Opposition Warns Government about Budget and Energy Policies

Total Croatia News

New SDP leadership is trying to reposition the party.

The first meeting of the newly-elected SDP Main Committee began on Sunday morning in Zagreb. New party president Davor Bernardić pointed out that SDP would oppose government policies by assuming responsibility for every citizen and by taking part in a struggle for a society equal opportunities, adding that they were ready to cooperate with the ruling parties when it comes to protection of Croatian national interests, reports Nacional on December 11, 2016.

Bernardić criticized HDZ saying that the proposed 2017 state budget was “inflated and dancing on the edge” and accusing the ruling coalition that “they only think about how to take money from people, and not about how to create new economic value ​​and new jobs”.

“In recent days, we have started a fight for the people who live from their work, especially for those who have lowest salaries. There are 50,000 such people and we have proposed a law on minimum wage which would enable these people to get 286 kuna more starting from 1 January, but the ruling parties rejected our proposal”, said Bernardić and added that SDP had prepared about a hundred amendments to the 2017 budget regarding investments in the economy, science, innovation and young people.

“We are ready to cooperate with the ruling parties when it comes to the protection of Croatian national interests. One of them is INA, and the European Commission recently ordered proceedings against Croatia due to this very company. We have asked the ruling coalition to inform us about the issue,” said Bernardić, emphasizing that the protection of national interests was above any partisanship.

On Thursday, the European Commission asked Croatia to amend the Law on Privatization of INA because it allegedly violates the principle of the free movement of capital and freedom of establishment, which are commitments which Croatia accepted back in 2010 during the accession negotiations with the European Union. Prime Minister Plenković said that Croatia would continue talks with the European Commission about this requirement and that for Croatia it is strategically important to maintain a very clear position in the arbitration proceedings in order to protect national interests and INA as a strategic company.

Bernardić today said that the Croatian energy sector was “a long ping-pong game between a succession of governments”. We must find a way for Croatian Electric Company (HEP) to avoid what happened with INA, said Bernardić and added that his party expected from HDZ “to give us a pleasant surprise and protect Croatian national interests when it comes to INA”.


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