19:16 / 03.01.2022.

Author: Domagoj Ferenčić

Croatians spend a record 17.5 billion Kuna for Christmas

Shoppers in Zagreb

Shoppers in Zagreb

Foto: Željko Lukunić / PIXSELL

Much of the positive swing in economic data such as consumer spending this December, has been attributed to the fact that 2020 was such an abysmal year due to corona-crisis brought about by the harsh restrictive measures enforced by government.

According to the Tax Office, Croatians spent some 17.5 billion Kuna in December. This is up by ten percent from the previous record set in 2019. All this in spite of the coronavirus measures and growing inflation. Citizens however, say that while they have seen some wage growth over the past year, inflation has all but negated the positive swing.

For their part, most economic analysts expect growth in consumer spending to continue in 2022. The problem, they say, is what citizens are spending their money on. The director of the Croatian Employers' Association Damir Zorić: "For most people the Christmas holidays served as an outlet. So, you have to factor that together with the recovery, meaning that part of this can be put down to people wanting to return to some semblance of a normal social life. All expectations are that this year will be one of growth, but not as much as 2021, because we were recovering from an exceptionally bad 2020. But, there will be growth. There is more and more money circulating in Croatia. The problem is the structure of our economy and what we spend that money on."

Some are less optimistic, noting that the long-term effects of the coronavirus measures will not be easily circumvented, especially if government continues to insist on the restrictive epidemiological measures.

Source: HRT

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