Complete speech of the President of CEA, Mrs. Gordana Deranja


The complete speech of the President of CEA, Mrs. Gordana Deranje, given below:

"Ladies and gentleman,
respected representatives of political parties and coalitions, respected entrepreneurs and employers, distinguished guests,
I am glad that today's and previous discussions organized by the CEA and Hanza media aroused great interest. This proves that we managed to succeed in shifting the focus of the election campaign to real issues, and more importantly - to search for the right answers.
In the last campaign, much was said about the reforms, but unfortunately after the campaign we didn't see any results. In this campaign reforms have fallen into the background, but we are rightly worried about what will happen after the elections when they should be implemented. In this campaign again we heard a lot of brave and grandiose promises. But few plausible explanations that give assurance that are well thought, realistic and achievable.
It seems to me as if none of our political options are aware enough of the truth about the world we live in today. And we live in a globalized world that changes quickly. In a world that is literally changing every day. Therefore, I will repeat what I said at our Entrepreneurs' Day - only individuals, the organizations, companies and countries that themselves change and adapt to this new world today can be successful. All the others are losers.
Croatia is unfortunately among them. Although we in the CEA like many many other groups, call for substantial and deep changes, the political elite and certain interest groups which correspond to this situation, are still reserved to them.
Therefore, Croatia today is at the bottom of the European Union. Numerous countries that are still in transition, that once could envy us, are now significantly better, more successful and far ahead of us.
I know that today both left and right parties will try to take the credit for GDP growth. However, dear politicians, the truth is that you had very little to do with it. The only ones you can really give the credit for this good trend are entrepreneurs, employers and employees in the private sector.
We have, pressed by crisis, rolled up our sleeves and gritted our teeth. So we together, employers and workers, spent our reforms. We reduced the number of people, we reduced the salaries, we turned literally - as they say -every stone in order to find space and opportunities to reduce costs, to increase productivity. We had to change and start working in a different way. And it was in a lot of cases difficult and painful.
And if the state and the public sector did a third of what we did, we would grow more and get out of this crisis faster. And our entrepreneurs and citizens would have had a better education, better health, lower, or more efficient and fully digitalized public administration, faster and more reliable justice system.
But it's funny how exhausting the stories of reforms are, because we're always looking for reasons why they should not be implemented right away. As I said at the beginning, the world is changing every day and we have to constantly change and adapt if we are to be successful. We who work in companies know this very well.
Therefore, what we expect and what we ask of these elections - that the politicans finally realize in what times we live in, and that they're the ones who have the responsibility to Croatia that it becomes a country where people can live decently and where there is future for their children.
This behavior can not be reached by populism and preservation of the current situation, it can be reached only by serious and hard work, only knowledge and experience, will and courage to finally initiate processes of necessary changes.
The real question is which of our political options are truly ready for this and have such people?
The answer to this question we asked on our discussions, and we are looking for him today.
Finally, I will take this opportunity to thank the representatives of the two strongest political options that are with us today for their willingness to confront the arguments.
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