MEPs on Tuesday gave a favourable opinion to Croatia’s bid to become the newest member of the eurozone from the 1st January 2023.
Parliament, by 539 votes in favour, 45 votes against and 48 abstentions, adopted the report of Siegfried Mureșan (EPP, RO) stating Croatia fulfils all the criteria for adopting the euro on 1st January 2023.
The report notes that, despite the evaluation of Croatia’s readiness taking place against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, high inflation, and Russia’s war against Ukraine, Croatia continues to be ready to adopt the euro.
MEPs also state that Croatia already has a higher level of price convergence with the eurozone compared to other member states on their adoption of the euro. Nonetheless, Parliament expects sustained efforts from the Croatian government to ensure further price convergence and that the introduction of the euro does not lead to artificial price increases.
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The rapporteur Siegfried Mureșan (EPP, RO), said:
“The reforms undertaken by the Croatian Government in the last years have strengthened the economy and paved the way for Croatia joining the common currency. It is clear that becoming a member of the euro is the right decision for the country, its businesses and citizens, as well as various sectors of its economy, such as tourism.
Croatia becoming the 20th member of the euro area is good for the European Union as well: it shows the viability and trust in our common currency”.
The Chair of the EP’s euro working group, Margarida Marques (S&D, PT), said:
Croatia’s accession to the single currency in 2023 is the first significant European integration process since Brexit and marks a further enlargement of the euro in the Balkans. When European values are being challenged at our borders, this is a clear sign of unity, further integration and a contribution to the strength of the euro as a global currency.
The adoption of the euro by Croatia shows that the single currency is a stimulating and solid project that guarantees greater security and stability for citizens.
Parliament’s opinion will be forwarded to Eurozone member states who are responsible for giving the final clearance for Croatia to adopt the euro.