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Latvia responded to the tough crisis and deep recession with severe cuts and is an example of how severe measures can lead to economic growth, Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic said in Riga.
Latvia is a good example that the measures that are taken must be bold, that they must be carried out without delay, and it did this well because it had the courage, he said at a joint news conference with Latvian PM Valdis Dombrovskis.
Latvia was in a recession in 2009, after which the government imposed severe austerity measures which included budget and salary cuts and many layoffs in the state sector. Now it has the highest growth in the European Union -- 5.6% in 2012 -- and meets the eurozone criteria in terms of budgetary deficit, inflation and public debt. On January 1, ten years after joining the EU, it will introduce the euro, becoming the 18th member of the euro area.
That makes Latvia "cursed and blessed" at the same time, said Milanovic. Cursed because of the depth of the recession and crisis in 2009, and blessed because that forced it to make severe cuts which brought results, he explained.
Speaking at the "Riga Conference 2013" afterwards, he said Croatia's case was the opposite. It is blessed because it did not have such a deep crisis, and cursed because that did not force it to impose cuts as Latvia, he added.
This was Milanovic's first official visit abroad since Croatia joined the EU on July 1. Government
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Povezane vesti na srpskom
Συναφείς Ειδήσεις στα Ελληνικά