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1 <p align="center"><b>Prime Minister Ivica Racan - guest of the first PLIVA Forum</b></p>
2 <p>Zagreb, June 20 - The guest of seventy of PLIVA's managers at the first PLIVA
3 Forum held on June 19 was Prime Minister of Croatia Ivica Racan. In his introductory
4 speech, the Prime Minister gave a brief overview of the Government's work in
5 office so far, stressing the fact that Croatia had only four to five years time
6 to achieve good economic results, and that he expected Croatia to join the European
7 Union by the end of 2006. This is a very ambitious goal, said Prime Minister
8 Racan, and this Government and whoever constitutes the next Government will
9 be faced with hard work and unpopular measures. However, based on encouraging
10 indicators, rapid growth in the economy is expected by the end of the year.</p>
11 <p>
12 He then went on
13 to say that only investments in development could encourage skilled young professionals
14 with a modern vision of Croatia to stay or return to the country, which was
15 the task of the Government, while the task of leading companies like PLIVA was
16 to recruit and employ them.</p>
17 <p>Speaking about the Government's and his own personal vision for Croatia, Prime
18 Minister Racan said that Croatia was a small country with values and resources
19 that had to be recognized, that we needed to preserve the environment and show
20 that we know how to integrate global trends but remain faithful to ourselves.
21 He added that he saw Croatia as a well-off and successful country like Denmark,
22 Holland or Ireland, but also stressed that the reality, which every vision depends
23 on, was harsh.</p>
24 <p>The only thing to do is use the European integration process to accelerate
25 the development of Croatia, said the Prime Minister, adding that Croatia had
26 much to offer Europe and that this was not a one-way process.</p>
27 <p>Speaking about the informatization of the country, Racan said he wished that
28 the meetings of his Cabinet soon started to look more like the meeting he had
29 just had with PLIVA's Management Board, with computers and less piles of paper.</p>
30 <p>In conclusion, the Prime Minister also thanked the participants for not asking
31 him the usual questions about the five coalition parties or reconstruction of
32 the Government, and reiterated that the Government wanted to support and have
33 good relations with successful Croatian companies such as PLIVA that are becoming
34 more and more European and global.</p>
35 <p>PLIVA's CEO Zeljko Covic said he was glad that Prime Minister Racan was the
36 guest of the Forum and stated: "It is a pleasure to have the Prime Minister
37 and the delegation from the Government as guests. The discussions at the PLIVA
38 Forum confirmed PLIVA's readiness to contribute to building a European and highly
39 educated Croatia, based on research and technological development and other
40 advantages that Croatia has to offer".</p>
41 <p>PLIVA Forums will be held every month with prominent guests from Croatia and
42 from around the world.</p>
43 <p>For additional information please contact:</p>
44 <p>Dubravko Merlic<br>
45 Corporate Communications<br>
46 Director<br>
47 Tel: 385 1 6120 852<br>
48 Fax: 385 1 6160 358<br>
49 E-mail: <a href="mailto:Dubravko.Merlic@pliva.hr">Dubravko.Merlic@pliva.hr</a>
50 </p>

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