The main topic of the first session of the new government today was the Law on Reconstruction of Earthquake-Damaged Buildings in Zagreb and its Surroundings.
The government wants a consensus to be reached in parliament and among other things the law stipulates that the state will finance 60 percent of the costs to repair private buildings.
“The ten second earthquake will probably mean ten years of reconstruction, and the law that regulates this provides the basic principles of organized reconstruction,” said Prime Minister Andrej Plenković.
“The law is in accordance with all regulations and requirements in the field. Construction experts, architects, art historians, conservators, business groups and several chambers provided their input in drafting the law. This law is for the long term, we hope perhaps for the mid-term. It is our wish that with this law we achieve as wide a consensus as possible. We want it to be clear, transparent and implementable,” said the Prime Minister.
“A fund for reconstruction will be founded, which will be to implement reconstruction itself but also to gather funds for this generational action. The law foresees that the majority of expenses for reconstruction of private buildings will be paid by the state with 60%, local bodies of self-government with 20% and by owners themselves with 20%. As far as public buildings are concerned, their reconstruction will be fully financed through funds from the owners or founders,” said Minister of Physical Planning, Construction and State Property Darko Horvat.
Minister of Finance Zdravko Marić commented on the financing of the reconstruction.
“The main focus will be money from European funds and the European Union but also international financial institutions. That financial aspect must be put into a significant contribution to economic activities in Croatia,” said Marić.
Croatia is counting on significant assistance from the European Solidarity Fund.
“We have indications that already at the beginning of August a decision could be adopted regarding payment of advances amounting to 89 million Euros. The total amount from the European Solidarity Fund should be up to approximately 500 million euros. Estimated damages are around 11.5 billion Euros, 25 thousand buildings are damaged,” said Prime Minister Plenković.
It was also said that Croatia has the knowledge and experts for the most demanding types of work, such as the restoration of cultural monuments.
The law has been publicly debated for a month, and will pass through two readings in Parliament.