Croatia and entry into the eurozone, entry into Schengen, is it all going at an expected pace?
The Croatian National Bank and the Croatian Government have initiated a procedure for receiving Croatia in the eurozone without a comprehensive public debate that would involve all interested parties and without any detailed argumentation of potential benefits or damages from entering the eurozone, for Croatian companies and citizens. All communication so far maintained in the narrow circle of the proponents who wanted soon Eurozone entry, mostly associated with the Croatian National Bank, that has largely been recruited from foreign owned employees of commercial banks. Even if all short-term and long-term effects of Croatia's entry into the eurozone are positive, which unfortunately we did not have the opportunity to hear, it is a political decision that must be democratically based. Although we have agreed on the introduction of euro by entering the EU and I am not against entering the eurozone, this lack of transparency does not contribute to the legitimacy of the whole process. The establishment of the Schengen area, which enables EU citizens to move without border controls within the area, is one of the great achievements that reflects the highest values ??the EU strives for. Croatia is already a member of the Schengen Information System in which our border control performs an exceptional job and has the support for entering the Schengen area once it meets the established conditions. But the procedure implies that after getting the green light, it will join the unanimous decision of all members of the European Council, which I hope will happen soon. I still think that it is extremely important to continue the implementation of the Schengen acquis, which contributes to the strengthening of trust among members of the Schengen area. Last year's adoption of the Conclusions of the "Schengen - Achievement and Expectations" Conference sent a clear message that Schengen should not suffer because of the lack of common approach to addressing security and migration issues. The future of the European Union depends on the upgraded, efficient and expanded Schengen, not about raising the barriers between members.
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