As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 1st of May, 2020, although the Croatian Government predicts a GDP decline of 9.4 percent, economists warn that a much larger decline is possible. Minister Tomislav Coric is also an economist by profession, and he spoke about these concerning figures on RTL Direct.
The worst-case scenario that Croatia can more or less count on if nothing is done is a 20 percent GDP drop in which Croatian society will lose 89 billion kuna. In that case, every citizen of Croatia would have an average of around 22,000 kuna less than last year.
Tomislav Coric first revealed whether or not he would bet that Croatia’s GDP decline would be at 9, 15 or 20 percent. That is, how much this freezing of the economy and of the normality of life will actually cost us.
”I’m convinced that in the next eight months, the Croatian economy, with additional engagement and favourable circumstances in the context of the tourist season, can achieve a better result,” Tomislav Coric said, adding that it was obvious that any fall in GDP means a loss of economic power for Croatia.
“That’s a fact and we’ve been witnessing this ever since the pandemic began. That’s why we came up with a set of measures. We have already done a lot to get the Croatian economy out of this situation. If circumstances turn out to be more favoruable after June, GDP will fall below nine percent,”
He did not say what plan B was in case things go sour, but simply said that he believe we can be more optimistic about 2021. Once again, however, he still danced around the question of what precisely plan B is in case the coronavirus pandemic returns in another wave this autumn.
“Plan B always exists. The economy always works, at a higher or lower level,” Tomislav Coric said. Asked again what plan B was, he simply said: “If the economy were to be locked up again, a decline in GDP would reflect that,” but once again failed to specify any of the details of this “plan B”.
However, almost 14,000 people have been left without work in Croatia, their lives have been threatened and they need more than words from Tomislav Coric, but also from those in power.
“As far as people being out of work is concerned, what we will not experience as a result of this situation is an increase in employment. I believe that there will be no significant increase in unemployment. The measures we have put in place are there to make sure we don’t end up with even more people ending up being out of work. In the US, 26 million people have lost their jobs,” Tomislav Coric said, referring to citizens’ desire for territorial, public administration and public sector reform.
“As far as public and civil service reforms are concerned, their employees are regular citizens just like all of us. Reducing the number of employees would mean leaving even more people unemployed. Next year will be the year to reflect on all of these reforms,” he noted.
”At the government level, we’re working to further reduce the budget. We don’t want to cut the branch we’re sitting on off. Most of the funds that we need are created from debt, and Finance Minister Zdravko Maric has gone in that direction. We’ll certainly be able to borrow because we have a responsible policy,” concluded Minister Tomislav Coric.
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