'Moderate forecasts'

Milanovic says gov't measures aimed at stimulating economy

28.01.2012 u 17:27


Croatia cannot be changed radically, it cannot change for the better of for the worse in six months, but the climate can be improved, Croatian Prime Minister and Social Democratic Party (SDP) leader Zoran Milanovic said in his address to the SDP Women's Forum in Zagreb on Saturday.

Measures and tax reliefs we are offering should be stimulating and ensure more money for the economy, and should also encourage new investments, Milanovic said.

The government will have to kick-start some investments in the energy sector and railways. We do not have much time, he added.

Milanovic said that the 2012 budget would be adopted before the expiry of legal deadlines, adding that it would have an effect on Croatia's credit rating, the stability of the government and on the confidence in the current government.

As for the draft budget his cabinet recently endorsed, the forecasts are moderate and cautious, he added.

We do not expect miracles. If we pull the country from this numbness and lethargy in any way, it will mean that we have done at least some of the work, he said.

Milanovic called on big corporations making great profits to show more empathy and social sensibility and engagement. "Their logic cannot be profit only," he said.

By introducing slightly higher taxes on profits and on safe earnings of the rich and the biggest, we are making it possible for them, through no taxes on re-invested profit, to reinvest that profit into the creation of new jobs, Milanovic said.

As for the 22 January referendum at which two thirds of Croats voted for Croatia's accession to the European Union, Milanovic said that it had determined the country's course.

However, a higher turnout had been expected than was the case. People are tired and distrustful with reason, he added.

In his speech Milanovic said that of 61 SDP members of parliament, 21 were women.

The head of the Women's Forum, Gordana Sobol, said that the Forum had 155 branches throughout Croatia, consisting of 12,000 women.