The reconstruction of Zagreb and its surroundings from the earthquake is a unique opportunity to strengthen the domestic construction sector, it was pointed out on Wednesday at the virtual conference "Construction after the earthquake" organized by the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

Minister of Physical Planning, Construction and State Property Darko Horvat said that everything was being done to start the organized reconstruction as soon as possible, and that through a systematic approach in ten years it was possible to get a more beautiful and earthquake-safe Zagreb and surroundings. The spring of next year marks the beginning of the "full offensive" of their renewal.

He reported that the receipt of requests for reconstruction has begun, and a special department in the Ministry is available to citizens and others to help them with this.

Horvat reminded that the estimated cost of renovating the damaged buildings is around 42 billion kuna, while the current amount available for the reconstruction of Zagreb and its surroundings, according to him, reaches 12 billion kuna. These initial funds come, among other things, from the EU Solidarity Fund, and there is a World Bank loan of $ 200 million.

Soon, with the adoption of the statute and systematization of the Zagreb Reconstruction Fund, they will start equipping a team that will implement and control the implementation of the reconstruction in the field, announced Horvat, adding that "big eyes" are on the fund. a man who has experience running large systems. The man is Damir Vanđelić, who is currently acting director of the Fund.

Vandjelic told reporters that "there will be work for everyone" in the renewal. He said that the total revenue of the construction sector in Croatia last year amounted to 18 billion kuna, while annually for the reconstruction is planned between three and four billion kuna.

According to him, delays in public procurement can be avoided if the contracting authorities are those who are not its obligors, ie the property owners themselves.

"The building has already dragged Croatia out of the crisis"

The Dean of the Faculty of Civil Engineering in Zagreb, Stjepan Lakušić, considers the reconstruction of Zagreb and its surroundings a "mega project" for Croatia, and the biggest challenge is to ensure a sufficient number of teams for the implementation of projects and public procurement.

The question, he says, is whether we have enough construction companies in Croatia that can carry out reconstruction work.

The President of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, Luka Burilović, pointed out that the reconstruction from the earthquake was an opportunity for the reconstruction of Zagreb, for Croatian construction and manufacturers, but also for the economy in general. "The building has already dragged Croatia out of the crisis. And it can do it again," Burilovic said.

Therefore, he pointed out, quality and timely preparation is important, and it is important to know the criteria for withdrawing funds for reconstruction, how to get to the money faster and easier, as well as to detect problems in the field that could possibly disrupt these plans.

He cited unresolved ownership relations in buildings, unclear price formation and unclear renovation dynamics, as well as a possible shortage of materials in warehouses as problems.

"Croatia can and must benefit from this difficult situation. Construction connects the construction materials, cement, oil, metal and wood industries. We must re-employ our people, reduce the import of foreign workers and most importantly - give domestic builders and producers priority in reconstruction. ", said Burilović.

Catalog of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce with more than 4,000 Croatian products

Mirjana Čagalj, Vice President of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce for Construction and Transport, pointed out that the share of construction in Croatian GDP last year was 5.7 percent, while, according to HZMO data, 116.6 thousand insured persons were registered in construction and construction at the end of last year. .

Also, this year, in which there is a strong decline in GDP, construction is one of the few activities that is recording growth, said Čagalj and explained that such trends are strongly influenced by major investment projects, the use of EU funds, and partly from the elimination of the consequences of the earthquake in Zagreb.

She argued that earthquake reconstruction was a unique opportunity to strengthen the domestic construction sector. She pointed out that the Croatian Chamber of Commerce has been promoting the purchase and installation of Croatian products for years, with the short-term goal of incorporating Croatian products during the renovation, but also to be a kind of beginning of long-term strengthening of Croatian construction competitiveness.

The catalog of Croatian products of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, in which more than four thousand top products are available, can certainly help that, a good part of which is related to construction and equipping, said Čagalj.

In a statement to the press, Čagalj also emphasized public procurement procedures as a problem that could appear in the reconstruction. Namely, as she explained, in public procurement, companies that cannot perform the works for which they are competing should be prevented from complicating and slowing down procedures with complaints and other moves.

According to her, banks should provide favorable loans for the purchase of construction materials.

The President of the Management Board of Tehnika, Zlatko Sirovec, expects professional, rational, innovative and quality renovation, and he is most concerned about the prices of renovation that in his opinion, they could be high, among other things due to difficult access to construction sites and manual transport.

He expects the reconstruction to gain momentum from the middle of next year, but fears that there will not be enough workers, so they will have to be "imported".

He also considers public procurement to be a problem. “When I see and read some public tenders, I know who they were written for,” he said.

Source: Jutarnji list