Croatia adopts law to protect from big company failures

Croatia's parliament has adopted an emergency law to protect the economy from large company failures after the country's biggest private-owned firm accumulated huge debts.

Agrokor, the largest private retailer and food producer in the Balkans, has struggled to pay suppliers and creditors after building up $6.5 billion (6 billion euros) in debt, or six times its equity.

The emergency law allows the state to appoint an executive to lead a restructuring process if debtors and creditors demand it.

Agrokor has reached a deal with its lenders, including Russia's Sberbank and VTB banks, to get an unspecified cash injection and temporary freeze on debt repayments. A restructuring expert was appointed to try to rescue the company.

The vote in parliament was 83 for the emergency law, 46 against and two abstentions.