tihomir orešković.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Damir SENČAR /ds

Prime Minister Designate Tihomir Oreskovic presented the new government's members to the ruling coalition in parliament on Thursday, saying afterwards that the cabinet was a good mix of people from the private and public sectors and universities, and that he was confident that they would achieve good results.

Speaking to the press, he said the atmosphere at the session of the ruling coalition parliamentary groups was positive. "We got to know each other a bit, I submitted my biography and presented my vision. Every government member introduced themselves and we all became a little closer today."

Asked if it was correct that there was a hitch with a cooperation agreement which the Bridge and Croatian Democratic Union parties were to have signed today, Oreskovic said, "Tomorrow we are getting started and forming the government and we will communicate everything tomorrow. We are getting started tomorrow. Everything will be clear tomorrow."

Asked why there were too few women and too many people from the Metkovic area in the government to be presented in parliament tomorrow, Oreskovic said, "We have three women who are very successful and who will contribute a lot to this government. We didn't look at which region someone was from but searched for quality people and I think we chose the best among those who were part of this process. Quality is important for Croatia and not the region someone is from and I think we chose very good women."

Asked about the fact that the candidate for war veterans' minister, Mijo Crnoja, was proposing a register of traitors, Oreskovic said he had not heard that and that he would sit down and work out details with each of his ministers.

He also commented on criticism from the opposition that the financial sector was secure with the new government with him as prime minister and Zdravko Maric as finance minister. "The European Commission has underlined that the public debt is one of Croatia's biggest problems. The EC underlined in its report today that Croatia needs to solve this. We have to focus on the public debt, so it's good that a man has come who has experience in the public sector, worked in the government, and also has experience in the private sector and has contacts with agencies, which will come in handy in dealing with the deficit and debt problems."

Oreskovic confirmed that he vetoed some ministerial candidates but would not say whom. "It's not important how many vetoes there were. I can only say that the discussion was very healthy and this Tim's Team, as I said, can't wait to get to work, and I think that Croatia's citizens too can't wait for us to get to work."

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