Ahead of today's vote on expenditure related to the accession of Croatia to the EU, new Croatian GUE/NGL MEP Nikola Vuljanić has commented:
"We welcome finally the approval of this amending EU 2013 budget. In Croatia the economy is on the edge: 22% of Croatian people are unemployed and among young people this figure is 50%. These people have been waiting for good news from Europe and today if this budget is voted through we can finally send them some.
"There has been disappointment that Croatia is the first acceding member state to join the European Union not to receive the appropriate funds. Croatians have had high expectations about EU membership, and I hope they won't be let down and that Croatia will be on an equal footing with the other member states."
GUE/NGL President Gabi Zimmer said: "The GUE/NGL warmly welcomes Croatia and our new Croatian Member, we will all benefit from the accession of Croatia. The most important thing now is to speed up the integration of Croatia, namely by ensuring that finally people can benefit from all EU programmes, to alleviate the situation of thousands of unemployed and in particular young people."
GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group