Croatia’s main political parties to sit down and discuss forming a government in earnest.
MOST has announced that negotiations with SDP and HDZ will commence, with justice and entrepreneurship being the topics of the first day of discussions. While MOST say they demand guarantees that the reforms will be implemented, the leaders of the two main coalitions – Zoran Milanović (Croatia Is Growing) and Tomislav Karamarko (Patriotic Coalition) say they are optimistic and glad the negotiations are starting, reports Novilist and Vecernji List on November 17, 2015.
Milanović said he believes that he will come to an agreement with MOST as a united group, while Karamarko said that HDZ has a good program and good partners. MOST first met with SDP and HDZ several days ago, when they proposed the formation of a government of national unity.
Negotiations with SDP will begin at 10 am at the SDP party headquarters, while the meeting with HDZ will start at 1 pm at HDZ headquarters. MOST said that the members of their negotiating team will be available for comments after the meetings.
Representatives of minorities in the next parliament decided yesterday to give their preliminary support to SDP’s Croatia Is Growing coalition. Later, they met in the parliament building with SDP president and current Prime Minister Zoran Milanović. After the meeting, he said that he will probably have the support of the eight minority representatives, but added that it will be definitely known in a few days. “We have been working with them well during the last four years, and I believe we can do even better. As we can see, most of them have quite convincing won another term in office, which suggests that their communities are satisfied with their cooperation with the government”, Milanović said and added that minority representatives will probably sign their official support by the end of the week.
“This is just a preliminary support. Of course, there will be further discussions and formalization of this. The same applies to MOST. We think it would be best and most natural to continue together with the support of MOST. I am more modest and more realistic than our political rivals”, Milanović explained. He admitted that SDP’s coalition needs the support of MOST. “Now, we begin with negotiations and we know exactly what we will say, what we can accept.” He does not believe that he undermined the chances for an agreement with MOST by meeting secretly with Drago Prgomet a few days ago. He claims that he has spoken with him about 50 times during the last three months. “Yes, we have me and we will surely meet again. It was not a secret meeting, and the meeting was held at his suggestion in the apartment of Ante Kotromanović. Do not tell me that other people aren’t having discussions as well”, Milanović concluded.
HDZ President Tomislav Karamarko said that the issue of future prime minister will be discussed at the end of negotiations with MOST, emphasizing that it is more important to solve the economic crisis. “The economic problems are crucial problems in the country and we need to begin to solve them”, Karamarko told reporters when asked whether he was willing to give up the post of prime minister if MOST demanded it.
He stressed that, during negotiations with MOST, they will insist that some of the posts should belong to HDZ, but the government will mostly be composed of experts. “Each segment of the reforms and projects we have prepared together with the German IFO Institute should be implemented by experts”, he said. Asked by reporters, Karamarko answered that he had not received the information that all the representatives of national minorities had decided to support SDP.