Agrokor Emails Published, Opposition Demands Ministerial Resignation and Investigation

Index.hr has published emails which demonstrate how Economy Minister Martina Dalić coordinated the drafting of the so-called Lex Agrokor.

Index.hr has published private e-mails by Economy Minister Martina Dalić which demonstrate how the so-called Lex Agrokor was drafted. The emails make it clear that the process of writing the law included a number of brokerage firms, consulting firms and attorneys who worked in secret for the government and later profited from it, given that, in the past year, Agrokor has paid millions for their consulting services. The emails also show that the minister tried to keep the drafting process hidden from the public and that the process mostly avoided official channels of communication, reports Index.hr on May 9, 2018.

Finance Minister Zdravko Marić is the only member of the government who has so far commented on the latest information. “I have seen the news briefly, but I wouldn't comment on the emails. I never reveal any information to anyone. At the very beginning, when things were happening, I was a small part of it, but I very quickly exited the communication, so I have no knowledge about it,” concluded Marić.

Ivan Sinčić (Živi Zid) was direct. “This is a criminal organisation; they favoured their friends. This is a parallel state in which they transferred authority to their friends and acquaintances, interest groups. Not only should Dalić leave the government, but Prime Minister Plenković as well, since he's involved. This is a major scandal which borders on treason. Elections are the only solution”, said Sinčić.

“This is inappropriate communication, such things should be discussed at working meetings, not in this unofficial way,” said MP Silvano Hrelja (HSU) speaking about the mails.

Branimir Bunjac (Živi Zid) said the emails were scandalous. “We have claimed from the very start that the entire Lex Agrokor is scandalous. This only shows how deep the level of corruption in Croatia is. Problems are being solved by a group of people whom no one has elected, and they traded with privileged information, which they used for their personal gain,” said Bunjac. “If I were the state prosecutor, I would have already taken some steps today.”

Nikola Grmoja (MOST) said the emails confirmed that Dalić wrote Lex Agrokor. “The mail shows that everything was prepared in advance, including who will work on the case and make a profit with Lex Agrokor. Given the level of political accountability in Croatia, I don't believe Plenković will resign, but Dalić should leave at least,” said Grmoja.

Božo Petrov (MOST) said the whole government should go. “This government has no future. Not only Martina Dalić but all other ministers, including the prime minister, should leave,” said Petrov.

Anka Mrak Tartiaš (GLAS) was clear. “This is a disgrace for the minister herself, but also for the institution of the ministry and the state. Martina Dalić should resign after this or Prime Minister Plenković should dismiss her. He should also dismiss himself since he knew everything,” wrote Anka Mrak Taritaš on Facebook.

On the other hand, Milorad Batinić from HNS, HDZ’s coalition partner, said there was nothing new in the published emails. “As far as Lex Agrokor is concerned, HNS did not participate in the government when the law was written. The HNS's position is that the prime minister and the minister are responsible for Agrokor. For us, it is important to preserve jobs,” Batinić said. "This is just recycling an old story."

Darinko Kosor from HSLS, also one of HDZ’s coalition partners, was ambiguous. “Of course, I do not like this correspondence. But, you know my views from before. Dalić said she proposed the law, but that she consulted with other agencies and offices. She did not name them, but now that has been revealed,” said Kosor. “That is not a question for me, that is a question for the prime minister," said Kosor when asked whether Dalić should resign.

SDP’s Gordan Maras said Dalić should be immediately dismissed. “She gave information and authority which she had received from citizens to several of her friends to work on the law and to use it to secure lucrative contracts for themselves. I call on the state attorney to get involved in investigating potential criminal offences. She involved her friends in the process, and they later earned millions,” said Maras.

Translated from Index.hr.