PM Plenkovic: Increased health care costs are main reason for budget revision

NEWS 01.06.2021 20:57
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Andrej Plenković
Source: Davorin Visnjic/PIXSELL

Prime Minister and Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) leader, Andrej Plenkovic, said on Tuesday that costs accumulated in the healthcare system were the main reason for revising this year's budget and the target would be to have a budget gap of 3.8 percent, state agency Hina said.

“The main reason are costs in the health care system as well as overall costs against a backdrop of the Covid-19 crisis impacting also other sectors. Our target is to have a budget deficit of 3.8 percent. All that has been projected under the current circumstances,” Plenkovic told the press after a meeting of leaders of parties in the HDZ-led ruling coalition in Zagreb.

The projected budget deficit will be similar to the situations in other EU member countries, and it will enable Croatia to continue its journey towards membership of the euro area, “which is most important,” Hina quoted Plenkovic as saying.

Plenkovic also said that an increase in the budget allocation for health included the debt to drug suppliers.

Plenkovic ‘regrets HPD had failed to respond’ to Milanovic’s invective against Puhovski

Asked by the press about the Croatian Political Science Association’s (HPD) condemnation of his criticism leveled against political scientist Drazen Lalic hired as a political analyst for RTL television, Plenkovic said that he regretted the association failed to respond to President Zoran Milanovic’s statements against political scientist Zarko Puhovski, which, he said, were “much fiercer.”

“What I said are facts and the truth,” he added.

Plenkovic elaborated that members of the general public were not aware of the political background and affiliations of such pundits and for what they agitated.

“I am aware and I can see,” he said, noting that such analysts were not independent and unbiased when commenting on the campaign and elections.

Asked to comment on the fact that not only media but also the HDZ branch in Zagreb’s suburb of Tresnjevka misnamed the HDZ’s mayoral candidate on its website, he said he did not know about that.

On Monday, Plenkovic had accused two television channels of “ostensibly accidentally, but actually intentionally misnaming” the HDZ’s mayoral candidate in Zagreb, Davor Filipovic.

Today he insisted that the influence of those media was “huge” while the local HDZ branch “had probably corrected the misspelled name on the same day it had happened.” Answering a reporter’s question, Plenkovic said that he “did not have a fixation with media,” Hina reported.

“If I had a fixation with media, the HDZ would not have won 75 percent of counties, 45 percent of cities and municipalities (in the local elections),” he said, adding that his cabinet and the government were focused on solving issues on the agenda.

N1 television’s reporter Hrvoje Kresic ironically remarked that if Plenkovic wanted to be a media editor, he could apply for a vacancy advertised by N1, to which Plenkovic responded: “I must admit that all of you have become a bit too much arrogant.”

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