Croatia's economy suffered during the lockdown but is expected to do better in the third quarter as the result of a relatively good tourism season in 2020 terms (Photo: Ivo Cagalj/PIXSELL) Croatia's economy suffered during the lockdown but is expected to do better in the third quarter as the result of a relatively good tourism season in 2020 terms (Photo: Ivo Cagalj/PIXSELL)

The government expects to have the basic outlines of a recovery plan by October 15 to get the economy back on track in the wake of the crisis caused by the pandemic, Plenković told reporters at an event marking the International Day of the Disappeared.

"It is our idea that we have the outlines of that plan drawn up by October 15. After that we will fine-tune the document in communication with the European Commission, just as all other countries will be doing. Those documents are expected to be adopted by the beginning of the next year," the PM said.

Croatia's GDP fell by an unprecented 15.1% in the second quarter of this year, a consequence of the lock-down during that period that kept most of the economy at a standstill. To cope with the effects of the pandemic on the economy, Croatia is expected to have 22 billion euros from the EU at its disposal over the next seven years. Plenković said this was an excellent lever for starting a robust economic recovery in 2021.

Commenting on the drop in GDP in the second quarter, Plenkovic said that it was within expectations considering the COVID-19 lockdown during that period. He noted there was modest growth in the first quarter and results in Q3 and Q4 would give a better picture of the state of the economy.

"It's important to keep in mind that this was a very specific year. Globally, the drop is around the average that we see in other EU member states. I don't think there are any surprises here. When we look at the first six months of the year, then we are at around minus 7 and a half percent. So, for now, that is all within what was expected and projected,” he said.