darko horvat.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Daniel KASAP / dk

The incumbent Croatian government is firmly committed to the implementation of reforms and to the improvement of business climate so as to attract potential investors, the Croatian Minister for SMEs, Darko Horvat, said on Wednesday while attending the Sarajevo Business Forum in the Bosnian capital.

Addressing the event that brought together several hundred business people and officials from 16 countries in the region as well as from Arab countries and China, Horvat said that being a European Union member, Croatia strongly advocated the enhancement of economic cooperation in its neighbourhood.

In the same vein, he said that government policies must be conducive to a stable business environment and favourable investment framework and tax system.

The minister recalled that the cabinet led by Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic intended to amend 238 laws so as to create more favourable conditions for doing business in Croatia and for new investments.

Concerning large-scale projects, Minister Horvat said that Zagreb was open to talks with Bosnia and Herzegovina about investments in the hydro power plant "Dubrovnik II" and on the continuation of the construction of the Croatian and Bosnian sections of the pan-European Vc transport corridor.

He reiterated Croatia's full support to Bosnia and Herzegovina's European Union membership bid so as to remove administrative borders and help set up a single economic zone in the region, according to Horvat's explanation.

The first edition of Sarajevo Business Forum was held in 2010. Bosna Bank International (BBI), in cooperation with its shareholders (Islamic Development Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank) and other international partners, organises this annual investment conference.

Islamic Development Bank President Ahmed Mohamed Al-Madani said today that the organisation of such events in Sarajevo helped Bosnia and Herzegovina to become a hub for connections of potential investors,

Bosnia and Herzegovina's Presidency chairman Bakir Izetbegovic said that this forum was attracting a rising number of participants and building bridges of cooperation between Europe and Asia.

Izetbegovic welcomed the attendance of the Chinese delegation at this year's forum. The delegation included China Gezhouba Group Corporation that is set to invest EUR 722 million euros in a new block within the thermal power plant in Tuzla, northeastern Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Chinese EXIM bank is willing to offer a favourable 15-year-long loan for that purpose. This project  is now described as the biggest investment in energy facilities in the country since the end of the war.

Latest news

Germany's record surplus sets off debate about using extra cash

Germany's budget surplus continued to grow last year, reaching its highest level since the reunification of East and West Germany in 1990 and setting off a debate about what to do with the extra cash.

Croatian PM says gov't has no influence on appointment of Podravka managers

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Thursday the appointment of new management board members in the Podravka food company was in the remit of the supervisory board and that neither he nor the ministers had any influence on talks at the supervisory board.

Australian archbishops call abuse probe a 'catastrophic failure'

The Australian Catholic Church's handling of a child sex abuse scandal has been a "catastrophic failure" and amounted to "criminal negligence," blasted the country's archbishops Thursday.

WHO: More than 300 million suffer from depression as world ages

The global number of people with depression has risen by 18 per cent to 322 million in the past decade, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Thursday, demanding greater attention for high-risk groups.

Ukrainian lawmaker, vocal critic of Russian government, abducted

Ukrainian lawmaker Oleksiy Honcharenko, an adamant critic of the Russian government, has been abducted by a "group of unknown people," state media reported Thursday, quoting the Odessa regional prosecutors office.

Australian ex-PM slams Netanyahu for 'torpedoing' peace process

Former Australian premier Kevin Rudd has accused Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu of "torpedoing" peace negotiations in the Middle East.

Weekly "Novosti" dismisses NGO's accusations

The newspaper today also dismissed all accusations the NGO presented at a recent news conference, and retorted that the NGO's criticism were ill-intended and untrue accusations.

Sixteen killed in fighting between army and rebels in Congo

Sixteen fighters from the reactivated Congolese rebel movement M23 have been killed during two days of fighting with the army in the east of the country, a military spokesman said Thursday.

Maltese FM on behalf of EU calls for preservation of stability in BiH

Maltese Foreign Minister George Vella said in Sarajevo on Thursday that his country, as the current chair of the European Union, closely followed the developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and other parts of the Western Balkans.

Croatia-Hungary committee on minorities meets after four-year hiatus

The Croatia-Hungary Intergovernmental Committee for the implementation of the agreement on the protection of the rights of the respective ethnic minorities met in Zagreb on Thursday after a four-year hiatus.

Syrian rebels claim full control of al-Bab, defeating IS

Syrian rebels backed by Turkey said Thursday they are fully in control of al-Bab, wresting it from Islamic State after a military campaign that began in November and cost hundreds of lives.

HURS says Croatia fails to create conditions for long-term growth

The Croatian Association of Workers' Trade Unions (HURS) warned on Thursday that a report which the European Commission released on Wednesday showed that Croatia had failed to create conditions for a long-term economic growth, adding that the situation in the Podravka food company suggested the continuation of the trend of shutting down jobs in the production sector.