The conference was organised by the Večerjni List daily and the Vindija food processor. Marić said that regardless of the current situation and challenges Croatia is faced with, it has to see the priorities that have been worked on for many years, and one of those is introducing the euro currency.
Introducing the euro is considered to be positive for the economy and society.
“I consider that Croatia has more benefit from introducing the euro than any possible lack or fault. The changes and adaptations that are required to be implemented need to emphasise and realise all those benefits while fear and faults have to be brought to the least possible measure,” said Marić.
Marić recalled that loans and deposits would be converted to the euro automatically on 1 January 2023 while cash would be exchanged without any fee in the first year in commercial banks, the FINA agency and post offices. After that, it will be possible to exchange coins at the Croatian National Bank (HNB) for a period of three years and banknotes for an unlimited time.
Vindija food company CEO Nenad Klepač said that he mostly expected Croatia to benefit from joining the euro area.
“It will contribute to the long-term improvement of living standards for the Croatian population. We see a lot of new opportunities, primarily on the markets of the euro area, in 19 countries with a population of 340 million,” said Klepač.
Erste Bank CEO Christoph Schoefboeck said that the introduction of the euro would be exceptionally demanding and expensive for Croatia’s banking system and that the one-off cost was estimated at 80-100 million euros. Schoefboeck nevertheless believes that euro introduction will have a positive effect on the Croatian economy and society.