18:58 / 31.12.2021.

Author: Katja Miličić

Croatia has cause for optimism despite Covid and other challenges, PM says in New Year's message

Prime Minister Andrej Plenković

Prime Minister Andrej Plenković

Foto: Zeljko Hladika / PIXSELL

Croatians braved another year of the coronavirus pandemic in 2021 and dealt with the consequences of the devastating earthquakes of 2020 but despite all of the challenges the country faces, there is reason to believe the future is bright, said Prime Minister Andrej Plenković in a New Year message issued on Friday.

“And as if that wasn't enough, Omicron has recently emerged, a new, much more contagious variant of the coronavirus that is spreading like wildfire. Defending ourselves from all these plagues requires responsibility and social solidarity,” the PM said.

Plenković thanked health professionals who had made an “immeasurable contribution” to protecting the lives of fellow citizens.

“We can all contribute to this joint effort by adhering to epidemiological measures and getting vaccinations and boosters.”

The Prime Minister said his government was working on speeding up the process of rebuilding what was lost and damaged in the earthquakes in Banovina and Zagreb, a process that has been painfully slow for which his government has been widely criticized.

“That is why we are doing everything we can to speed up the process so that everyone can return to their homes and homes. We also want the reconstruction to be an opportunity for the economic development of the hard-hit Banovina,” the PM said.

Despite these challenges, Pleknović says Croatia has reason to be optimistic.

“We expect economic growth of more than 9% thanks to the synergy of our measures and the resilience of the Croatian economy. In 2022, we will continue with strong economic development, job creation and reforms, as well as demographic revitalization measures, which are crucial for Croatia’s future. We are about to achieve two strategic goals: joining the Schengen Area and the Eurozone,” he said.

The PM also called for solidarity, unity, and accountability in fighting the pandemic.

“With this conviction, on behalf of the Government and personally, I wish everyone health, peace and success in the new 2022 year!” he said in closing.

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