zdravko marić.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Damir SENČAR /ds

The Croatian government intends to adopt a budget for this year on March 10 and plans to reduce the budget deficit to 3% of GDP, Finance Minister Zdravko Maric said in Brussels on Friday.

Maric today participated for the first time in a meeting of EU finance ministers and met with Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici.

"I told Commissioner Moscovici that in the next two weeks we will have an outline of the budget within fiscal and economic policy guidelines. The government plans to adopt the budget on March 10, but we did not discuss any details," Maric said.

In its winter forecast the European Commission estimated that Croatia's budget deficit would be 3.9% of GDP, but Maric said the government planned to reduce the deficit more.

"We definitely intend to have a lower deficit than that forecast by the EC. Our goal is to reach 3% of GDP and the exact figure will be known when we have the budget. We will surely take certain measures to achieve that goal," said Maric.

He added that Commissioner Moscovici was satisfied with what he heard at the meeting with him. "The Commissioner expressed support for certain measures of a structural nature to be taken in relation to the budget and the entire economy. I think that we have a very good message from him, the Commission is satisfied and expects the measures discussed to be implemented," said Maric.

He added that he planned to hold another round of talks with government ministers before the budget was adopted.

The government's economic policy has two main goals - economic growth and putting public finance in order, he said.

Related stories

FinMin says new gov't will intensify growth

Oreskovic: Budget guidelines are realistic

FinMin says gov't won't hesistate and delay reforms

Proposed 2016 budget not reform-oriented, analysts say

PM says expects positive opinion from EC

Latest news

Deloitte: Growing optimism among CFOs

Chief financial officers (CFOs) in Croatia are more optimistic about growth and financial prospects in 2017 than they were last year, with most of them expecting increases in their company's revenue, a survey shows.

Russian agents main suspects for attempted coup in Montenegro

Russian citizens Eduard Shumakov and Vladimir Popoc, suspected of organising terrorist activities in Montenegro and forming a criminal organisation, are agents of Russia's Main Intelligence Agency (GRU), British, U.S. and other intelligence agencies confirmed, the Podgorica-based media reported on Sunday.

Six injured, 96 detained in Berlin fan clashes

Six people were treated in hospital and 96 detained in clashes in Berlin between fans of Hertha Berlin and Eintracht Frankfurt, police said Sunday.

Croatian government condemns extremism

The Croatian government on Sunday condemned all forms of extremism and acts of provocative nature aimed against the Serb minority in Vukovar as well as the rally organised by the Autochthonous Croatian Party of Rights (A-HSP) in Zagreb on Friday.

Approx. 7,500 migrants prevented from illegally entering Serbia in past 8 months

In the past several months, the authorities have prevented the illegal entry of approximately 7,500 migrants on Serbian soil. Serbian Interior Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic said Sunday.

Merkel's conservatives and Schulz's centre-left draw even in survey

Voter support for the German centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) is on par with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives, a survey published Sunday showed.

Police arrest A-HSP party chief at rally in Zagreb

Police arrested Autochthonous Croatian Party of Rights (A-HSP) chief Drazen Keleminac for disturbing the peace at a public rally organised by the A-HSP in Zagreb on Sunday.

Kidnapped German archaeologists freed in Nigeria

Two German archaeologists who were kidnapped in northern Nigeria have been released, police said Sunday.

Turkey has built 290 kilometres of wall on border with Syria

Turkey has erected 290 kilometres of a planned 511-kilometre wall along its border with Syria, local media reported Sunday, citing the head of the building authority in charge of the project.

Syrian forces close in on city held by Turkish-backed rebels

Syrian government forces on Sunday seized a town from the Islamic State extremist militia near the northern city of al-Bab already under the control of Turkish-backed rebels, Syrian state media and monitors reported.

Egypt says at least 118 Christian families escape Sinai attacks

At least 90 families reached Egypt's Ismailiya governorate, after escaping targeted killings by a local Islamic State militia in northern Sinai in recent days, an official at the Coptic Orthodox Church said Sunday.

40,000 Croats suffer from anorexia and bulimia

More than 40,000 Croatians, mostly girls and young women aged between 12 and 30, suffer from anorexia, bulimia or some other eating disorder and that number is growing each year, experts at the centre for eating disorders BEA have reported.