Membership of the European Union and access to European funds will certainly help Croatia overcome the current economic and social difficulties, European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs Olli Rehn said in Brussels on Friday.
Asked at a conference if the economic situation in Croatia was causing concern in the EU, Rehn said the EU supported Croatia in overcoming its economic and social difficulties, adding that membership and better accession to the cohesion and structural funds would help Croatia solve its economic difficulties as was the case with most Central and East European countries after they joined.
Rehn said that as a former enlargement commissioner who worked for and closely cooperated with Croatia, he wanted to wish it a warm welcome to the EU when it met the requirements.
He was participating in a conference on the EU, the economic crisis and the next steps to recovery.
Asked if he expected Slovenia to request financial assistance this year, Rehn said he did not and that he hoped the current political quakes in the country would not last long and that it would manage to preserve political stability and economic sustainability.
He said Slovenia was taking steps to solve its economic and fiscal problems, including a very important pension reform that was key for sustaining public finance.