Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic on Thursday assessed her official visit to Slovakia as very successful because she had talked with Slovakia's highest officials about bilateral cooperation in central Europe and economic issues.
She had an emotional encounter with the Croatian community in that country and was conferred with an honorary doctorate from Matej Bel University in Banska Bystrica.
In a closing statement to Croatian reporters covering her two-day official visit, the President underscored the importance of economic cooperation and expressed confidence that following yesterday's Slovak-Croatian economic forum, new opportunities for cooperation between the two economies would open up, particularly in regard to clusters where both countries have proven to be successful, for example a combination of the Slovak auto industry and Croatian companies manufacturing spare car parts.
"We can learn a lot from Slovakia when it comes to economic reforms because it is one of the countries that has the highest growth rate in the European Union, growth in employment and a good track record of absorbing (European) funds," she said.
She considered the awarding of an honorary doctorate as a great honour for herself personally and for her contribution to theory and practise in international relations but also for cooperation within the framework of Central Europe and in establishing the Baltic, Adriatic and Black Sea vertical.
"That is exceptionally important not just at the moment but for the future shaping of Croatia's foreign policy which has to focus not just on its neighbourhood in Southeast Europe but beyond - on Central Europe where we belong, on Europe as a whole and on the Euro-Atlantic sphere," President Grabar-Kitarovic said at the end of her visit to Slovakia.