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Perspectives des relations africaines de la Croatie en tant que membre imminent de la zone euro

Kohnert, Dirk (2022): Perspectives des relations africaines de la Croatie en tant que membre imminent de la zone euro.

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In July 2020 the EU parliament voted in favour to Croatia’s bid to become the newest member of the eurozone from 1 January 2023. It fulfilled all the criteria for adopting the euro, despite the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, high inflation, and the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Croatia's accession to the euro will be the first significant positive step in the European integration process since Brexit. It may depict perspectives for further enlargement of the eurozone in the Balkans. The admission will also impact EU Africa relations. Alongside its close foreign relations with South Africa, Zagreb established diplomatic relations with South Sudan, Somalia, and the Central African Republic in 2020. Yet, regarding Croatia's long-established African relations it would be decisive to take account of the lessons learned from its multifaceted African relations history. Croatian explorers like Dragutin Lerman, mostly unknown outside their home country, had been active in exploring Sub-Saharan African countries in the early 20th century. During the Cold War, political and economic relations between Yugoslavia (including Croatia) and the African nonaligned countries improved significantly in the period between 1973 and 1981. Mutual economic cooperation between nonaligned countries was encouraged to fight ‘underdevelopment’ in Africa. Thus, within the framework of industrial cooperation, two Yugoslav-Ghanaian joint ventures were formed in 1971, for example for forest exploitation and wood processing and a joint factory for the production of motorcycles and pumps in Ghana. Moreover, Yugoslavia was the only non-African country which participated in the funding of the Liberation Committee of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), although Zagreb preferred bilateral relations with individual liberation movements. Yet, during the process of transition, both Croatia and South Africa experienced difficulties with the illicit arms trade due to high levels of corruption within the judicial system and police. Also, the citizens of both countries lack of trust in the state's capacity to impose social control opened the way for organized crime to work with impunity. Criminal groups used patron-client relationships with the citizens of South Africa and Croatia, to build and sustain a level of popular legitimacy that the state was lacking.

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