The renowned news agency reports on Croatia’ economic situation.
In an article written by Igor Ilić, Reuters on May 23, 2016, published a news analysis from Zagreb about Croatia’s economic situation and government’s attempts to implement reforms. Here are the highlights of the report.
“The months-old Croatia centre-right government has vowed – in line with EU recommendations – to cut red tape, scrap various fees, and reduce public debt by cost-cutting at state-owned firms as well as reforming the health and pension sectors. But critics, including the national employers’ association, HUP, say the main worry is implementation. Successive Croatian governments failing put promised reforms into action. “The EU’s recommendations are in line with what we have been saying all the time and we welcome the plan for reforms, but we can see that implementation will be challenging,” HUP’s director Davor Majetić said.
Many Croats doubt political leaders will change the business environment quickly enough to make a difference. “The fact that people are leaving or planning to leave is a direct reflection of dissatisfaction with the failure of the government to drive the economy forward,” political analyst, Davor Gjenero, said.
Despite President Kolinda Grabar Kitarović urging the government to enact reforms as soon as possible as “buses of young people are leaving the country daily”, ministers are already arguing over aspects of the package. Public sector trade unions have also indicated their resistance.
With only a thin parliamentary majority, the government is wary of forcing through painful changes as it tries to hold together the coalition between the conservative HDZ party and its small reformist coalition partner MOST. “For an economic reorganisation, many laws will have to be changed and we’ve yet to see how homogeneous the ruling coalition can be. I’m afraid we will eventually see watered-down reforms,” economic analyst, Damir Novotny, said.”
It is clear from this report that skepticism about the capability of the government to implement reforms is not confined just to Croatian media.