Energy Minister: Dalic's successor will not have an easy job

Energy Minister: Dalic's successor will not have an easy job Izvor: N1

The Environmental Protection and Energy Minister, Tomislav Coric, said on Tuesday he still has not spoken to the Prime Minister, Andrej Plenkovic, on the rumours that he would be the one to succeed Martina Dalic as the new Economy Minister and Deputy Prime Minister.

Martina Dalic resigned on Monday amid a scandal involving leaked e-mails which revealed her correspondence with private businesses and law firms in the process of drafting the law on government appointed crisis management.

Coric said that whoever succeeds Dalic will have their work cut out for them, because the work she was doing was extremely difficult.

"If you look at problems like Agrokor and Petrokemija, there is no one who would exactly be thrilled to take on the job of the next Croatian Economy Minister," Coric said.

Agrokor, the indebted food and retail conglomerate, is the biggest privately-owned company in Croatia, which employed some 60,000 people in the region before its debt crisis began in early 2017.

The crisis in Agrokor was the reason for the law on crisis management, dubbed Lex Agrokor in the media. Passed in April 2017, the law allows the government to intervene and appoint crisis managers at companies deemed big enough to be important to the economy at large.

Petrokemija, an ailing state-owned fertiliser producer based in the central town of Kutina, is currently in the process of recapitalisation, and looking for investors. The company has posted a €19.8 million loss in 2017.

Coric said that the government has shown exceptional agility in the last year, in dealing with Agrokor and other issues.

"We are primarily dealing with economic issues which have been brewing for over 20 years. Whoever gains Prime Minister Plenkovic's confidence, and takes over that position, will really have to roll up their sleeves and spend all their time dealing with topics which thousands of jobs in Croatia depend on," Coric said.

The Prime Minister said today that he would present his candidate for the position of Economy Minister and Deputy Prime Minister next week, with the vote scheduled for Friday.

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