaspora seeking answers to questions I have no answers for. I am in a privileged position, and somewhat unique position, that I have pretty much been here since the very beginning of this transition. This gives me the long-term view, the historical, however short, perspective.

And I can honestly say that the transition I have seen over the past two decades has been at a severely rapid speed. The same types of changes I have witnessed here would happen over two centuries in the UK.

Many observers don’t have a starting point for Croatia, they simply don’t know what the exact situation was like twenty years ago, and so they use experience from other countries as a starting point. That is a common mistake. For all this positivity there is however a rather worrying trend. The younger generations, on which we depend on for so much, are becoming discouraged.




Croatia is facing a demographic crisis. It is a situation could have been predicted. Easy to predict but difficult to solve. And the younger generations are running out of patience. I was chatting a few weeks ago to two young ladies who are both studying. One is studying to be a doctor. “I’m not saying that I wouldn’t like to work in Croatia after I finish my studies but I just need more hope that I will have a brighter future,” I could see the dilemma written across her face. And what was more fascinating was that throughout our lengthy conversation she didn’t mention financial security once, she did however mention hope on more than one occasion. And quite frankly it is more concerning that she used hope rather than money.

“It is a big world, but it has become increasingly smaller,” she added. Without doubt when she is a fully trained young doctor who is fluent in a handful of languages finishes her studies she will be in high demand from hospitals and institutions all over the world. The world will be her oyster, as the English say. On the flip side she, and her peers, are exactly the future that Croatia needs, no, desperately needs. If we take away the light at the end of the tunnel, then the tunnel gets awfully dark, and awfully long very quickly.

As I mentioned the demographic crisis is a tough problem to solve, naïve onlookers will just shout “pay higher salaries” or “decrease your bureaucracy.” These are by-products of a failure of the system. And the only way to improve the system is with the bright young generations. Which leaves us in somewhat of a catch 22 situation. The problems can’t be solved by any outside forces; change has to come from within. But without the real and correct means of change, i:e the youth of today, then change will come either badly or never at all.

Croatia isn’t the only country facing these problems, far from it. But when you start your transition from a negative position then it just takes much longer to catch up with every else. And time, or rather the lack of time, isn’t our friend. How much longer will young, highly trained and skilled professionals have the patience to wait, or more importantly the wiliness to fight for a future filled with hope. Time is not on our side. We need future generations to remember us more with gratitude and not with sorrow, once said Lyndon B. Johnson. 

Just how well do you know Croatia? Here are 13 different destinations from all over the country, how many do you know?

From the dramatic Adriatic coastline, to the wide open plains of Slavonia and the rolling hills of Istria. Croatia is a country of diversity.



You reserve the venue for your international event, spend time, money and effort on advertising it and print up all the posters. But mistakes will always happen.

Clearly the organisers of this international congress in Dubrovnik needed to turn on their spellchecker as they managed to print signs with the name of the city their conference was being held incorrectly.

Instead of Dubrovnik they renamed the pearl of the Adriatic as “Dubronik.” Whoops!


The Central Bureau of Statistics released an estimate report about the population of Croatia in 2018, which shows that in the middle of last year Croatia had a population of 4,087,843, which is 0.9 percent less than in the previous year – reports.

A 0.9 percent drop in population means that Croatia has 36,688 people less, and almost all counties have experienced a fall, except for the City of Zagreb, which has a growth of 0.22 percent, and the County of Istria, which has 0.26 percent more inhabitants.

The largest drop in population was recorded in Vukovar-Srijem County with 3.04 percent fewer inhabitants.

Of the total population, 1,975,052 are men (48.3 percent) and 2,112,791 are women (51.7 percent). The lowest number of women is recorded in the County of Lika-Senj (50.1 percent), and the highest is in the City of Zagreb (53.1 percent).

According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, in 2018 aging of the population continues. The average age of the total population of Croatia is 43.4 years (men 41.5, women 45 years), which makes it one of the oldest nations in Europe – they explain.

The share of young people (0-19 years), which is 19.6 percent of the total population, contributes most to the aging of the population. The lowest number of young people is in the County of Primorje-Gorski kotar (16.6 percent) and the highest in Medimurje County (22 percent).

The share of the fertile contingent in women is also continuously declining, reaching 41.5 percent in 2018.

The highest share of population aged 65 and over in the total population was in the County of Sibenik-Knin (25.3 percent) and in the County of Lika-Senj (24.9 percent) and the lowest was in Medimurje County (18.2 percent).

Most people lived in Zagreb (804,507 or 19.7 percent) and Split-Dalmatia County (448,071 or 11 percent), and the least in Pozega-Slavonia (67,862 or 1.7 percent) and Lika-Senj County (45,184 or 1. 1 percent).

Paola Antonini, Brazilian fitness model that is a huge inspiration to everyone, but especially to people with disabilities, is having a wonderful time in Dubrovnik.

Paola, who has lost her leg in a car accident, looks splendid posing with leg prosthesis on the Dubrovnik beaches, sharing her experience with over two million fans who are following her journey at her official Instagram profile

In the caption of one of the photos that collected over 60 thousand likes in one day, Paola shares that she is ''so in love with Dubrovnik''.

According to the website Greatest Physiques, Paolalost her leg in a car accident, after a drunk driver hit her while she loaded her luggage in the car. The injuries were so severe that doctors had to amputate Paola’s leg and replace it with a prosthesis.

-However, despite the tragedy, Paola never let it stop her from pursuing her passions in life. She’s continued to live every day to its fullest, inspiring people from all over the world with her positive spirit and attitude – Greatest Physiques writes.

Dubrovnik Mayor Mato Frankovic met with Russian Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev, who is in Dubrovnik for a meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission for Economic and Scientific and Technical Cooperation with the Russian Federation.

Minister Patrushev co-chairs this Intergovernmental Commission, where he met with Economy, Entrepreneurship and Crafts Minister Darko Horvat, co-chairman on the Croatian side, in Dubrovnik. In addition to the associates of both ministers, the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Croatia Anvar Azimov also attends the meeting.

The main topic of the meeting is the activities planned by the Protocol of the 8th session of the Commission, which took place at the end of November 2018.


A total of 6.3 million passengers travelled through Croatian airports in the first seven months of this year, an impressive 8.8 percent increase over the same period from last year. According to the latest statistics from the Central Bureau of Statistics 73.4 aircraft operations were record from the beginning of the year until the end of July.

Among the nine Croatian airports, the largest number of passengers this year, 719.8 thousand, passed through Split Airport, which is an increase of four percent compared to the same month last year.

Split is followed by Dubrovnik Airport, which grew by 8.6 percent with 510.9 thousand passengers, while Zagreb Airport “Franjo Tudjman” finished third with 363.9 thousand passengers, or 3.8 percent less than in July last year.

The largest increase in the number of passengers, of 28.4 percent, was in July at Zadar airport, through which 142.7 thousand passengers passed.

The majority of foreign passengers came from Germany, followed by the UK and France.


Mayor of Dubrovnik Mato Frankovic held a working meeting yesterday in Hamburg with leaders of the world's cruise lines sailing to the Port of Dubrovnik, members of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).

Various topics were discussed in the meeting including the management of the destination and the successes and challenges facing the City of Dubrovnik in implementing the Respect the City project, primarily in the form of reducing the number of passengers on cruise ships. Regarding the further development of sustainable tourism, the rules for the 2020 season have also been harmonized, which will cover further improvements in the number of guests who visit the City at the same time.

The introduction of a cruise tax was also announced, beginning in 2021, in accordance with the applicable Law on Tourist Fees of the Republic of Croatia. The funds that the City of Dubrovnik will derive from the residence tax for cruise ship guests will be earmarked for the improvement of the city's communal infrastructure.


After Dubrovnik, one more Croatian city decided to start the fight against ATMs in the historical core. Banks and owners of private homes that don’t have a permit, will have the remove the ATMs – Glas Istre reports. 

-Since we are legalists and we are following the legal procedure, we made a list of all ATMs last month and found that there are fifty ATMs in the Old City, in Carera Street and side streets, 90 percent of which were set up is without the necessary documentation. To make some order in the city center, we have made a list of those who can or cannot stay – said Rovinj Mayor Marko Paliaga, according toGlas Istre.

ATM owners are obliged to act on the decision of the City and the conservators by the October 1st.

The Zadar Cruise Port, located at Zadar's Port of Gazenica, was declared the Port of the Year at the 2019 Seatrade Cruise Awards ceremony held within the CLIA Germany Gala Dinner, during Seatrade Europe, in Hamburg on Wednesday.

Gazenica was the winner in the "Port of the Year" category, in which the other two finalists were the Port of OldenLoen, Norway, and the Port of Yokohama, Japan.

The Seatrade Cruise Awards were introduced some 0 years ago. Award categories include Destination of the year, Port of the year and Marine Interior Designer of the year – a brand new category for 2019 – and the Personality awards are made up of Seatrade Cruise Personality of the Year and the Seatrade Outstanding Achievement Award 2019.

Ports proposed for awards are judged by cruise industry leaders "with a wealth of experience and knowledge". "The Seatrade Cruise Awards offer recognition in industry categories as well as giving community and personality awards," according to the information on the Seatrade Cruise Awards.

Zadar Cruise Port is a part of the Global Ports Holding (GPH), an international port operator with a diversified portfolio of cruise and commercial ports.

GPH management chair Emre Sayin, as well as local authorities in Zadar expressed satisfaction with the award, adding that this will also serve as encouragement to further improve the port facilities.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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