While 2020 was a horrendous year for the vast majority of the globe, if not all of it, thanks to the emergence of the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 and its journey around the world in the form of a pandemic, Croatia also suffered two devastating earthquakes. One struck the City of Zagreb in March, and another struck Sisak-Moslavina County in Central Croatia at the very end of December that year. Known as the Petrinja earthquake, this shattering natural disaster is still fresh in people’s minds and the reconstruction process is moving at a classical snail’s pace.
The situation here in the very heart of Zagreb isn’t miles better, but when it is compared to the situation that has been left to fester in Petrinja, Glina and other nearby locations, it’s difficult to fathom how December 2020 was now so long ago.
We recently wrote about PM Andrej Plenkovic having successfully secured an EU fund use delay from the European Commission which would allow those funds from the aforementioned Solidarity Fund to be utlised until June 2023. Plenkovic has since been asked how and why that approval was given from the EC.
As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic recently commented on current events and his stay in the Belgian capital of Brussels following probes from journalists. He was also asked if Ursula von der Leyen had asked him to explain why the post-earthquake reconstruction following 2020’s natural disasters in Croatia is going so painfully slowly.
“There are two fundamental reasons for that, you have progressive damage and you’ve also got a global pandemic. These are extraordinary circumstances, they’re acts of God. Other countries had the use of the same Solidarity Fund, but not in such conditions,” explained Plenkovic.
Asked whether or not things being classed as an act of God was the only reason why the Republic of Croatia had successfully received an EU fund use delay, Plenkovic said that it was.
“I don’t know another capital city that was hit by such a strong earthquake in these circumstances,” Plenkovic briefly commented.
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