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Croatia Country Report - June, 2015

  • July 2015
  • -
  • Emerging Markets Direct Media Holdings
  • -
  • 22 pages

This report reviews key macroeconomic data and microeconomic developments for Croatia published between June 8 and July 5, 2015.

The World Bank said in June it expects Croatia's economy to expand by 0.5% this year and thus record its first growth after six straight years of decline. The growth should strengthen in the next two years, by 1.2% in 2016 and 1.5% in 2017.

The IMF warned that fiscal vulnerabilities, incomplete corporate balance sheet repair, and structural weaknesses pose risks to Croatia's economic recovery, while Moody's Investors noted in a report that Croatia-based issuers are the most vulnerable to the euro depreciation against other currencies.

The report provides details on the latest developments regarding the Ionian-Adriatic Gas Pipeline (IAP) and contains information about the planned initial public offering (IPO) of Croatia's HAC ONC, the maintenance and tolling unit of motorway operator Hrvatske Autoceste.

It also shows which EU member states decided to maintain labour market restrictions for Croatian citizens.





Key Points:



o Croatia's consumer prices stayed flat on the year in May following a 0.1% annual decline in the previous month. The working-day adjusted industrial output rose 4.4%, accelerating from 1.2% in April. The annual growth of the first five months of the year reached 1.3% y/y.

o First quarter current account deficit widened to EUR1.28bn from a deficit of EUR625.8mn in Q4 2014.

o The unemployment rate fell to 17.1% in May from 18.4% in April. This was the third consecutive month of decrease. The average net monthly wage rose 3.4% in April, slowing from a 3.9% hike in March.

o January-April trade gap narrowed 4.1% y/y as exports rose at a faster pace than imports.

Table Of Contents

Croatia Country Report - June, 2015
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY4

MACROECONOMIC OVERVIEW5

Fiscal vulnerabilities pose risks to Croatia's recovery, IMF says5

World Bank keeps Croatia's growth outlook at 0.5% in 20155

Moody's sees Croatia as most vulnerable to euro depreciation6

REAL SECTOR6

1. GDP, Inflation6

Consumer price levels in Croatia at 67% of EU average in 20146

Croatia's consumer prices flatten in May7

Decline in Croatian producer prices eases in May7

2. Industry and Trade8

Growth in Croatia's industrial output accelerates in May8

Growth in Croatia's industrial sales slows in April9

Croatia's retail sales growth accelerates in May9

3. Labour Market10

Croatia's unemployment rate falls to 18.1% in Q1 - labour force survey10

Croatia's average net monthly salary rises by real 3.4% y/y in April10

Croatia's unemployment rate drops to 17.1% in May - flash estimate10

Labour costs in Croatia up 2.3% y/y in first quarter11

4. Tourism11

Croatia sees tourism revenues hitting record EUR7.5bn this year11

Croatian travel agencies, tour operators post EUR12mn loss in 201411

FISCAL SECTOR, MONETARY POLICY12

Croatia's current account deficit doubles q/q to EUR1.28bn in Q112

Croatian c-bank foreign reserves up 8.8% y/y to EUR14.2bn at end-May13

Croatia's M4 money supply up 3.2% y/y to EUR35.7bn at end-May13

Croatia sells EUR42.5mn worth of kuna T-bills, misses target13

FINANCIAL INTERMEDIATION14

EBRD mulls EUR40mn loan to Croatia's Raiffeisen Factoring14

Zagreb bourse's turnover rises 5.6% m/m to EUR26.9mn in June14

Croatia negotiating with 20 investors for HPB capital hike, privatisation official claims14

Croatian insurers' premium income rises 4.3% y/y in January-May15

EBRD sells stake in Croatia's Privredna Banka Zagreb15

Net assets of Croatian open-end investment rise 8.2% m/m in May16

Croatian mandatory pension funds' assets up 19.4% y/y in May16

EXTERNAL SECTOR17

Croatia's trade gap narrows 4.1% y/y in January-April17

Croatia's gross foreign debt rises 2.5% m/m in March17

Croatia's trade gap widens 0.3% y/y in January-March18

STRUCTURAL REFORMS18

Croatia's HEP, Germany's RWE set up new joint venture18

Five EU countries extend labour market restrictions for Croats19

IPO of Croatia's HAC ONC could be completed by year-end, transport minister claims19

Croatia plans EUR60.1mn upgrade at Split airport20

Foreign ministers of Montenegro, Croatia, Bosnia, Albania sign joint statement to support TAP-linked gas pipeline20

Hungary's MET, Croatia's PPD reportedly set to buy stake in Petrokemija21

POLITICS22

Croatia's opposition HDZ Party keeps leading position with 27.5% backing - poll22

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