Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Zdravko Maric Unenthusiastic About Martina Dalic's Agrokor Book

In case you didn't know, Martina Dalic, the former deputy prime minister who spent a long time at Andrej Plenkovic's side, left her position earlier this year amid not only the Hotmail affair, in which she was sending highly sensitive emails via no less than Hotmail, but amid growing suspicion surrounding her in regard to the very messy Agrokor affair.

Now, despite the public's general opinion of her being less than sparkling and with all sorts of unsavoury suspicions and accusations about her involvement in Agrokor still flying around, left unanswered, Martina Dalic went ahead and published a book on Agrokor, causing raised eyebrows among many politicians, including MOST's leader Bozo Petrov, who was heavily involved in the Agrokor situation when it first came to light, especially given the fact that the crisis saw the former HDZ-MOST coalition collapse.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Tomislav Pili writes on the 30th of October, 2018, Finance Minister Zdravko Maric, who felt the very personal unpleasantness of the Agrokor crisis on his own skin, stated quite bluntly that he didn't have any desire to comment on whether or not Martina Dalic should return to the government at all.

Marić used to work for Agrokor before taking up his position within the Croatian Government, this caused a lot of suspicion around him, too, as many across the political spectrum and in the general public failed to believe that he had no knowledge of the plethora of underhand deals and the threatening collapse of the company that eventually raised its ugly head in the spring of 2017. Despite the controversy, Maric stuck to his guns and held onto his position, with the situation eventually blowing over. Despite that, it doesn't come as much of a surprise that he'd prefer to avoid discussing Martina Dalic or her new book.

"I've got a good relationship with all the people I've worked with and am working with now, and if we have some disagreement, then we find a common language," the finance minister said briefly.

''I haven't read Martina Dalic's book and I don't know if I'll manage to,'' Maric added at the margins of Poslovni Dnevnik's conference. In response to a journalist's question as to whether everything worked well in regard to Agrokor's extraordinary administration, and why Martina Dalic had to leave, Maric expressed his lack of desire to comment on whether or not she should return to the government.

As for the dangers the Uljanik shipyard situation represents towards public debt, Maric said Uljanik's influence will of course have an effect on the overall fiscal policy outcome for this year.

"The only good thing about it is that it will have a one-off effect. From our side, we intend to solve [the situation] as soon as possible so as to avoid any further consequences. Nevertheless, by the end of the year, according to our projections and expectations, public debt will continue to decline,'' Maric emphasised.

"With regard to taking further steps, we can't influence the worsening global environment that much, but do we have certain mechanisms in our hands. I, as finance minister, am responsible for implementing fiscal policy. All we propose is a responsible, rational fiscal policy that suits all of the challenges we're facing. We're putting emphasis on a more stable public debt, but the basic idea of us all should be ​​economic growth, which will lead to stronger employment growth,'' Maric noted.

Journalists present at the conference in were also very interested in the disappearance of the so-called "mantra" about budget savings which has been being talking about a lot over recent years.

"I wouldn't say that is stopped. If you look at the structure of the expenditure side of the budget, the biggest item is the retirement expenditure. It's true that the issue of expenditure has been challenged more than once and we must not give up on that. We reduced interest costs by over two billion kuna, but we're still paying too much,'' Maric said.

Regarding retirement, the question of whether or not retirement benefits in the new Law on Croatian Defenders represent a budgetary burden arose, to which Maric responded that his ministry had looked into potential financial implications during the process of the adoption of the naw Law on Croatian Defenders.

"The Law on Croatian Defenders is fiscally viable and isn't an additional burden for the budget," Maric concluded.

Want to find out more about what exactly happened within Agrokor and learn more about Martina Dalic's role within it all? Click here and follow the news on Dalić, the Hotmail affair, the writing of Lex Agrokor, and more.

 

Click here for the original article by Tomislav Pili for Poslovni Dnevnik

Thursday, 25 October 2018

GDP Growth Projections Lowered

ZAGREB, October 25, 2018 - The Croatian National Bank (HNB) Council discussed on Wednesday the latest economic and monetary trends, as well as a report on the situation in the banking system in the first half of the year, adopting a monetary policy projection for the period from 2018 to 2021, and several other decisions from its remit, the HNB said in a statement.

Thursday, 27 September 2018

GDP Growth to Remain Steady Next Year

ZAGREB, September 27, 2018 - Next year, the Croatian economy is expected to grow roughly at the same rate as this year, or "slightly below three percent of GDP", Croatian National Bank (HNB) Governor Boris Vujčić said on Wednesday, warning of the first signs of external risks.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Location for Croatian “Fort Knox” Sought

The Croatian National Bank is looking for a location for Croatia’s central treasury.

Friday, 18 May 2018

Bank System to Remain Stable Regardless of Agrokor Outcome

ZAGREB, May 18, 2018 - Croatian National Bank (HNB) Governor Boris Vujčić said that even if a solution is not reached in the ailing Agrokor food and retail conglomerate, the banking system will remain stable and banks well capitalised.

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Croatia’s GDP to Grow Less Than 3%

ZAGREB, May 17, 2018 - Croatian National Bank (HNB) governor Boris Vujčić said on Thursday he expected GDP to grow less than 3% this year and the next, that structural reforms remained necessary, and that technological development could markedly reduce economic problems caused by demographic trends.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Croatia's Foreign Currency Reserves at Record Levels

ZAGREB, May 16, 2018 - Croatia's gross international reserves reached 16.5 billion euro in March 2018, their record level in nominal terms, Raiffeisenbank Austria (RBA) said in a report on Wednesday.

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Central Bank Buys Euros to Keep Kuna Value Down

ZAGREB, May 10, 2018 - The Croatian National Bank (HNB) intervened on the foreign exchange market on Thursday by purchasing 320.5 million euro from commercial banks to prevent appreciation pressure on the domestic currency, the kuna.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Why Does Croatia Have No Gold Reserves?

What happened to Croatian gold reserves?

Monday, 23 April 2018

Tourism Is Most Important Sector, But How Much Are We Making?

How well is the Croatian economy actually doing owing to tourism? Despite the constant talks and praise, it would seem that nobody actually knows.

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