Four Possible Scenarios for Croatian Political Future

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After Sunday’s elections, where does Croatia go?

After yesterday’s elections results, there are four possible scenarios for the immediate political future in Croatia. Under the leadership of Andrej Plenković, HDZ has recovered and he is now in the best position to form a new government. However, the key role will also belong to MOST, since without them there will probably be no government, reports Jutarnji List on September 12, 2016.

HDZ – MOST – Milan Bandić – Minority MPs
Andrej Plenković will form a coalition with MOST. This is the most realistic option, although HDZ and MOST will need additional coalition partners, primarily two MPs belonging to Milan Bandić and representatives of national minorities. If Plenković reaches an agreement with this group, the government with him as prime minister would have the support of more than 80 MPs, and quite a solid majority. The chances for this scenario are quite high. Serbian minority leader Milorad Pupovac has repeatedly praised Plenković in interviews. In addition, Serbian party SDSS clearly wants to enter the new government because they do not want to miss this opportunity. The key will be Petrov and whether he will continue to insist on his demands for entering into a coalition, some of which are difficult to implement. That implies new, long negotiations and a series of currently unforeseen additional conditions with Petrov and his team might demand. Since Bandić has just two MPs, it would be possible to form this coalition even without him.

SDP – MOST – IDS – Minority MPs
SDP would probably accept everything in order to join forces with MOST, but that attempt would almost certainly fail. SDP president Milanović is completely unacceptable to MOST, and Petrov has also issued an ultimatum which would require the SDP-led People’s Coalition to get rid of HNS president Vrdoljak and HSS president Krešo Beljak, heads of two parties of the People’s Coalition. Even if they were to agree such a coalition, it would be an alliance condemned to swift destruction. However, according to latest rumours, Milanović probably will not be SDP president for too much longer.

This is not a very likely scenario, especially since HDZ has more parliamentary seats than SDP and its coalition partners. Croatia would get a stable government with a two-thirds parliamentary majority but, on the other hand, it would mean there would be no serious opposition and that would create a political system which would be appropriate only if the country was facing a major crisis, which is still not the case.

New elections
The Constitution provides for the President to name as Prime Minister-Designate a person who enjoys the confidence of the majority of all MPs. The Prime Minister-Designate then has 30 days to form a government, although that period can be extended for further 30 days. If there is still no new government, President can name another Prime Minister-Designate, who then has 30 days to try to do the same. If that second attempt does not succeed, than the President would be able to appoint a caretaker non-political government and call new parliamentary elections. However, that is the least likely option.


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