Croat, Slovene Experts Offer Solution on NLB Feud, Jutarnji Says

Croatian and Slovenian experts proposed a solution to a banking dispute stemming from the breakup of Yugoslavia and threatening to delay Croatia’s planned July 2013 European Union entry, Jutarnji List reported, citing people close to the negotiations.

Slovenia should return to Croatia 278.7 million euros ($362 million) over the next 30 years, while Croatia will not seek interest rates dating from the early 1990s, Jutarnji said. Both governments are considering the proposal, according to the Zagreb-based newspaper.

Croatia has barred Nova Ljubljanska Banka d.d., Slovenia’s largest bank, from operating in Croatia until the issue is settled over money owed to Croat savers from the bank’s Yugoslav predecessor. Croatia took over the debt from about 300,000 former savers from Croatia and had paid them out in the 1990s. Slovenia said in October it will ratify Croatia’s EU membership only after the dispute is resolved.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jasmina Kuzmanovic in Zagreb at jkuzmanovic@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at jagomez@bloomberg.net

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