The total debt of counties, cities and municipalities more than doubled from 2002 to 2014, growing from HRK 2 billion in 2002 to HRK 4.5 billion in 2014, mostly due to loans, the Institute of Public Finance (IJF) says in a study.

In its latest newsletter the IJF underscores that the share of securities in the debt structure was considerably smaller than that of loans, accounting for HRK 200 million or 4% of the total direct debt in 2014.

Direct debt comprises all budget deficits in the current and earlier periods financed by short-term and long-term loans or securities. In addition to direct debt there is also potential debt that includes guarantees by counties, cities and municipalities issued to their public companies and institutions, IJF said.

The IJF underscored that the per-capita direct debt of counties, cities and municipalities more than doubled in the 2002-2014 period, increasing from HRK 480 to about HRK 1,000.

The study further pointed out that as much as 80% of the total debt of all counties (around HRK 570 million) related to only 10 of the 20 counties, and only one, namely Dubrovnik-Neretva County, had no direct debt in 2014.

The situation with cities is similar: 80% of the direct debt of all cities, with the exception of the City of Zagreb (about HRK 1.5 billion), relates to just 29 of 127 cities. Although the direct debt of the City of Zagreb is equal to that of the 29 cities combined, it is not significant given its revenue, the authors of the study said.

It is interesting to note that 22 cities have no direct debt at all or if they do it is less than HRK 100,000.

Data for the municipalities shows that about half of their direct debt (HRK 200 million) can be attributed to just 20 of the 428 municipalities and that around 60% of municipalities have no direct debt.

 

(EUR 1 = HRK 7.64)

Related stories

Croatia's public debt reaches 87% of GDP in July

Public debt totals EUR 38.7b at end of Feb

Bad loans account for 16.56 pct of lending in 2015

Bank lending down 0.6% y-o-y

HRK 5 million spent on drugs in Croatia in 2014

Latest news

Syrian opposition rules out future role for President al-Assad

The Syrian opposition said Friday it would not accept any role for President Bashar al-Assad in the future of the war-torn country, reacting to a recent US shift saying that removing al-Assad is no longer a priority for Washington.

Russian Army integrates breakaway forces of Georgian province

Parts of the small fighting forces of the Georgian breakaway province of South Ossetia have been placed under Russian military control, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Friday.

Czech Republic's Pilsner Urquell beer is now Japanese

Japanese brewing company Asahi completed its takeover of the Czech brewery Pilsner Urquell on Friday, Asahi said in a statement.

Judge approves 25-million-dollar settlement of Trump University case

A US district judge on Friday approved a 25-million-dollar settlement of lawsuits and state fraud allegations against Trump University, the US president's now-defunct business venture.

Former Thai premier Thaksin to junta on reconciliation: 'Cut me out'

Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra on Friday announced that he is not interested in the junta-led reconciliation process, three days after the junta handed him a half-a-billion-dollar tax bill for his past business deal.

Dalic: We welcome possible deal between Agrokor and banks

The government welcomes the possibility of an agreement being concluded between the Agrokor food company and creditor banks, and the bill on vitally important companies is not a fallback plan but the result of the government's care for the overall economic and financial stability of Croatia, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy Martina Dalic told a press conference in Zagreb on Friday.

Croatia, China sign action plan for cooperation in agriculture

The Croatian and Chinese ministries of agriculture on Friday signed an action plan for cooperation in the field of agriculture for the period 2017-2018, the Croatian ministry said in a statement.

ZSE indices up, Agrokor shares in focus of investor interest

The Zagreb Stock Exchange (ZSE) indices on Friday rose by more than 1.8%, with stocks of the Agrokor food and retail concern being in the focus of investor interest again.

Berlin police defend handling of Berlin market attacker

Berlin police defended themselves on Friday against accusations that they stopped surveillance on Berlin Christmas market attacker despite knowing in June 2016 he was dangerous.

Croatia, creditors tailor emergency measures to save tottering giant

Croatia's tottering retail and food giant Agrokor reached an agreement with its creditors, putting its debts standby and allowing it to continue working during emergency restructuring, the Croatian branch of Austria's Erste Bank said Friday.

Agrokor's creditors say standstill agreement to go into force today

A standstill agreement regarding the Agrokor concern's existing financial obligations to banks will take effect on Friday, additional capital will be injected into the concern in the coming days and the concern will be actively restructured, which includes a change of its management, it was said on Friday after a meeting between Agrokor's suppliers and creditor banks.

Palestinians, UN slam Israel's new settlement plan

Palestinians, Israeli activists and the UN lambasted the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday, a day after it gave the go-ahead for the first new West Bank settlement in a quarter of a century.

South Sudan rebels release three abducted foreign oil workers

South Sudanese rebels have released three foreign engineers they abducted in early March in the oil-rich Upper Nile region, Foreign Affairs Ministry official Mawein Makol Arik said on Friday.

Turkish opposition: Imprisoned party chief has gone on hunger strike

The head of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition party has launched a hunger strike from prison.

European leagues threaten Champions League schedule clashes

The European Professional Football Leagues (EPFL) on Friday threatened schedule clashes on Champions League matchdays in an ongoing dispute with the governing body UEFA.

Danish court revokes citizenship of IS volunteer

A Danish appellate court on Friday stripped a man of his Danish citizenship for volunteering to fight for the extremist Islamic State in Syria.

Banks and Agrokor agree on key elements of standstill agreement

Member banks of the coordinating committee of financial creditors and representatives of the Agrokor food company have in principle agreed on key elements of a standstill agreement, which is expected to be signed later today, announcing changes in the company's management team, Erste Bank said in a statement on Friday afternoon.

Syrian man on trial in Sweden; mosque attack labelled terrorism

A Syrian man went on trial Friday in the southern Swedish city of Malmo, charged with terrorism and arson after an attack last year on a building used as an assembly hall by Shiite Muslims.