Meeting Between Government and Striking Teachers' Unions Ends Inconclusively

By 30 November 2019

ZAGREB, November 30, 2019 - A meeting between Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and the striking education unions ended inconclusively on Friday evening after three hours of talks.

Emerging from the meeting, Science and Education Minister Blaženka Divjak said that talks would continue. "Consultations with the unions are continuing," she said.

Divjak said she was pushing for a quick solution that would end the strike already on Monday. "Everyone understands that we should really act quickly, so this dialogue will continue," she added.

The leader of the primary school teachers' union, Sanja Šprem, said that the strike would continue on Monday.

The unions refused the government's offer of a pay rise of 3+3+1 percent for next year, along with a base wage increase of 6.12 percent for all public service employees. The offer was rejected at a referendum by 95.26 percent of primary school teachers, 88.93 percent of secondary school teachers and 69 percent of employees in scientific and higher education institutions.

Teachers have been on strike for 35 days.

The head of the secondary school teachers' union, Branimir Mihalinec, said that they had also discussed job complexity indices. A 6.11 percent increase of job complexity indices is the unions' main demand.

Mihalinec said they had told the prime minister that they were available for talks over the weekend, and if a solution acceptable to the unions were to be found, the unions would end the strike immediately.

Responding to questions from the press, Mihalinec said that a ban on the strike had not been discussed.

More news about the strike can be found in the Politics section.