The Economist conference ‘The World in 2020’ was held for the first time in Croatia. The leading political and business figures gave their views of global trends in international relations and certain economic sectors in 2020 at the event which took place at the Croatian National Bank.
The Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, Andrej Plenković, officially opened the conference. In his speech, he underlined that Croatia, as the only successful EU accession project from the region, was ready for the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, which begins on 1st January. “We want a Europe that will tackle the problem of migration, terrorism, climate change and human rights, but also create global trends,“ said Prime Minister Plenković.
The event’s host and the Governor of the Croatian National Bank, Boris Vujčić further noted that the activities regarding Croatia joining the ERM II exchange rate mechanism would be another important step to mark 2020. „This is certainly a turning point in Croatia’s path towards the introduction of the euro. Croatia hopes to join ERM II in the second half of 2020,“ Governor Vujčić said at the ‘The World in 2020’ conference.
Just a few days before the snap parliamentary election in the United Kingdom were due to take place, the conference welcomed a special guest, Joseph Johnson, the former minister in the last three British governments who resigned from his government post in November due to disagreeing with his brother Boris Johnson over Brexit. He said that Brexit caused the deepest political crisis on the island in the last 300 years. „Since the UK should leave the EU during the Croatian Presidency, I can hardly imagine a better place to part with the EU than Zagreb. You even have the Museum of Broken Relationships,“ joked Joseph Johnson.
President of Color Press Group and Director of Color Media Communications, the company that holds The Economist’s license for the region, Robert Čoban talked about what awaited us in 2020, which is also covered in the magazine ‘The World in 2020’ which will be available on Croatian newsstands from mid-December. Mr Čoban said that the global geopolitical and economic topics that the world population would have to face in 2020 include the possible slowdown of the global economy, climate change and China’s global influence.
Ambassadors of the USA, Israel, Spain and Sweden spoke in the first panel, as did Gordan Markotić from the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, which is in charge of Croatia’s six-month EU presidency starting on 01.01.2020. The second panel featured business leaders from Croatia and the region, including the top executives from Fortenova Group, INA, Uber, HUT and Janaf.
In addition to the conference, ‘The World in 2020’ magazine will have its worldwide launch in late December, and for the first time, some of the magazine’s content this year will be published in the Croatian language. Color Media Communications was the conference organizer and the holder of The Economist’s license for the region, while the Livit Company was the project’s partner in Croatia.