Zagreb, June 5, – Foreign Investors Council and Deloitte organised under the high patronage of Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović the International Conference on foreign Direct Investments “The Best Practices in Attracting Foreign Investments in Central and South Eastern Europe”. The partners of the conference were AD Plastik, Dogus Holding, Hrvatska elektroprivreda, INA-industrija nafte, Philip Morris Zagreb and Pliva Hrvatska.
The opening session was attended by many guests, most notably public officials and heads of Croatian national institutions, such as Martina Dalić, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Crafts, Tomislav Pokaz, Adviser to Prime Minister, Marko Jurčić, Economic Advisor to the President, Tomislav Boban, State Secretary with the Ministry of State Property, Spomenka Đurić, State Secretary with the Ministry of Regional Development and Funds, Katica Prpić, State Secretary with the Ministry of Construction and Physical Planning, Joseph Gene Petrić, Assistant to the Foreign Minister, Želimir Kramarić, Vice President of the Croatian Chamber of Economy and Zdenko Lucić, Director of the Investment and Competitiveness Agency.
After the introductory speeches by the organisers, the attendants were addressed by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister Martina Dalić and Envoy of the Croatian President and Advisor Marko Jurčić, who both endorsed the activities of the Foreign Investors Council and emphasised the importance of foreign direct investments for further Croatian economic growth.
Following the addresses, Deloitte’s international experts presented best practices in attracting foreign direct investments in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. With their presentations, they contributed information on selected experiences gained by these countries in attracting foreign investment, privatisation, tax policy, legal security and incentives for investors in certain sectors that have been gathered over the last twenty-five years’ period.
The conference continued in a form of panel discussion with participation of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister Martina Dalić and a number of representatives coming from some of the leading foreign investors in Croatia and in other regions, such as Burak Baykan, Regional Director of Dogus Holding, Zoltán Áldott, President of the Management Board of INA, Mladen Fogec, President of the Management Board of Siemens Croatia, Mihael Furjan, President of the Management Board of Pliva Hrvatska, Marinko Došen, President of the Management Board of AD Plastik, Anita Letica, General Manager of Philip Morris Zagreb and Dražen Nimčević, Partner in Deloitte Croatia. The panelists have looked back on their respective companies’ experience in investing in Croatia and gave their view on the necessary improvements that Croatia must achieve in order to join the most successful countries.
The conference was concluded with a comparative analysis of Croatia and the countries of Central and Southeastern Europe. In conclusion, the steps beneficial for improvement of the national investment climate were identified and they include reducing withholding tax and income tax, tax breaks for investments made in R&D, IT and other sectors of a importance for national strategy, a proactive national policy in attracting foreign investment and a general business-political stability.
In addition to the representatives of the Croatian Government and government institutions and leading investors, the conference attracted a number of representatives of the diplomatic corps, media and business community from Croatia and abroad.