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Croatia mulls launching Eurozone accession process - econ min

Author Maja Garaca
Croatia mulls launching Eurozone accession process - econ min License: Creative Commons CC0

ZAGREB (Croatia), October 12 (SeeNews) - Croatia's government and central bank estimate that now is a good time to initiate the process of the country's accession to the Eurozone, deputy prime minister and economy minister, Martina Dalic, said.

"Entering the Eurozone is an obligation we took up when joining the EU [...] Croatia's financial structure makes it a perfect candidate", Dalic said during a radio show aired by national public broadcaster HRT on Wednesday.

"Our positive economic trends, including a deficit reduction, a drop in interest rates, low inflation, will enable us to fulfil most of the criteria at this point in time," Dalic noted, adding that entering the Eurozone is a medium-term goal that can not be attained overnight.

Croatia's central bank has already conducted an analysis of the costs and benefits of joining the Eurozone, Dalic said, and announced that a public debate on this matter will be launched by the end of the month.

Last month, prime minister Andrej Plenkovic said Croatia expects to become part of the EU's Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM II) by 2020 and join the euro area a few years later.

In ERM II, the so-called euro's waiting room, the exchange rate of a non-euro area member state is fixed against the euro and is only allowed to fluctuate within set limits. A country must participate in the mechanism without severe tensions for at least two years before it can qualify to adopt the euro.

Croatia joined the European Union in 2013.