Croatia - Articles and news items
Issue 3 2016 / 25 May 2016 /
Croatia became an integral part of the European transport market when it joined the European Union on 1 July 2013, opening up both opportunities and challenges for its railway sector. Croatia initially focused on rebuilding roads but it has recently turned its attention to rail development – especially the modernisation of railway infrastructure. Renata Suša, President of the Management Board of HŽ Infrastruktura, explains more…
Issue 1 2014 / 12 February 2014 /
2013 was spent implementing the financial and organisational restructuring of Croatian Railways. The company was divided into three independent entities of which HŽ Cargo and HŽ Passenger Transportation are marketorientated transport operators whilst HŽ Infrastructure is the state-owned infrastructure manager. As a result, HŽ Infrastructure has seen major changes.
Issue 1 2011 / 15 February 2011 /
HŽ Putnički prijevoz d.o.o. is one of four associated companies in HŽ Holding and its main activity is passenger transport. The mission of HŽ Putnički prijevoz d.o.o. is providing high-quality, reliable, and economically and environmentally acceptable passenger transport services in urban-suburban, local-regional, international and domestic long-distance transport with modern rolling stock. Its vision is to become a major operator in Croatia focused on mass railway passenger transport according to market principles, while at the same time taking into account and protecting the owner’s interests to the satisfaction of transport users and employees.
Like in the case of all European railways recently, the global recession found its reflection in freight transport volumes, which in 2009 decreased by 24% in comparison with 2008. Passenger transport increased by 4%, but its increase is much smaller than those recorded in recent years, when passenger transport was up at the rates of 10 to 20%. There was a reduction in earmarked state budget funds and revenue from goods transport. Mid-February saw the top HŽ executive relieved of duty, therefore Mr. Zoran Popovac, M.Sc., took over the management of HŽ Holding from Mr. Davorin Kobak. Shortly after his arrival, saving measures and rationalisation of business operations were introduced, together with models aimed at improving liquidity within the HŽ system.
In 1992, the UIC initiated the ETCS project. An EU Transport Conference held in Essen in 1993 and a document published by the Danish transport EU commissioner, was the starting point for considerations on supporting corridors in Central Europe. Mr. Poul Frøsig, the ETCS Project Manager, identified in the Danish press information on an EU conference held in Essen and afterwards via the EU Essen conclusions with the possibility to obtain an EU financial support for early implementations of cross border projects.
Mijat Kurtušic discusses the events which have made a striking difference to the Croatian railway system over the last two years.
The year 2007 for Croatian Railways has been marked by intense action in two basic areas. In one of the areas, the aim was to carry out the restructuring process which entered its key phase during the year. Pursuant to the Railways Law and the Act on the Division of Croatian Railways, a holding company was created, comprising five companies: HZ Passenger Transport, HZ Cargo, HZ Train Traction, HZ Infrastructure and HZ Holding.
The history of Croatian Railways dates back to 1860 when the Kotoriba-Cvakovec-Pragersko line was built in the scope of the Budapest-Vienna line. Croatian Railways were established on 5 October 1991, upon the proclamation of the independence of the Republic of Croatia. The railways became a member of the UIC in 1992, joined CER in 2003 and are one of the youngest railways in Europe’s railway network. In parallel to Croatia’s negotiations to accede to the EU, Croatian Railways are enforcing their modernisation and restructuring plan so as to be ready for the moment when Croatia becomes a full member of the EU.
The restructuring and modernisation of Croatian Railways are a part of the comprehensive preparations for the accession of Croatia to the European Union. €1.9 billion will be invested in rolling stock and infrastructure from 2006 and 2010. The majority of that amount is to be invested in the modernisation of HZ lines that are Croatian sections of Pan-European Traffic Corridors, in the procurement of modern traction vehicles and rolling stock, and the automation and computerisation of business operations. Thus, Croatian Railways will be ready for the liberalisation of Croatian lines and their access to other railway carriers (operators) since they will be well prepared for the market competition on their own lines; they will also be ready to appear as an operator on the lines of neighbouring countries.