Croatia’s path towards adopting the Euro as the official currency is growing pace with the European Central bank revealing that they would carry out stress tests of five leading Croatian banks. This is basically the next step for the country’s aim to join the euro zone after the letter of intent to join the euro zone was sent from Zagreb to Brussels last months.
According to an article on Reuters the five Croatian banks that will be unfžder the magnifiying glass are Zagrebacka banka, Privredna banka Zagreb, Erste & Steiermärkische Bank, OTP banka Hrvatska and Hrvatska postanska banka. It is expected that the full results of these stress tests will be known by May of next year. Interestingly only one of these five banks is actually Croatian owned, Hrvatska postanska banka.
Reuters reported that “Croatia last month submitted a formal bid to join the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM-2), an early stage on the path to membership of the euro currency."
Croatia sent a letter of intent to join the euro zone, and therefore adopt the Euro as the official currency, on the 4th of July. And it seems that the public will not be asked their opinion in the form of a public referendum. The Prime Minister of Croatia, Andrej Plenkovic, has already made his feelings clear on this point when he stated that the public have already decided when they voted to join the European family back in 2012 when almost 67 percent voted to enter.
In fact, Croatia's EU membership does oblige it to eventually join the euro zone, as such the country plans to join the European Monetary System, the pathway to euro adoption. It is rumoured that the earliest date that Croatians could be paying in Euros rather than Kunas is 2023.