Speaking on Croatian Radio regarding post-earthquake reconstruction, Obuljen Koržinek said that Croatia was hit by two separate earthquakes in 2020 in the midst of COVID, when intervention was made even more difficult.
She underscored that the European Commission inspected Croatia’s intervention plans for Zagreb and for the Banovina region, where more than half the ESF was allocated, and accepted Croatia’s arguments and allowed it to absorb the entire allocation.
“The majority of projects for Zagreb that have been agreed were agreed through the Ministry of Culture and Media. We are monitoring what is being done in the field and we will certainly spend the entire allocation”, she said.
She added that this however, will only cover a minor share of what is required for reconstruction.
The ESF is earmarked exclusively for public buildings and infrastructure while the reconstruction of houses and blocks of flats will have to be covered from the state budget, she said.
First step in Banovina region were minor repairs to houses
Asked why Zagreb and Banovina aren’t the biggest construction sites, she cited numerous reasons. In the case of Zagreb that involves larger, more complex buildings, she said, this involves public procurement procedures so that the financing of such projects is transparent.
She recalled that a decision was made regarding Banovina to first deal with minor repairs, so that as many people in temporary accommodation could return to their homes.
Public procurement procedures have been launched for the construction of houses and that process will now be accelerated, she added.
She also underscored that the timeframe for the reconstruction of houses depends on a lot of factors and owners too have an important role and there are a lot of problems with ownership rights.
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