ZAGREB, May 12, 2020 – Opposition parties in parliament on Tuesday criticised the 2020 budget revision, saying that it does not give any answers for the period after June when job-keeping measures will expire, and warned of a possible sudden increase in unemployment.
“The revision is gauged for the period until June 15 and does not provide any answers as to what will happen after that. That is when the key measure to preserve jobs expires,” said Branko Grčić (SDP), asking what would happen with the 500,000 jobs after June 15.
“Where is the decision to extend that measure for three months? Where is the money to finance that measure? There isn’t any…” said Grčić.
He believes that 500,000 people will end up in the Employment Service while money to cover their unemployment allowances has not been included in the budget revision.
Grčić added that all countries in the neighbourhood had introduced measures to help the business sector but also measures for households and that only consumption and demand can maintain any economic activity in the short term.
Nikola Grmoja (MOST) said that it’s obvious from the budget revision that the election is at the front door and that budget spending is not being reduced while a drastic drop in revenue is expected. He, too, warned of the possible sudden increase in unemployment once the government’s measures expire.
He called out the government and ruling majority for protecting banks because they did not adopt a decision on a loan and interest payment moratorium.
Grozdana Perić of the ruling HDZ party refuted criticism that the government was protecting only certain sectors, noting that it considered all economic activities important.
She added that the budget revision was a consequence of the coronavirus crisis and that Croatia would emerge from the current crisis much sooner than had been the case earlier.
More budget news can be found in the Business section.