Government has definitely pulled country out of crisis, says deputy PM


Deputy Prime Minister Branko Grcic said on Friday that the 2.8 percent GDP growth in the third quarter of 2015 confirmed that this government had definitely pulled the country out of the crisis and that the new government and parliament should be formed as soon as possible so that the positive trends could continue.

The national statistical office said earlier on Friday that the 2.8% GDP growth in Q3 2015 was the highest since Q2 2008.

Speaking to the press, Grcic said various sources had been saying since the end of recent election campaigning that Croatia was in an extremely difficult situation economically, but that such claims were often a wish to justify “some other moves,” reiterating that Croatia had definitely come out of the recession thanks to the present government.

“But I must also tell both the Croatian public and our potential partners in the new government that we are willing to invest all our efforts, know-how and experience in continuing together to ensure Croatia’s stability, the stability of the economy, as well as economic growth. It’s a very clear message. We have proven ourselves, showing that we have been running the state responsibly and that we took it out of the recession, which lasted five or six years, to serious economic growth.”

As for comments that the economic growth rate was not high enough, Grcic said it was almost 3%, the seventh highest growth rate in Europe, and that the 1.3% growth from Q2 to Q3 was the second highest in Europe.

“Croatia is definitely gathering momentum and it’s very important that the new Croatian government and parliament are formed as soon as possible, that these negotiations (on the new government) end successfully, and that we continue to work so that these positive trends in the economy continue,” Grcic said.

He said tourist spending contributed the most to economic growth, followed by industry, and the construction sector for the first time in seven years. He said the government also contributed by launching major infrastructure projects co-financed by the European Union.

Grcic said investments grew 2.2% in Q3 2015, “giving the biggest contribution to GDP growth in this quarter.”

“The Croatian economy has definitely stabilised. We are heading in the right direction and we must maintain this direction with the support of the new government,” he added.

Asked if such economic growth increased the chances of the government being formed, Grcic reiterated this data completely eliminated every doubt about this government’s success. “We completed our term with this result. It’s an excellent result and the best guarantee to our potential partners that they have a good interlocutor in us who knows what he is doing and how to run the state and the economy.”

Tourism Minister Darko Lorencin said July, August and September were “much stronger” than last year, with September “10% stronger” than September 2014. He said spending was markedly higher and that this confirmed that this year’s tourism revenues would exceed EUR 8 billion.

Lorencin said he was especially pleased that industrial production and exports were growing and that “these are quality foundations for further development.”

The national statistical office said today that industrial production in October 2015 was 6.4% higher on the year, which was its fastest growth since May 2007.