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Old Posted Sep 9, 2009, 8:31 PM
gradonačelnik's Avatar
gradonačelnik gradonačelnik is offline
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Croatia (in and about)

Hello!!!

I'm new on this forum. So let me introduce me and my country.

Croatia is a mediterranian- middle european country settled in Central and Southeast Europe, at the crossroads of the Pannonian Plain, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean Sea. Its capital (and largest city) is Zagreb. Croatia borders Slovenia and Hungary to the north, Serbia to the northeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, and it has a sea border with Italy to the west.

The Croats arrived in the early seventh century in what is Croatia today. They organized the state into two dukedoms. The first king, Tomislav Trpimirović I was crowned in AD 925 and Croatia was elevated into a kingdom. The Kingdom of Croatia retained its sovereignty for almost two centuries, reaching its peak during the rule of Kings Petar Krešimir IV and Zvonimir. Via "Pacta conventa", Croatia entered a personal union with Hungary in 1102. In 1526, the Croatian Parliament elected Ferdinand from the House of Habsburg to the Croatian throne. In 1918, Croatia declared independence from Austria–Hungary and co-founded the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenians. With that act croatia first time in history lose indenpendence. During World War II, Nazis invaded Yugoslavia and with the aid of the Ustaše, created the Independent State of Croatia. Only 10% of croatian people took a part of Nazi's, other 90% took a part to Partizans. First spontanious meeting of people who decided to battle against germans and italian occupators was held June 25th 1941. in wood next to Sisak. Croatian antifasistics not bottle only against Hitlers and Musollinis marionettes, but to Croatian freedom and independence as well. After the war, Croatia became a founding member of Socialistic Yugoslavia. On 25 June 1991, Croatia declared independence and became a sovereign state.

Croatia is a high-income country as well as member of the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, NATO, the World Trade Organization, CEFTA, and is an elected member of the UN Security Council for the 2008–09 term. The country is also a candidate for membership of the European Union, and a founding member of the Union for the Mediterranean upon its establishment in 2008.

World Heritage Sites

* Historical Complex of Split with the Palace of Diocletian (1979)
* Old City of Dubrovnik (1979)
* Plitvice Lakes National Park (1979)
* Episcopal Complex of the Euphrasian Basilica in the Historic Centre of Poreč (1997)
* Historic City of Trogir (1997)
* The Cathedral of St. James in Šibenik (2000)
* The Stari Grad Plain - island of Hvar (2008)

Croatian national parks:
- Mljet
- Krka
- Kornati
- Paklenica
- Sjeverni Velebit
- Risnjak
- Plitvice
- Brijuni

Croatia is inhabited mostly by Croats (89.6%), while minority groups include Serbs (4.5%), Bosniaks, Hungarians, Italians, Slovenes, Germans, Czechs, Romani people and others (5.9%). For the most of the 20th century the population of Croatia has been rising from 3,430,270 in 1931 to 4,784,265 in 1991. According to last census Croatia had something more then 4.4 million inhabitants. The natural growth rate of the population is currently negative with the demographic transition completed in the 1970s. Average life expectancy is 75.1 years, and the literacy rate is 98.1 percent. During recent years Croatian government is pressured each year to add 40% to work permit quotas for foreign workers and in accordance with its immigration policy it is trying to entice emigrants to return. The main religions of Croatia are Roman Catholic 88%, Orthodox 4.4%, other Christian 0.4%, Muslim 1.3%, other and unspecified 0.9%, none 5.2%.

During the last decade of the 20th century the population of Croatia has been stagnating because of Croatian War of Independence. During the war, large sections of the population were displaced and emigration increased. In 1991, in predominantly-Serb areas, more than 800,000 Croats were either removed out of their homes by the Croatian Serb forces or fled the violence. During the final days of the war in 1995, more than 120,000 Serbs, and perhaps as many as 200,000 fled or were gone following their illegal paramilitary govermant. Only a small fraction of Serbs have returned to their homes since 1995, according to the Human Rights Watch.Other Serbs said they don't want to come back. Croatia's remaining Serbs do not live in the Serbian Krajina (illegal paramilitary country) but in the Croatian heartland and major cities. Serbian Karajina has since been re-settled by Croats in 1997 monitored by UNHCR.

Privatization and the drive toward a market economy had barely begun under the new Croatian Government when war broke out in 1991. As a result of the war, the economic infrastructure sustained massive damage, particularly the revenue-rich tourism industry. From 1989 to 1993, GDP fell 40.5%. With the end of the war in 1995, tourism and Croatia's economy recovered moderately. However, corruption, cronyism, and a general lack of transparency stymied meaningful economic reform, as well as much-needed foreign investment.

Croatia's economy turned the corner in 2000 as tourism rebounded. The economy expanded in 2002, stimulated by a credit boom led by newly privatized and foreign-capitalized banks, some capital investment, most importantly road construction, further growth in tourism, and gains by small and medium-sized private enterprises.

Croatia has a high-income market economy. International Monetary Fund data shows that Croatian nominal GDP stood at $58.558 billion, or $13,199 per capita, in 2007. The IMF forecast for 2008 is $69.332 billion, or $15,628 per capita. In purchasing power parity terms, total GDP was $78.665 billion in 2007, equivalent to $17,732 per capita. For 2008, it is forecast to be $82.272 billion, or $18,545 per capita.

According to Eurostat data, Croatian PPS GDP per capita stood at 63 per cent of the EU average in 2008. Real GDP growth in 2007 was 6.0 per cent. The average gross salary of a Croat during the first nine months of 2008 was 7,161 kuna (US$ 1,530) per month. In 2007, the International Labour Organization-defined unemployment rate stood at 9.1 per cent, after falling steadily from 14.7 percent in 2002. The registered unemployment rate is higher, though, standing at 13.7 percent in December 2008.

In 2007, 7.2 percent of economic output was accounted for by agriculture, 32.8 percent by industry and 60.7 percent by the service sector. According to 2004 data, 2.7 percent of the workforce were employed in agriculture, 32.8 percent by industry and 64.5 in services.

The industrial sector is dominated by shipbuilding, food processing and the chemical industry. Tourism is a notable source of income during the summer, with over 14 million foreign tourists in 2008 generating a revenue of €8 billion. Croatia is ranked as the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world. In 2006 Croatia exported goods to the value of $10.4 billion (FOB) ($19.7 billion including service exports).

The Croatian state still controls a significant part of the economy, with government spending accounting for as much as 40% of GDP. Some large, state-owned industries, such as the country's shipyards, continue to rely on government subsidies, crowding out investment in education and technology needed to ensure the economy's long-term competitiveness.

Of particular concern is the backlogged judiciary system, combined with inefficient public administration, especially issues of land ownership and corruption. Another main problem includes the large and growing national debt which has reached over 34 billion euro or 89.1 per cent of the nations gross domestic product. Because of these problems, studies show that the population of Croatia generally has negative expectations of the country's economic future.

Croatia has so far weathered the global financial crisis reasonably well, but faces significant challenges in 2009 largely due to an expected downturn in Croatia's top export commodity, tourism. Croatia's external imbalances and high foreign debt present risks as well, as continued access to foreign credit in 2009 may be severely limited.

The country has been preparing for membership in the European Union, its most important trading partner. In February 2005, the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU officially came into force.

Croatia has a reputation of producing gifted athletes in a diverse range of sports. The most popular sports in Croatia are football, handball, basketball, water polo, tennis, and skiing.

The Croatian national football team won a bronze medal in the 1998 FIFA World Cup and Davor Šuker won the Golden Boot as the top goal scorer. The national football team has also played in the quarter-finals of the 1996 European Championships and the 2008 European Championships. The team is currently ranked 9th in the FIFA World Rankings (as of September 2009). The most popular football players are Luka Modrić, Darijo Srna, Ivica Olić and Eduardo.

The Croatia national handball team is a two-time Olympic Champion (1996 and 2004). The team also won a gold medal at the 2003 World Men's Handball Championship, and silver medals in the 1995, 2003 and 2009 World Championships. Croatia won bronze medal in 1994 European Championships and silver in 2008. RK Zagreb was a 1992 and 1993 European champion and 4 times a runner-up (1995, 1997, 1998 and 1999). Croatian players Ivano Balić, Igor Vori and Domagoj Duvnjak are currently among the best handball players in the world.

The Croatian national basketball team won a silver medal at the 1992 Olympic basketball tournament, bronze medal at the 1994 FIBA World Championship and bronze medals at EuroBasket 1993 and EuroBasket 1995. Croatian basketball clubs were Euroleague champions 5 times: KK Split three times (in 1989, 1990 and 1991) and KK Cibona in 1985 and 1986. Croatian basketball players such as Dražen Petrović, Krešimir Ćosić and Toni Kukoč were amongst the first foreign players to succeed in the NBA in the United States.

The Croatia national water polo team won a gold medal at the 2007 FINA World Championships and bronze medal in 2009. The team also won a silver medal at the 1996 Olympic water polo tournament and silver medals in the 1999 and 2003 European Championships. Croatian water polo clubs were 13 times LEN Euroleague champions. HAVK Mladost from Zagreb was a seven time European Champion (in 1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1990, 1991 and 1996) and was awarded the title Best Club of the 20th Century by the LEN. VK Jug from Dubrovnik and VK Jadran from Split were both three time European champions.

The Croatian Davis Cup team (Ivan Ljubičić, Mario Ančić and Ivo Karlović with coach Nikola Pilić) won the 2005 Davis Cup tournament. The tennis player Goran Ivanišević is one of the country's most popular sportsmen. Ivanišević won the 2001 Wimbledon Men's singles title and reached number 2 spot in ATP Rankings in July 1994. Ivan Ljubičić reached number 3 spot in ATP Rankings in May 2006. Iva Majoli won the 1997 Roland Garros Women's Singles title. Currently the best Croatian tennis player is Marin Čilić ranked 13th in May 2009.

Janica Kostelić is the most successful female alpine ski racer in the history of the Winter Olympic Games. She is the only woman to win four gold medals in alpine skiing at the Winter Olympics Alpine skiing events (in 2002 and 2006), and the only woman to win three alpine skiing gold medals in one Olympics (2002). She also won two slilver medals in 2006. Janica was the World Cup overall champion in 2001, 2003, and 2006. On February 5, 2006 Janica became the second female skier to win all five disciplines in one season. She also holds the record for the highest number of points in one World Cup season. In 2006 she won Laureus World Sports Award for Sportswoman of the Year. Her elder brother Ivica Kostelić is 2003 slalom World Champion and 2006 Olympic silver medalist in combined.

Blanka Vlašić is the best-known Croatian track and field athlete who specialises in the high jump. She is 2007 and 2009 World Champion. Blanka is also 2008 World Indoor Champion and 2008 Olympic silver medalist. Her personal best is 2.08 m (which is only 1 cm less than the world record) set in Zagreb at August 31 2009.

Croatia women's national volleyball team won silver medals three times at European Volleyball Championship in 1995, 1997 and 1999. Then Barbara Jelić was Croatia's best player. She won award for Best European Player in 2000.

Other Croatian well-known athletes are Duje Draganja, Gordan Kožulj, Sanja Jovanović and Đurđica Bjedov in swimming, Zoran Primorac, Dragutin Šurbek, Antun Stipančić and Tamara Boroš in table tennis, Filip Ude in gymnastics, Siniša and Nikša Skelin in rowing, Martina Zubčić and Sandra Šarić in taekwondo, Snježana Pejčić in shooting, Matija Ljubek in canoeing, Željko Mavrović and Mate Parlov in boxing, Branko Cikatić and Mirko Filipović "Cro Cop" in kickboxing and UFC fighter Goran Reljic.

Biggest Croatian towns are (2009. data):
Zagreb - (center) 704.775 - (town) 782.120 - (metro) 987.366
Split - Center 217.493 - town 224.017 - metro 428.818
RIjeka - 138.558
Osijek - center 85.817 - town 108.79 - metro 151.630
Zadar - center 72.991 - town 78.598
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Old Posted Sep 9, 2009, 11:00 PM
GaborFrankl GaborFrankl is offline
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Rijeka

Hi!

For Rijeka you gave a less than 138.000 pop number. But according to Wiki it was already 141.000 around 2001. (I found it an intriguing place to visit in Sept. 2007, even with the many so-called commie block 70s apartement towers perched on the hills facing the sea. I really loved the place.)

So isn't actually the noted 138K number a bit lover than the original. And you failed to give a data for the metro pop, though Rijeka (Fiume for us Hungarians, and the Italians!) is the 3rd biggest city of the country.
(One more thing: please forgive me for this, but in my opinion characterising Croatia as a "high-income" state GDP-wise or GDP PP is a bit of a stretch at best... It does not reflect reality imo.)
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Old Posted Sep 9, 2009, 11:03 PM
GaborFrankl GaborFrankl is offline
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Sorry, I wanted to write in my 1st letter at the 1st sentence: less than 140K.
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  #4  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2009, 4:46 AM
gradonačelnik's Avatar
gradonačelnik gradonačelnik is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaborFrankl View Post
Hi!

For Rijeka you gave a less than 138.000 pop number. But according to Wiki it was already 141.000 around 2001. (I found it an intriguing place to visit in Sept. 2007, even with the many so-called commie block 70s apartement towers perched on the hills facing the sea. I really loved the place.)

So isn't actually the noted 138K number a bit lover than the original. And you failed to give a data for the metro pop, though Rijeka (Fiume for us Hungarians, and the Italians!) is the 3rd biggest city of the country.
(One more thing: please forgive me for this, but in my opinion characterising Croatia as a "high-income" state GDP-wise or GDP PP is a bit of a stretch at best... It does not reflect reality imo.)
Good morning
All data about places, towns, muncipacilities, narrow agglomeration areas, and metropolitan areas in croatia you can find here : http://hr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gradovi_u_Hrvatskoj

The data of GDP and GDP PP I took from the CIAs web site. It does not reflect coz we have a big corruption, nepotism, and very strong organised criminal here.
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