There is no overall legal framework to specifically promote and develop the cultural / creative industries. The legal provisions that affect cultural industries refer to specific cultural sectors (book production, music, audio-visual products, etc.) and to economic sectors, e.g., small entrepreneurship, activities of transnational media corporations in Croatia, etc.
The cultural industries in Croatia have not been recognised as a specialised field of cultural development. They are identified within the established cultural creativity areas like music, film, audiovisual, etc. and supported through regular subsidies of the Ministry of Culture and local communities. In October 2008 the first attempt to support cultural industries as a specialised field of cultural production was launched by the Ministry of Culture, in cooperation with the former Ministry of Economy, Labour and Entrepreneurship. The competition for funds to cover the costs of technological equipment, administrative and office expenses etc. was opened and over 450 cultural entrepreneurs applied to the call. In 2013 this model was partially changed and the Ministry of Culture was responsible for part of the project, while the Ministry of Entrepreneurship developed a special line devoted to SMEs in creative industries as a part of the new call “Entrepreneurship Impulse” that distributed 3 million HRK (approx.400 000 EUR). In 2014 the Ministry of Culture distributed 1 526 900 HRK (approx. 200 000 EUR), while the Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Crafts has not announced the new calls for creative industries projects, but has opened a Pilot Project for contemporary design and artistic and traditional projects in the amount of 500 000 HRK (approx.67 000 EUR). In 2015 and 2016, the Ministry of Culture continued its Programme with slightly increased funds.
Table 1 – Number of projects and amount of funding (2008-2016) ‘Entrepreneurship in Culture’ programme
|Year||Number of supported programees||Amount of funding HRK/EUR|
|2008||70||2 000 000 HRK (approx. 280 000 EUR)|
|2009||108||4 000 000 HRK (approx. 560 000 EUR)|
|2010||136||4 000 000 HRK (approx. 560 000 EUR)|
|2011||128||4 000 000 HRK (approx. 560 000 EUR)|
|2012||90||4 000 000 HRK (approx. 560 000 EUR)|
|2013||39||1 649 880 HRK (approx. 219 984 EUR)|
|2014||44||1 526 900 HRK (approx. 203 586 EUR)|
|2015||60||1 854 096 HRK (approx. 247 212 EUR)|
|2016||60||1 817 577 HRK (approx. 242 343 EUR)|
The government, and in some cases local and regional authorities, are subsidising book production, music production and the recording and film industries (see chapter 4.2.6). Several innovations have been introduced since, such as bursaries for writers and translators and fixed book price regulations in the form of an Agreement between publishers and relevant ministries. New legislation regarding audiovisual activities was put into force in 2007 and 2011, which established the Croatian Audiovisual Centre as an independent body, and which has created a cash rebate system for filming in Croatia (see chapter 4.2.6).
The cultural industries are statistically not transparent enough nor are they perceived, by the public, as a profit-driven sector. However, some sectors such as publishing or film and music distribution and production are almost entirely privatised and generate funds from a variety of sources including public funding, sponsorship but also direct investment and their own income. The products of domestic cultural industries are mostly distributed and consumed in the domestic market with the exception of pop-music and soap-operas, which are successfully exported throughout the region of South East Europe. Films also find their way to international audiences (mainly through festivals) and there are a few writers whose works are translated and distributed internationally. Liberalisation of the audio-visual market and the presence of private broadcasters on the Croatian market, have boosted the domestic audio-visual production which includes also independent productions (mostly entertainment programmes). However, the recession showed the extent of the high reliance of cultural and creative industries on public funds and the need for a more sustainable approach to financing.