Croatia’s gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, expressed in purchasing power standards (PPS), was equal to 59% of the European Union average in 2016, pointing to a slight recovery compared to 2015 when it stood at 58% of the EU average, according to data from the EU's statistics office, Eurostat.
The Purchasing Power Standard (PPS) eliminates price level differences between countries and thus one PPS buys the same volume of goods and services in all countries. Croatia’s GDP per capita gradually declined from 62% of the EU average in 2012 to a low of 58% in 2015. Croatia, which joined the EU in July 2013, emerged from a six-year recession in 2015. The Adriatic country has posted GDP growth in the last ten quarters since the last quarter of 2014. Private consumption growth was one of the main drivers of GDP growth.
GDP growth in Croatia accelerated to 2.9% y/y in 2016 from 1.6% in 2015 thanks to private consumption growth, recovery in foreign demand and a favourable tourism season. In 2017, private consumption is also expected to stay strong thanks to expectations of another good tourism season.
The richest EU country in 2016 was Luxemburg, where GDP per capita was at 267% of the EU average, followed by Germany and Austria, while Bulgaria was the only country poorer than Croatia last year with GDP per capita equal to 48% of the EU average. Croatia ranked as the second poorest EU country in 2016. But in a regional comparison, Croatia ranked ahead of Serbia (GDP per capita at 36% of the EU28 average last year), Bosnia (31% of the EU28 average), Macedonia (38% of the EU28 average) and Montenegro (42% of the EU28 average).
Eurostat also said that Croatia’s 2016 actual individual consumption (AIC) per capita in PPS was also 59% of the EU28 average. AIC includes goods and services, which were actually consumed by individuals, irrespective of whether these goods and services are purchased and paid for by households, government or by non-profit organisations.