MP Proposes Introduction of Cash Payments in Euros in Croatia

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Maro Kristić wants tourists to be able to pay in euros.

MOST’s candidate for mayor of Dubrovnik and member of Parliament Maro Kristić proposed today in Parliament an introduction of option of paying in euros in Croatia. He says that the move would increase revenue and competitiveness in the tourism and hospitality sector, reports Večernji List on March 23, 2017.

“Due to procedures, crowds, and shortness of their stay, many tourists do not have time to wait in front of exchange bureaus because the time spent is limited”, said Kristić. He added that during the tourist season many guests, particularly those coming on cruising ships, give up on eating and buying souvenirs, which means that millions of euros are lost.

“Estimates show that we are talking about millions of euros. The introduction of these measures would require certain amendments to the Law on Foreign Currency and changes to certain regulations in the jurisdiction of the Croatian National Bank. This would not be something completely new, because this measure already exists in Croatia on the basis of the consent of the Croatian National Bank given in ​​2011. If banks and exchange bureaus do not work, bars and restaurants can accept foreign currency and they have three days to deposit it into their bank account. Most business owners do not even know for this option, but it does not include all business sectors. It only envisions the possibility of receiving foreign currency in exceptional situations, so it is completely impractical”, explained Kristić.

“The key point is that it would be limited, so it would not amount to the full-scale introduction of the euro. It would be an incentive measure. The tax reform brought some changes to the hospitality industry. We have proposed a variety of measures. I discussed it a lot with caterers and trade sector, and one of the measures that would help would be the limited introduction of the euro. Studies have shown that tens of millions of euros are not being spent”, said Kristić.

“I call on professional associations in the hospitality sector, tourism and trade to give their own proposals, so that we can prepare a good law which would bring desired effects in terms of increased revenue and competitiveness of the sector”, concluded Kristić.

Asked about the proposal, Finance Minister Zdravko Marić sounded surprised. “No one asked ma anything about it. I have not been informed. There are laws, primarily the Law on Croatian National Bank and the Law on Foreign Currency”, said Marić.


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