HDZ: If MOST Puts Forward Unreasonable Demands, We Could Form Minority Government

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HDZ warns MOST that it has other options to form a government.

“It is clear that there are those who want to derail our negotiations with MOST. However, those of us who are members of negotiating committees have created good atmosphere and I am sure we will be successful”, said Davor Ivo Stier, a member of HDZ’s team for negotiations with MOST and a close associate of HDZ president Andrej Plenković, reports Jutarnji List on September 18, 2016.

Stier reacted to unofficial information published by the media that MOST demands to have seven ministries in the future government. That would be one ministry more that they had in the previous government, and the new one would be the Entrepreneurship Ministry, currently led by HDZ’s Darko Horvat. Their argument for such a claim supposedly is the fact that they have won 13 seats, which is one more than they had before the dissolution of Parliament, and that they are now ready to accept HDZ’s candidate for Prime Minister.

“In direct conversations with the MOST negotiating team, I have not noticed anything which could be called an ultimatum. Just the opposite. I think they have learned from previous experience, and it seems to me that they have started to function as a political party”, said another member of HDZ’s negotiating team. However, he added that the only topics of discussions so far were MOST’s seven demands, and that the potential programme for the next government will be negotiated next week. Only then it will be possible to discuss the number of ministries which each side would get.

“The fact is that we have started discussions with MOST. We respect the fact that they have won 13 seats in Parliament. They have been confirmed by voters as a relevant political actor. We are currently discussing the seven issues which MOST mentioned even before the voting took place”, said HDZ president Plenković.

MOST leaders Božo Petrov and Miroslav Šimić did not want to comment on media allegations about the party’s demands.

HDZ warns that, although MOST is their natural partner for a ruling coalition, it is not the only possible option. “We have to respect the fact that they have 13 seats, but they also must respect that HDZ has 61 seats”, said a source from HDZ leadership, not ruling out the possibility that, if MOST were to make unreasonable demands, HDZ could form a minority government. Also, the media have speculated about the possibility of HDZ entering into coalition with HNS or HSS, SDP’s coalition partners, if an agreement with MOST becomes impossible. And, at least some national minorities MPs are almost certain to support HDZ’s government in any case.


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