Production of parts for road vehicles accounts for more than three quarters of the value added in the automotive industry. Companies in Croatia produce parts that are installed in the vehicles of renowned international car manufacturers. The automotive industry in Croatia is based on a long tradition in related industries, such as plastics, metal production, welding and engineering.
Also, Croatia can commend itself with the production of innovative electric vehicles, which are with the build quality and innovation among the small group of the world’s manufacturers who are creating the future of the automotive industry.
More than 120 manufacturers of car parts employs almost 15.000 people and exports about 90% of its products.
Advantages of the automotive industry in Croatia include highly educated work force, excellent infrastructure, multiplier effects on other sectors as well as proximity of market and facilities for the production of vehicles of West and Central Europe.
As for the Croatian industry of rail vehicles, significant production potential exists in several firmly established companies which, together, employ approximately 1100 employees. These companies are involved in the development, production, modernization and maintenance of various rail vehicles, various activities supporting equipment and components for electric and other vehicles.
Update on the Public Consultation for the Manufacturing of Road and Rail Vehicles, Parts and Systems
On 1 February 2017, 47 representatives of the private sector along with public and research institutions participated in the launch of a project that aims to increase the competitiveness of the Automotive and Rail industries in Croatia. This project is a participatory, firm-driven and firm-focused project aimed at helping companies in sectors covered by the S3 to adapt to changing industry trends by defining a sector strategy and drawing up concrete action and investment plans.
The Ministry of Economy – the sponsor of this Competitiveness Reinforcement Initiative – opened the meeting by explaining how this project fits into the implementation framework of the Smart Specialization Strategy (S3). The initiative follows an analytical methodology that has been successfully applied to the upgrading of over 40 different sectors in 70 different regions around the world, primarily in the European Union. Presentations on the project specified three key phases of activities, including specified phases for:
1) Identification of industry challenges and launch of activities (completed);
2) Developing a sector strategy (February to April 2017); and
3) Launching of the actions needed to implement the strategy (April to July 2017).
The 1 February meeting – representing the culmination of Phase 1 – provided a forum for participants to participate in the identification of challenges and opportunities in the sector. Topics raised in the discussion included a need for continuous R&D and creating innovative products at a moderate price in order to be globally competitive, increasing pressure from buyers, and a need to educate a higher number of engineers. A second meeting will be held by April to share the findings of the analysis being conducted in the second phase, and to determine a series of actions that can be taken in pursuit of specific commercial opportunities.