Paladina Appointed Minister to Step Up Reconstruction, Plenković Says

By 20 April 2022
Paladina Appointed Minister to Step Up Reconstruction, Plenković Says
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ZAGREB, 20 April 2022 - Prime Minister Andrej Plenković said on Wednesday that Construction, Physical Planning and State Assets Minister Ivan Paladina was brought into the government to step up post-earthquake reconstruction and that it was up to him to explain everything concerning his assets.

"He was brought in to step up the reconstruction process, including public infrastructure, private houses and buildings in both Zagreb and the Banovina region. That's his job," Plenković said in parliament during Question Time.

He was responding to Ivana Posavec Krivec of the Social Democrats, who asked why Paladina assumed the full responsibility of a minister when there were so many "unknowns" and suspect questions about him.

Plenković said Paladina had experience in construction and in running projects in the private sector.

"If you appoint someone who is a politician and has legitimacy, who is part of the parliamentary majority, it's not good. If you appoint someone from the public sector who has not earned even one kuna in the government sector so far and who told me he could explain and justify everything he has, then that's it."

Plenković said Paladina came from the private sector and took a risk, adding that Paladina presented a five-point plan to step up reconstruction, that the government and the ministries involved had many meetings, and that he himself made sure that Croatia could spend European Solidarity Fund money for the reconstruction longer than planned.

"That's an incentive so that, with that and other sources, we can deal with reconstruction, which will take years," Plenković said.

He added that he had "great expectations (of Paladina). It's up to him to explain everything concerning his assets because that has nothing to do with either you or me. What concerns me is that he addresses and steps up the reconstruction process or another subject, whether it's construction, physical planning or state assets."

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