Croatia’s Prime Minister Andrej Plenković announced his country will work “intensively” to introduce the euro currency.

Addressing a conference about Croatia’s strategy for the introduction for the EU’s single currency, he said he hopes Croatia will join the Eurozone under his mandate as prime minister.

According to European Western Balkans online, however, many economists claim Croatia remains far away from meeting the required pre-conditions.

One example is the convergence criteria. According to the Maastricht Treaty, public debt cannot surpass 60% of GDP. It does not strictly mean the limit of 60% of GDP, but the share of debt in GDP has to show stable and long-term reduction tendency.

Officials from the Croatian National Bank stressed there is no special date until which Croatia must become a Eurozone member

The public discussion on the costs and the benefits of replacing the Croatian kuna with the euro is slated to begin this autumn, reported European Western Balkans.

According to Dejan Rebernik from the Croatian National Bank, joining the Eurozone requires a country to achieve the defined criteria in terms of inflation, interest rates, fiscal deficit and public debt. After that, a country becomes a part of the Exchange Rate Mechanism of the EU where it has to spend at least two years.