The EC says that the government’s National Reform Programme is ambitious.
The European Commission on Wednesday announced five economic recommendations for Croatia and concluded that its reform programme was largely ambitious and that, provided that a permanent correction of the excessive deficit is achieved this year, Croatia could next year be moved to preventive part of the excessive deficit procedure, reports Jutarnji List on May 18, 2016.
The first EC recommendation calls on Croatia to provide a lasting correction of the excessive deficit. The second recommendation calls for the measures to discourage early retirement to be adopted by the end of this year and for the acceleration of the transition to longer work by increasing the retirement age. The third EC recommendation seeks to reduce fragmentation and improve functional distribution of authorities in the public administration system in order to increase efficiency and reduce differences in the provision of public services. In its fourth recommendation, the European Commission seeks to significantly reduce business fees, remove restrictions that hinder access to regulated professions, and reduce administrative burden for businesses. The fifth and final recommendation relates to the quality and efficiency of the judicial system in the commercial and administrative courts, and to the issue of loans which are not being repaid.
The Commission confirmed that Croatia had excessive macroeconomic imbalances, but pointed out that the level of ambition in the National Reform Programme was appropriate and confirmed the government’s intention to correct excessive imbalances. Croatia is encouraged to implement the reform programme “thoroughly and on time”.
Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković said on Wednesday that the European Commission with its assessment of the National Reform Programme confirmed the quality of the government’s work and pointed out that the reforms would be implemented. “Today is a very good day. The European Commission has issued an opinion on our National Reform Programme. The reforms that we have presented to the public and the European Commission will be carried out”, said Orešković at a press conference, adding that it could be seen that the reduction of public debt had already started. “Things are going well despite many sceptics”, said Orešković.