Archive for: November 2012

Severina Wins And Turns Heads At Serbia’s HELLO Awards

Croatia’s most famous pop singer Severina has been voted “Person of the Region” by Serbian magazine Hello.

The 40-year-old solo-mother, who recently split from her Serbian fiance Milan Popovic, turned heads at the awards ceremony held in Belgrade last night, when she turned up wearing a predominantly see-through dress, by Croatian costume designer Matija Vuica.

Severina attended the awards in the company of her manager Tomislav Petrovic and posed with the Serbian Royal family, the Karađorđević’s on the night (pic above).

Croatian Post To Enter Gold Pawn Market

One of the most profitable businesses in Croatia currently are gold pawn shops, and a new player is about to enter the market in an unlikely form. Croatian Post (HP) is set next week to present its plans to include the buying of gold with its ordinary mail services.

If there is enough interest, Poslovni dnevnik reports that the national mail service will offer the gold pawn service at over 200 post offices around Croatia. The first phase is expected to see 30 post offices around the country initially offer the service.

“The market for buying gold in Croatia, and the whole of Europe is experiencing rapid growth, and there is potential for more. Croatian Post are currently in the pilot phase, and depending on its success, it may spread to most post offices in the country. With the service Croatia Post wants to make profits, but above all it secures jobs for people,” said Croatian Post.

Croatian Island Products Given Stamp Of Quality

Forty-seven Croatian island manufacturers received the “Croatian Island Product” (Hrvatski Otocni Proizvod) quality label from the Ministry of Regional Development and EU Funds last night at a presentation held on the central Dalmatian island of Hvar.

Out of the 79 products from the 47 manufacturers to be endorsed and promoted by the government include 17 from the Split-Dalmatia County from the islands of Vis, Hvar, Brac and Solta, 10 from the Dubrovnik-Neretva County from Korcula, Lastovo and Peljesac, 3 from Sibenik-Knin County, 5 from Zadar County from Pag and Dugi Otok, and 12 from the islands of Rab, Krk and Cres in the northern Adriatic.

From 2007 when the government initiative kicked off, there have been 121 island manufacturers (334 products) from 19 islands given the Croatian Island Product quality label. Wine, rakija, olive oil, cheese, lavender products, fish, jams and honey, are just some of the island products to be given the endorsement.

Sly Stallone: I Would Love To Promote Polo In Croatia

Film hardman Sylvester Stallone, known for his combative roles as boxer Rocky Balboa and soldier John Rambo, has a passion that is far removed from his violent characters – the “Sport of Kings” – Polo, and he wants to promote it in Croatia.

The American born actor, who is the son of an Italian emigrant, spoke recently to daily newspaper Jutarnji list where he revealed his intentions.

“If I wasn’t an actor I would have been a professional polo player,” said the 66-year-old, adding that his good friend invited him to Brijuni in Croatia to play a promotional match of polo a few years back but due to obligations he could not make it.

“I would like to come another time, as far as I heard, the polo project on Brijuni has not succeeded. If someone wants, I would love to promote polo in Croatia,” said Stallone.

Big Drop In Number Of Croats Living In Serbia

Serbia has just released its 2011 census data and one glaring trend is the drop in the number of Croatians living in Serbia from 2002 to 2011. The number of Croats living in Serbia has dropped from 70,000 to 58,000, meaning Croats have dropped from 0.94% to 0.81% of the population in the country.

The largest number of Croats still reside on the Vojvodina area with 47,033, reports

Body Of Murdered Teen Found

Forensic experts have confirmed that the skeletal remains of a body found on Tuesday in Josipdol (Karlovac County) are those of murdered teenager Antonia Bilic who went missing in 2011.

Truck driver Dragan Paravinja was sentenced to 40 years jail for the murder of Bilic last month despite a body being found. Bilic went missing on 7 June 2011 after hitching in the town of Drnis in inland Dalmatia. After what was described as Croatia’s largest ever search and rescue operation, there was no sign of Bilic at all.

The discovery of Bilic, who was identified by DNA testing, finally closes the curtain on the case for the Bilic family who have had uncertainty since 2011.

House Prices Down In Zagreb, Up In Split

The average price per square metre for a house in the Croatian capital Zagreb has dropped by 82 euros, whilst in the Dalmatian city of Split it has jumped 656 euros in the last two years. In September this year the average sought after price per square metre in Zagreb was 1,482 euros, and in Split 2,344 euros.

House prices have dropped 5.2% since 2010 in Zagreb, whilst in Split they have increased by a huge 38.9 %, according to statistics from real estate portal

House prices were in general still cheaper than apartment prices, with a 6% difference on average in the capital and a massive 29 % in the eastern city of Osijek.

Split, Pula and Dubrovnik were all towns where house prices were higher than apartments. There was a 5.7% difference in Split, a 8.5% in Pula and an 11.7% difference between the two prices.

€307 Million Financial Injection For Atlantic Grupa

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and four commercial lenders have done a deal with Croatian food-producing company Atlantic Grupa for a financial package worth 307 million euros.

A large chunk of the money, around 270 million euros, will be used for balance sheet restructuring, whilst the rest of the money will be used for investment projects.

The news is important recognition for one of the regions largest food and supplement producers. The Zagreb based company, which also owns a pharmacy chain in Croatia, has products such as Cedevita, Pildenta toothpaste and Multipower in its stable.

Smoking On The Bench May Land Legendary Coach In Hot Water

Legendary Croatian trainer Miroslav “Ciro” Blazevic maybe in hot water after a photo of him smoking a cigarette on the bench during his side NK Zagreb’s 1:0 win over Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb on the weekend went around the world.

According to FIFA regulations, coaches are not permitted to light up on the bench during the match, but that did not stop the chain-smoking 77-year-old coach who famously took Croatia to 3rd place in the 1998 World Cup in France.

Blazevic was warned by the 3rd official during the match but ignored his orders, which also may result in the 3rd official being wrapped over the knuckles. Blazevic is confident he will escape punishment from the Croatian Football League Commissioner Josip Brezni.

“Brezni won’t punish me. He is my friend,” joked Blazevic.

Schools Close As Teachers Strike

Nearly all schools in Croatia were closed today as the nations teachers staged a warning strike in protest of the cancellation of the Basic Collective Agreement for public-sector services and against proposed new salary cuts for teachers.

Parents were warned not to send their children to school today as Croatia’s Minister of Education Zeljko Jovanovic condemed the strike. Jovanovic said that the strike was not necessary as negotiations were under-way on the basic collective agreement. Jovanovic said lists would be made of those teachers who participate in the strike and they will not be paid their salary for today.

Teachers were joined in the strike by the nurses’ trade union who are protesting against the ban on employment of new medical staff despite the fact that there is now a shortage of around 12,000 nurses, said their trade union leader Anica Prasnjak.