FOREIGNERS IN THEIR OWN COUNTRY
The recently published information that Slovenian citizens alone own 110 properties in the Republic of Croatia resounded like a bolt of lightning. She deafened us for a moment and then echoed softly for days. 000 properties on the Adriatic owned by Slovenian citizens alone. Where are the real estates of Italians, Austrians, Germans…
What is the final number of weekend facilities, "non-commercial tourist facilities" on the Adriatic if we continue to add cottages owned by Croatian citizens?
REGISTERED, CATEGORIZED, ANATHEMIZED
This figure of 110.000 properties owned by Slovenian citizens really needs to be repeated constantly. Not because of any bad opinion of our Slovenian neighbors and friends, but because of another figure. 100 households that provide registered and categorized accommodation services to tourists.
While due to the first figure (110.000 properties owned by Slovenian citizens), anti-epidemic measures are being relaxed and state borders are being opened, because of this second figure, tourism experts, advisors to the Ministry of Tourism, are "getting hair on their heads".
Despite the fact that this second figure represents 50% of legal, registered tourist turnover, hundreds of millions of paid income tax, paid tourist taxes, membership fees, VAT… because of this second figure is not in a hurry with measures to facilitate business and life in the "crown" era ”.
SO FAR ONLY REDUCED TOURIST TAX AND ONE TAX INSTALLMENT
So far, in the package of assistance to the tourism sector, the Ministry of Tourism has halved the tourist tax (in the first six months there is no tourist traffic), abolished the controversial tax on extra beds and postponed recategorization. The Ministry of Finance generously forgave the second installment of income tax and partially allowed the postponement of the first installment of income tax.
The first installment of income tax has not yet been forgiven, microloans for liquidity with HBOR have not yet been enabled, and a one-year moratorium on tourist loans and leases has not yet been negotiated.
HBOR CREDIT LINE FOR RENTERS
At the end of February 2019, the Ministry of Tourism pompously announced the operation of HBOR's long-established credit line for renters. “Excellent conditions for family and private tourism stakeholders. From 20.000 to 375.000 kuna with an interest rate of 2,70 percent for loans in kuna and 2 percent interest for loans in euros, with a repayment period of up to 10 years with a grace period of one year… The goal of this program is to harmonize the standards of accommodation facilities catering services in the household, raising the overall level of quality and additional offers of private accommodation, and ultimately improving capacity utilization and strengthening year-round tourism. "(Information from the site mint.hr).
This credit line is realized in cooperation with commercial banks and is strongly supported by the Ministry of Tourism, which subsidizes interest rates.
WHY NOT CHANGE THE PURPOSE OF HBOR LOANS?
A little over a year after the announcement of this significant news, a coronary virus pandemic occurred. The world has slowed down and tourism has completely stopped. Tens of thousands of micro-entrepreneurs in tourism have found themselves in a difficult situation. Without tourism income, which is often the only or necessary supplement to a family’s basic income, meeting the family’s basic expenses has become increasingly difficult. The situation is all the worse because this necessary supplement to the family income is realized in this part of the year, for several months, until the end of September. Every lost week, month in the period from spring to late summer can no longer be made up for next fall and winter.
That is why, at the very beginning of this great crisis, appeals were launched by the World Tourism Organization to the UN that micro and small entrepreneurs in tourism should be helped first. The whole sector depends on them and they depend on tourism and have no capital reserves or influence in financial institutions to be able to overcome the crisis on their own.
In Croatia, the opposite path was taken. First we set out to help the greatest. HBOR's interest-free liquidity loans are already operational for larger companies. Although the renters have "their" HBOR credit line, they still do not have an answer to the request to change their purpose in accordance with the situation in which the tourism found itself. It is requested to convert the same credit line with a reduction of the maximum loan amount from 50.000 to 15.000 euros. The purpose of the loan would be to preserve liquidity (read - survival until the 2021 season). However, the strong advisers are "raising their hair" from the number of 100 registered, categorized tourist facilities in the household, and at the same time they are trying to satisfy the other number of 000 facilities owned by Slovenian citizens.
Even now, the same rules no longer apply, according to which family micro-entrepreneurs in tourism, the hosts, received "their" HBOR credit line for "improving the quality of accommodation". Now they are no longer micro-entrepreneurs but ordinary individuals, just like the owners of those 110 buildings.
THE WOLF CHANGES HIS HAIR, BUT THE WONDER NEVER
Just when a person rejoices that difficult opportunities will bring out the best in people, that some positive patriotism occurs in those who are otherwise occupied with self-love, he must be disappointed again in the end.
This raises the question of who manages the Ministry of Tourism? Who rules Croatia? Are they related to the figure of 110.000 or those related to the figure of 100.000?
Author: Nedo Pinezić, www.nedopinezic.com / Photo: Pixabay.com