Leko: HNB governor’s reaction came too late


Croatian Parliament Speaker Josip Leko said on Monday that he was not surprised by Croatian National Bank (HNB) Governor Boris Vujcic’s reaction to the government’s proposed solution to the problem of loans denominated in Swiss francs, noting that it “came too late”.

“The reaction by Governor Vujcic did not surprise me, but his views and reaction came too late. It should be noted that we are all on the Croatian ship and no one can say that they are not on it regardless of their legal obligations, including the HNB. The HNB is responsible for the Croatian economy, finances and banks and could have responded much earlier,” Leko said in an interview with Croatian Radio.
He confirmed that Parliament would discuss the bills with which the government aims to solve the issue of CHF-pegged loans on Thursday and expressed hope they would be adopted on Friday, unanimously.
“I expect the bills will be adopted unanimously because this (bank-client) relationship is unfair. Citizens have to pay back what they did not receive, regardless of whether they were aware or there was a defect of consent when the agreement was concluded. I hope the debate will be dominated by arguments rather than pre-election rhetoric,” Leko said.
He added that he hoped that the MPs would direct their efforts at seeking a fair and optimum solution “so that the banks would remain interested in continuing to operate in Croatia and would also be responsible for the products they designed, used and offered to the public.”
Commenting on the demand by the Franak association of holders of CHF loans that Vujcic step down, Leko said that it was “a political demand without an institutional framework.”
Leko also said that he expected that the parliamentary groups of the ruling coalition would soon submit a formal proposal for the dissolution of Parliament on September 25. He would not speculate about the date of elections, saying that elections were called by the President of the Republic.
“It makes no difference to me or to citizens when elections will take place. What is important is that on election day citizens are confident that they are voting for the best option,” Leko said. He stressed that he would not want the election campaign to be reduced to recriminations and that he would want voters to be offered arguments and facts.