Croatia joins eurozone, Schengen area on New Year's Day

Croatia joins eurozone, Schengen area on New Year's Day

Clients wait in line to withdraw cash at a bank in the centre of Zagreb on December 30, 2022, as the euro becomes Croatia's official currency on January 1, 2023. DENIS LOVROVIC AFP ZAGREB - Croatia entered the eurozone and the EU's border-free Schengen area on New Year's Day.

This was the first time a European country joined both the eurozone and the Schengen area on the same day, an important milestone for Croatia, an EU member since 2013.

On January 1, Croatia became the 20th member of the eurozone and the euro becomes its official currency. It became the 27th member of the Schengen area, which was created in 1985 to allow free movement for all 420 million nationals of the signatory countries.

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The dual circulation of the currency kuna and euro will last two weeks to help people adjust to the use of the euro, as of January 1, according to the dual circulation of Croatia's currency. After 12: 00 midnight on January 14, only euros will be used. Banks and post offices will continue to convert kuna into euro throughout 2023.