Croatia's Accession to the EU – Economic Opportunities and Challenges

27  June 2013    10:00 am CEST


Bundeskanzleramt, Dachfoyer Entrance 1010, Minoritenplatz 1


Croatia will join the European Union on 1 July 2013. Unlike in the two recent accession waves when candidate countries gained substantial economic benefits already prior to their membership, this time both the EU and Croatia are struggling with the consequences of the economic crisis: shrinking or only modest GDP growth and high and persistent unemployment. Thus, positive economic effects from accession can be expected only in the medium- and long-term perspective. In the short run Croatia will mainly benefit from its eligibility to structural and cohesion funds provided a sufficient absorption capacity is available. Some losses in trade may occur due to leaving the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) upon accession. This workshop will discuss economic developments in Croatia in the wake of accession, the opportunities which will open up and also the challenges of joining in the midst of a major economic and financial crisis in the European Union.