President Says She Isn’t In Conflict with Plenković

Lauren Simmonds

Despite her recent criticism of Andrej Plenković’s government policies, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović insists the two aren’t in conflict.

Demography is the key of all the issues, the president said.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 12th of November, 2017, Croatia’s president Kolinda Grabar Kitarović dismissed claims that she was in conflict with Prime Minister Andrei Plenković, but added that her goal was to warn the state of way things stand and announced that she had requested to convene a session of the National Security Council about the situation in Agrokor from him.

In an interview with Dnevnik Nova TV, she stressed that demography is “the key of all the issues”.

“Demography is the key of all the issues, but this is an issue I’ve been warning [people] about since the beginning of my mandate, and before that, as well as on other social issues problems and economic developments. I also had the same approach to Prime Minister Milanović’s and Orešković’s governments, which I also warned about the need to tackle such problems,” she said in answer to the question of why she chose this timing for her fierce criticism of the prime minister.

She stressed that she would like to be in more frequent contact with Prime Minister Plenković.

“I’d like for us to talk and be in touch a bit more,” she added.

The president has rejected numerous allegations about herself and the PM being in some sort of conflict.

“No, we’re not in conflict, my goal is to be very realistic, not optimistic, nor pessimistic, but to warn [people] of the state that exists in the country, because it’s my duty to citizens and it’s my constitutional obligation as well. I repeat, we’re talking about a constructive debate that should lead to finding a solution to the current situation that we’re in,” she added.

She stressed that she isn’t thinking about a second mandate yet.

“I think there is too much debate about elections in Croatia, and too little of what we’ve done and what we do within the framework of our mandates, and there are two more years until the elections. What I’m currently doing is focusing on the duty I have and I want to carry it in the same way as I promised to,” she said.

Asked whether or not she would seek HDZ’s support if she decides to go for a second term, she replied that she joined HDZ as a very young person and didn’t leave the party even in its most difficult moments.

”When I became President, moreso when I was elected as a Presidential candidate, that was an extraordinary honour. I’d never have won that election had it not been for the work of countless volunteers in the field and the work of the party in the field,” she noted that she’d talk about HDZ’s support when the time comes for that.

“So far, we haven’t talked, at this point, I’m not thinking about another mandate, but about how best to do my job, my job in this mandate,” she added.

She also said that she has no contact with HDZ’s former president, Tomislav Karamarko.

Talking about the opposition’s work, she said the opposition had the right to question.

”However, I’d like the discussions in the Parliament to be much more constructive, with a lot more suggestions and solutions to issues, so that they’re at the level of the behavior of parliamentarians because, unfortunately, discussions in the Parliament are quite futile,”

The president also made sure to state that she wasn’t at all aware of the messy situation in Agrokor until things had reached crisis level earlier this year.

“Before my visit to Russia, Deputy PM Martina Dalić briefed me on the situation in Agrokor twice, which was during the 9th and 10th months of this year,” she said, adding that it was necessary to provide more information to the Croatian public.

”But I believe that the Government, on the other hand, has taken all the necessary steps to stabilise the Croatian economy above all, because the Agrokor Group is one of the key companies for the stability of the Croatian economy. Even outside of Croatia.”

When asked whether it would be necessary to convene a session of the National Security Council, she said that she’d have to agree all of that personally with the Prime Minister.

“At this point, I think it’s time to discuss all these issues at a session of the National Security Council, especially in light of some of the latest events,” she said, stating that she’d put the idea forward to Plenković.

She also said that after her visit to Russia, the issue of Agrokor’s debt was no longer a question of the state debt as a question of what the state should return, but a corporate issue.

”I think that’s a big step forward,” she added. She also noted that the head of Sberbank’s administration expressed concerns about the debts that Agrokor had with Sberbank, but that there were no more talks about it.

She also announced a trip to America in early December, marking the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Croatia and the United States.


Translated from


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