Monday, 22 May 2023

European Commission: Croatian Model of Fact-Checking Relevant to All EU

May 22, 2023 - The representative office of the European Commission in Croatia evaluates the Croatian model of establishing a system for checking the accuracy of the information in the public space and a network of fact-checkers relevant to every EU country, noting that it is the only such project financed from the Next Generation EU instrument.

As part of the project for the establishment of information accuracy checks, public tenders were completed at the beginning of May, calling for associations and scientific and educational institutions interested in fact-checking, as well as appraisers of applications for the part of the project for which almost four million non-reimbursable euros were allocated, writes Poslovni.

Deputy head of the EC Representation and head of the media department, Andrea Čović Vidović, in an interview for Hina, pointed out that the European Commission welcomes this initiative of the Ministry of Culture and Media and the Agency for Electronic Media (AEM).

"As far as we know, it is the only such project in the European Union financed from the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, i.e., the Next Generation EU instrument. The project's goals align with what the European Commission insists on when it comes to media and social media, and they are certainly relevant for every member state", said Čović Vidović.

She emphasized that the European Commission welcomes the project's focus on combating misinformation and fake news in the public space, safety when consuming media content, and strengthening credible media coverage and media literacy.

Strengthening the media's resistance to misinformation

In addition, as stated in the public tender, the idea is to strengthen the capacities and competencies of existing information checkers through the project, establish new independent fact-checkers, and the system and procedure of fact-checking in media newsrooms to make the media resistant to misinformation.

"The dimension of the tender, which refers to the encouragement and creation of media content on the topic of fighting against disinformation, is important in terms of communication and certainly commendable," she said.

She added that on behalf of the European Commission, she cannot comment on the specific project dynamics of the aforementioned public tender to establish a national network of fact-checkers. On the other hand, she can welcome the initiative again because it reflects the Commission's efforts to strengthen the member states in their readiness to fight against foreign interference and the fight against hybrid threats.

"The European Commission is committed to protecting societies, citizens, and freedoms from hybrid threats, including misinformation. We want to encourage the member states to detect, prevent and suppress all such attacks while at the same time strengthening their resistance to these threats. At the level of the European Union, in this context, we must not allow nothing to be done about misinformation," she stressed.

She added that the most active fight against fake news and misinformation is in the digital dimension by creating accurate and precise informative content.

Demystify false and offer accurate information

"It is precisely on the 'socials' that we have a unique opportunity for that and the best reach. Through communication on social networks, we often encounter user comments in which unverified misinformation is presented, and quite often, they spread fake news. In these cases, our task is the so-called debunking - to demystify fakes and offer accurate and true information to those users and everyone who sees user comments," she added.

As part of this, she also announced a workshop on June 15 at the House of Europe in Zagreb, where the importance of digital literacy in the fight against fake news and misinformation will be discussed. The target group is media representatives who work on the social networks of media newsrooms, and the goal is to start a conversation about social responsibility when it comes to this topic, especially about protecting the young audience from manipulation of information, she emphasized.

Čović Vidović also referred to the recent speech of EC Vice-President Vera Jourova, who expressed her doubt that numerous lawsuits against media and journalists in Croatia can be subsumed under strategic lawsuits directed against public participation (SLAPP lawsuits).

"No member state is immune to strategic lawsuits against public participation. A more detailed report on the state of the media in the member states for 2023 will be presented as part of the Commission's regular report on the rule of law, published halfway through the year. The report will provide information on the current estimated state of SLAPP lawsuits in all member states, including Croatia," said Čović Vidović.

The EU has a lot of work to do in precisely defining SLAPP

She also assessed that the European Union still has a lot of work to do in precisely defining SLAPP. She reminds that through the proposal of the SLAPP directive presented by the EC last year, the training of legal experts and potential defendants in strategic lawsuits against public participation is particularly emphasized to improve the knowledge necessary for successful participation in such court proceedings. She concluded that the European network for judicial training should ensure the coordination and dissemination of information in all member states.

On the eve of the announced adoption of the European Act on Freedom of the Media, she referred to the provisions that could improve the media scene in Croatia.

"The European Act on Media Freedom, whose proposal was presented by the European Commission in September 2022, includes rules for protecting media pluralism and independence in the European Union. It includes safeguards against political interference in editorial decisions and oversight, and at its core is the independence and stable financing of public media, as well as transparency of media ownership and distribution of state advertising. It establishes measures to protect the independence of editors and reveal conflicts of interest".

She added that this act would also solve the issue of media concentration and establish a new independent European Committee for Media Services composed of national media bodies and ensure that public and private media can more easily operate across borders in the EU internal market without undue pressure and taking into account the digital transformation of the media space.

"All these are important issues for every member state of the Union, including Croatia. It is now up to the European Parliament and the member states to discuss the Commission's proposal within the framework of the regular legislative procedure. After its adoption, this regulation will be directly applied throughout the European Union, including in Croatia," she concluded.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Monday, 22 May 2023

Move Over Winter, Croatian Summer is at the Doorstep

May 22, 2023 - If you haven't yet, now you can really put away all your winter jackets and take out the short sleeves and flip-flops. The long-awaited Croatian summer has arrived.

Temperatures go up to 27

According to DHMZ, as reported by Index, it is expected to be mostly sunny today in the interior with the development of clouds during the day, so local afternoon showers and thunderstorms are possible, especially in the interior of Dalmatia and the far north. The wind on land will be weak to moderate northeast and east, on the Adriatic gale and northwest. Gale at the foot of Velebit will still be strong in the morning.

The highest daily air temperature will be between 23 and 28 °C, writes DHMZ.

Detailed forecast by region

Eastern Croatia

Mostly sunny. In the afternoon, locally moderate cloud development with a slight chance of a few showers. Wind weak to moderate northeast and east. The highest daily air temperature from 23 to 26 °C.

Central Croatia

Mostly sunny, with the development of clouds during the day and a few showers and thunderstorms possible in the afternoon. A weak and moderate northeasterly wind will blow. The highest daily air temperature from 23 to 26 °C.

Gorski kotar and Lika

Predominantly and partly sunny, and with the increased development of clouds, showers, and thunderstorms are possible locally. Short-term fog in the valleys in the morning. The wind will be weak and moderate from the northeast. The highest daily air temperature from 20 to 23 °C.


Mostly sunny with mostly low clouds, and in the afternoon, with local development of clouds, short-term rain or a few thundershowers are possible in places, mainly in the interior of Istria. There will be a weak to moderate, sometimes stronger gale, and a weak to moderate north-westerly wind in the afternoon. The sea will be calm, in places moderately wavy. The highest daily air temperature will be between 22 and 26 °C.

Northern Adriatic

Mostly sunny, in the interior of Istria, occasionally with moderate cloud cover. A moderate to strong gale with storm gusts will blow at the foot of Velebit. The highest daily air temperature is from 23 to 26 °C.


Mostly sunny, towards the middle of the day, with locally stronger cloud development and afternoon showers with thunder. There will be a weak to moderate northwesterly wind and gale. The highest daily air temperature from 24 to 26 °C.

A little warmer tomorrow

Sunny with weak and moderate daytime cloud development, and mainly in Dalmatia and its interior, an occasional afternoon shower is possible. Cloudy with rain is likely in the northwestern regions on Wednesday night. Wind mostly weak of variable directions. The lowest morning air temperature is from 9 to 14, along the coast, from 14 to 18, and the highest daily temperature from 23 to 28 °C.

At the end of the week, the temperature could drop to 23, 24 degrees.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Monday, 22 May 2023

Dutch Plane Crashes in Croatia Killing Three, Site Inspection Now Over

May 22, 2023 - A Dutch plane crashed over the weekend at Mala Kapela in Croatia, and it seems that all the passengers were killed. There were most likely three passengers, which is how many the flight plan stated. This was confirmed by an eyewitness at the crash site of the Cirrus 20 plane conducted by the Karlovac police and the chief aviation investigator.

As the DORH reported, "an investigation and determination of all the circumstances of the crash of the Cirrus 20 aircraft is ongoing in the wooded part of Mala Kapela in the area of the town of Ogulin", writes Index.

"A fire broke out on the plane"

Chief aviation inspector Danko Petrin told Hina from the accident site that all the passengers on the Dutch plane died and that the plane was a badly damaged wreck that, in addition to mechanical damage, was also destroyed by fire.

He added that the County State Attorney's Office is conducting an on-site investigation, which will be followed by data collection.

"We need to get air traffic control data, the communication they had with the pilot, radar, and other data, and then we will get a complete picture and, hopefully, an answer to the question of what and why it happened," said Petrin.

The cause of the crash has not yet been confirmed

He dismissed as speculation the claim that the cause of the plane crash was bad weather because they "are guided only by facts, and bad weather conditions do not automatically mean that they are the cause of the plane crash."

Petrin also confirmed that it was a Dutch plane in which, according to the flight plan, there were three passengers from the Netherlands, and whether this is so and who the passengers are will be determined by the autopsy, which should also provide answers about the exact time of the crash and the cause of death.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Sunday, 21 May 2023

'Quietest Rally in the World' Nikola Tesla EV Kicks Off in Istria

May 21, 2023 - A decade after its first edition, one of the best promotional events in Croatia kicks off in Istria - Nikola Tesla EV Rally 2023. 

If I was looking for a symbol to promote the very best image of Croatia, I don't think I could come up with something better than the Nikola Tesla EV Rally, an annual event which celebrated 10 years when it kicked off in Rovinj yesterday. 

This year's event, the longest ever at 10 days, will take in the delights of Istria, the Kvarner and Dalmatian coasts, in a 5-star tour of the very best that Croatian has to offer. The participants, predominantly Tesla drivers from all over the world, congregate each year to sample the best of Croatian luxury accommodation and gourmet experiences, interspersed with tourism sightseeing and speed tests at Vrsar Airport. 

Imagine the symbolism. In modern Croatian, the birthplace of Nikola Tesla in Smiljan, the electric ca revolution is celebrated, while showcasing the finest nature, lifestyle, gastronomy and authentic experiences. I can think of no finer event to present the best of Croatia.

It is an event that has seen the likes of Elon Musk's mother, Maye Musk, take part (can you imagine the mother of Mr Modern Telsa driving a Tesla around the land of the birthplace of Nikola Tesla - and almost nobody noticed...), as well as the owner of the first-ever Rimac Concept_One driving his $1 million car all over Croatia on the rally route. 


This year's event kicked off as usual in Istria, with the Teslas, accompanied by an electric vehicle from the local administration in Fazana, lining up on the waterfront to be inspected by curious passers-by, before heading off inland for Day 1 of the driving in the rally. 

Beautiful Rovinj was a stunning setting, as you can see from the drone sho above, only to be followed by the first stop.  


Vodnjan and its timeless and narrow streets proved to be an excellent first stop, accompanies by a walking tour of the town, which included a visit to the famous mummies in a nearby church.  

Vodnjan from the air - it has recently become famous for something else - home to the first-ever Croatian unicorn, the IT company, Infobip. 

One of the things I like most about the rally (I have attended parts of it 3-4 times over the las few years), is how organisers Tina and Igor Kolovat manage each year to bring some of the best culinary experiences into the program, and there is always a surprise, even for those of us who know Croatia quite well. And that surprise on the first day was undoubtedly Prsutana Bursic in Vodnjan.  


I have visited many prsut producers during my time in Croatia, but none quite like this one. Apart from the delicious (and smokeless - only the wind is used in the production) prsut, I had never been to a prsut producer who has invested so much into make the prsut tasting experience a family occasion. Kids play areas! Awesome stuff. 

But not as awesome as this gem of a find below, and something which I have never come across before.  


Pancetta chips. This was pork scratchings on steroids, absolutely stunning, and the perfect snack with a cold beer. It is the brainchild of the wife of the producer, who came up with it during lockdown. Just one of a range of excellent products on offer. Definitely a hidden gem worth checking out next time you are in Istria.  


From there, to more familiar territory and the Bruno Trapan wine and lunch experience. Trapan is one of Istria's best-known and most innovative winemakers, and his Trapan Station is an excellent culinary experience and introduction to the world of Istrian gastronomy.  While Mrs Trapan toiled away in the kitchen to produce an excellent lunch for the guests, Bruno was front of house, making sure everything worked like clockwork, while simultaneously presenting six of his outstanding wines. A fine example of a family business with a passion for excellence creating a stunning first impression to the international arrivals. 


Having been seduced by the prsut, wine and food of Istria, next stop on the rally was to one of my favourite stories in all Croatia, and arguably the leading olive oil producer in the country.  In 1997, a teenage boy planted 100 olive trees in memory of his late father and grandfather. His elder brother supported him in his project. Today, Chiavalon olive oil is acclaimed as one of the best in the world. 

Elder brother Tedi Chiavalon was on hand to welcome the rally participants to the new Chaivalon facility just outside Vodnjan. His presentation about extra virgin olive oil was one of the most educational gourmet presentations I have heard in Croatia, giving a step by step guide about how to spot the real and the fake extra virgin olive oil. It was also a presentation with not a hint of a sales pitch, but so impressed was his audience, that the Chiavalon shop till was ringing for some time as participants lined up to get their slice of Istrian liquid gold. 


A superb opening day, rounded off with dinner at Hotel Eden in Rovinj, and then to bed in preparation for Day 2 - highlights of which include visits to Groznjan and Buzet, as well as speed racing of Teslas at the private Vrsar Airport. After that, the rally will head south to Split, while also visiting Peljesac, the Imotski Lakes, Sibenik, Krka National Park, Crikvenica and Trogir. You can see the itinerary here, and follow the rally on Facebook.  

Sunday, 21 May 2023

Looking for a Job in Croatia? This Week's Top 10 from (May 21, 2023)

May 21, 2023 - Looking for a job in Croatia? A new weekly feature on TCN, in partnership with leading job site agency,, who present a selection of weekly job listings.

How hard is it to find a job in Croatia, and what is on offer?

We spoke to Ines Bokan, director of leading jobs site, who kindly took the time for this excellent interview overview.  

This week's top 10 jobs from

Jet Limited is hiring Resort Customer Helper (m/f). The location of work is Dubrovnik. The employer is offering fully paid training, uniform and IT equipment, and a competitive salary. You can apply until 17.06.2023 on the link here

Gi Group Staffing Solutions is looking for candidates for these positions: Maintenance Manager (m/f), Chief Operation Officer (m/f), R&D Manager (m/f), Sales Engineer (m/f), Sales Representative (m/f, and many more. They are looking for ambitious and positive individuals who aren't afraid of challenges. The deadline for applying is 31.05.2023. You can apply here

Teleperformance Greece is looking for Croatian Customer Service (m/f). The location of work is Athens, Greece. Employer offers complete relocation support, 2 extra salaries per year, and special events. You can click here and apply until 27.05.2023. 

Thermo Stone d.o.o. is hiring Sales Market Manager (m/f) in Istria County and in the export markets. The employer offers an official vehicle for personal and official use and success bonuses. For more benefits and applying process, check this link until 25.05.2023. 

Pro-Monting d.o.o. is looking for Head Hunter (m/f) in the entirety of Croatia. The employer is offering possibilities of professional improvement, a competitive salary and many more benefits. You can find out more about their benefits on this application. The deadline for applying is 08.06.2023. 

Bravostore d.o.o. is hiring a Seller (m/f) in LEGO store in Zagreb. The Employer will give you a comfortable workplace environment and incentive income. There is a number of other benefits that you can find on this link until 25.05.2023. 

Pepco Croatia d.o.o. is looking for a Seller (m/f) in many locations throughout Croatia. The employer is offering meal allowance and employee discounts. You can apply until 31.05.2023. on the application link. 

Euro Career d.o.o.  is for candidates to fulfill these roles: Beautician (m/f) Masseur (m/f), Chef (m/f), Waiter (m/f), and Pastry Chef (m/f) in Nassfeld. The employer is offering a competitive salary, accommodation, and the possibility of permanent employment. You can apply until 01.06.2023. on application link. 

Workforce Ljudski Potencijali d.o.o. is hiring Researcher (m/f) in Novo Mesto, Slovenia. The employer is offering a motivating compensation package, the option of starting continuing doctoral studies at any nearby university and the option of hybrid work. You can apply here until the role is fulfilled. 

Lidner Montage & Service GmbH is hiring Construction Designer (m/f) in Leipzig and Zagreb. The employer is offering comprehensive training, long-term perspective, and work from home. You can find out more and apply on the link here until 26.05.2023. 

For more career options and job listings, visit


These weekly job listings will appear in the weekly TCN newsletter - you can subscribe here.


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Friday, 19 May 2023

Shopping in Croatia to Change With Limited Working Sundays Coming

May 20, 2023 - Shopping in Croatia has been pretty effortless so far, and it feels like the shops are always open. The new Croatian Trade Act comes into force on July 1st, though, and the most important item it brings is the limitation for shops only to work 16 Sundays a year. So shopping centers, among others, had to think carefully about which Sundays to choose and which ones to give up.

Fortunately for them, as Poslovni writes, there will be 27 Sundays left from July 1st to December 31st, and it will be easier to allocate 16 working days to that period than it will be from next year when a strategy and work plan should be devised throughout the year, writes N1.

While it is somewhat easier for retail chains, it is much more difficult for shopping centers because everything needs to be worked out with the tenants, who have different ideas about working Sundays. That's why, for example, Arena Centar in Zagreb still doesn't have specific dates for working Sundays, but the general idea exists.

"We decided to focus on the increased customer interest period at the year's end. We will inform the public about the exact dates promptly", they told us from the Arena Center.

Avenue Mall already has specific dates for working Sundays, but the people of Zagreb have to prepare that from July 1 to September, they can forget about that shopping center on Sundays.

"We will be open the first three Sundays in September, the first four in October, and all Sundays in November and December," said Avenue Mall.

Split Joker had to think about the tourist season and increased traffic in July and August, so they could not give up working Sundays during that period. Therefore, they had to "deny" themselves Sundays in the months after.

"We will work on July 9, August 20 and 27, September 3, 10 and 17, October 8 and 15, all Sundays in November, and all Sundays in December except the 31st," they say in Joker.

Somehow, the Zagreb City Center One has the best situation for its business because East will work according to one schedule, West according to another. It will overlap only on the busiest dates.

West will be open on July 9, August 13, September 3 and 10, October 8, 15, 22, and 29, every Sunday in November, and every Sunday in December except the 31st. East will be open on 16 July, August 20, September 3 and 17, October 8, 15, 22, and 29, all Sundays in November, and all Sundays in December except the 31st.

Indeed, six months of work according to the new law will be enough time for large shopping centers to prepare for the coming years when they will have to distribute the allowed 16 working Sundays more carefully.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Friday, 19 May 2023

Fines to be Imposed for Unruly Behaviour This Tourist Season in Split

May 20, 2023 - On the night from Thursday to Friday, after an exhausting fifteen-hour session, the Split City Council accepted a decision on public order and peace in the area of Split, according to which inappropriate actions in public places will be fined during the tourist season.

As Poslovni writes, fifteen councilors voted for such a decision, and one abstained - sixteen councilors present means that it was a quorum since the City Council has 31 councilors.
According to that decision, the following will be fined 300 euros: consumption of alcohol in public areas (areas less than 100 meters from schools and kindergartens, within zone A, which includes the city area within the baroque ramparts built in the 17th century; defecating on public areas, sleeping in parks and lawns, squares and other public areas, consuming food or drinking on public areas, staying in catering facilities after the end of working hours.

An amendment was accepted to fine 300 euros for climbing and sitting on monuments and memorial plaques, entering, climbing, and bathing in fountains, and offering and contracting a taxi service that is not prearranged.

A fine of 150 euros will be imposed for vomiting in public areas and construction and installation work from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and from 10:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. to prevent noise.

As explained, this decision on fines considers the media articles in the last tourist season about the inappropriate behavior of tourists in public places in Split, which caused outrage among the city's inhabitants.

This decision, as stated in the explanation, defines offenses against public order and peace in the area of the city of Split, which in an impermissible manner disrupt public order and peace, the work or the order of life of the inhabitants, obstruct movement on the streets, offend morals and threaten the general safety of people and property.

It was also announced that a tender would soon be announced for hiring security guards to assist the police. "During the 90 days in the tourist season, every night from 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m., there will be a dozen security guards on hand to help the police," said Split's deputy mayor, Bojan Ivošević.

Funds for financing security guards, as it was stated, will be provided from the city budget.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Friday, 19 May 2023

CBS Publishes Latest Data on Average Salaries in Croatia

May 20, 2023 - The Croatian Bureau of Statistics published its latest data on the average salaries in Croatia. The report compared the average salaries in March to those in February, as well as this year's wages to last year's.

As Index writes, the average monthly paid net salary per employee in legal entities in Croatia amounted to 1,130 euros in March, which is nominally higher by 11.9 percent and 1.1 percent higher in real terms, according to the data from the Croatian Bureau of Statistics.

According to the report published on Friday, the average salary of 1,130 euros is nominally higher by 2.2 percent and in real terms by 1.3 percent than in February.

The highest average monthly payment of net wages was paid in the field of information service activities, in the amount of 2,327 euros, while the lowest average monthly payment of net wages was paid in the area of protective and investigative activities, in the amount of 738 euros. According to the data from the Croatian Bureau of Statistics, the median net salary for March was 946 euros, which means that half of Croatian employees had less and half more than that amount.

The largest number of paid hours was in the water transport industry

The average monthly gross salary per employee in legal entities for March was 1,556 euros, which is nominally higher by 2.2 percent and real by 1.3 percent compared to February. On an annual level, the average gross salary was nominally higher by 13.5 percent, and in real terms by 2.5 percent. In March, there were an average of 182 paid hours, which is a 15.2 percent increase compared to February.

The highest number of paid hours was in the water transport sector (191), and the lowest number of paid hours was in the social welfare sector without accommodation (160). The average monthly paid net hourly wage for March was 6.08 euros, which is 10.7 percent lower than in February, and 11.8 percent more than in March last year.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Friday, 19 May 2023

A Week in Croatian Politics - Floods, Healthcare Woes and a Trip to Iceland

May the 19th, 2023 - This week in Croatian politics, we've had visits from a Belgian diplomat, the Council of Europe summit in Iceland, flooding issues, ongoing healthcare salary woes and the origin of mysterious threats against the government.

Plenkovic holds a working meeting about the Croatian floods and tells people to go on Google to see how bad it is in Italy

As Index reports, the Karlovac County building played host recently to a working meeting between Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic and his ministers, the local community and competent services on the further activities of all components of the homeland security and civil protection system with the aim of helping the population and preventing damage due to rising water levels.

"Huge water levels in several counties, flood defenses, and abnormally high river levels are continuing. Unfortunately, the situation is similar, maybe even worse, in other European countries," said Plenkovic at the beginning of the working meeting, as reported by N1. The PM thanked everyone who participated in flood defense and those who helped other people before noting that these are record water levels.

"Our defense system could maybe be better"

When asked if there could have been a better reaction in certain places, he said: "As far as I know, the River Una was over five metres in Hrvatska Kostajnica. The situation is complex, but efforts have been made. The defense system may be better. That said, it is better than it has been in the past. Look at the bigger picture, go on Google, see what's happening in Italy. These are huge natural disasters, and there was excellent coordination."

He added that there are about 500 households covered by the Red Cross/Crveni kriz: "If someone didn't manage to get help, it doesn't mean that it won't happen and that that help won't arrive. Minister Tomo Medved will go to Sisak because there are problems with the dams there."

"These are very high water levels"

"In the context of spatial planning and the selection of the locations for facilities, we must take into account the risks in certain areas. Croatian waters have a risk map where flooding is likely to occur, so we need an element of self-prevention. We need to work further on retentions. We heard how important natural retentions are which we have in Lonjsko polje, but now the same will need to be done with the Kupa. Care must be taken to insure these facilities. The mayor said that there are locations where people have constructed things, they're risky areas and because of that, insurance companies don't want to provide insurance policies. These are very high water levels. What used to be a once-in-a-hundred-year defense standard is changing. Why do we have these meetings on global climate change? Because changes happen quickly," Plenkovic concluded.

Another meeting has been scheduled following yet another protest about wages in the healthcare sector

Neither the Nurses' and Technicians' Union nor the Independent Union are satisfied after a meeting with the Ministers of Health, Labour and Finance, and have now demanded an increase in their salaries in any way. Ministers have stated that they will find a solution, and a new meeting regarding those demands has been arranged for Monday.

Minister of Health Vili Beros said after the meeting with the trade unions, which he judged to have been constructive, that they agreed today that some things in the past were really not good, that the stability of the system was disrupted by numerous changes to the regulation on coefficients, and that they have to improve on all of that going forward.

The unions are asking the powers that be within the world of Croatian politics for a ten percent salary increase for all employees working within the healthcare system and say that they cannot just keep sitting, twiddling their thumbs and waiting for the new law to come into force in 2024.

"In good faith and through concrete talks, I believe that we'll manage to find a solution, and the continuation of these talks will take place on Monday. We aren't going to sit and talk about the specific elements of any would-be wage increases for now, and we'll be looking at the broader issue and what lies ahead of us," repeated the minister, adding that the will of the government to improve things is very much there, given that there were three ministers at the meeting who all want to solve these problems together in the context of the arrival of the new law and different regulations.

When asked if these continued talks are leading to the fact that under the new law, healthcare employees will receive not only a ten percent increase but perhaps a larger one, Beros replied that this possibility exists and that a methodology for calculating future coefficients will be presented to all of the ministries, and union representatives will also participate in those calculations.

When asked if the unions could expect a ten percent salary increase before the aforementioned new law was passed, Beros stated that Finance Minister Marko Primorac said at the meeting that "it's difficult to expect changes in the coefficients as such before the new law is passed", but that there are a number of other elements that are very much available. Minister of Labour Marin Piletic said that the new wage law should come into force on January the 1st, 2024, and it will include new coefficients and the base rate. The law will be referred to the parliamentary procedure in June.

Minister Piletic also stated that after the government session, he intends to invite all representatives of the involved unions to sign the addendum to the Basic Collective Agreement and the Collective Agreement, where after three rounds of negotiations they agreed to increase the amount of compensation for all 235,000 employees in state and public services. They decided to raise the compensation from 199 euros to 300 euros for union members, and to 250 for all other employees.

The President of the Main Council of the Croatian Professional Union of Nurses and Technicians, Anica Prasnjak, clarified that on Monday they will continue to discuss their demands, while today they discussed the issue that led to the situation in which they felt that they had to protest.

"We aren't satisfied, but for now we can't really say anything else until we see what another round of talks brings and whether things will move in a different direction as a result. We can't hang onto anything at the moment except for the next meeting, which will be the crowning moment," Prasnjak added.

The president of the Independent Trade Union, Stjepan Topolnjak, said that he will not and cannot wait for until next year for Croatian politics to act in terms of the introduction of a new salary law, nor can he wait for the rules on new coefficients to come into force.

"We aren't interested in how the government will raise our salaries. We're asking for an increase in our salaries, and when it comes to how that will be done, we'll leave that to the minister and possibly to the prime minister," he said. Topolnjak also confirmed that a full strike is still an option that is very firmly on the table should their demands continue to be kicked into the long grass.

Plenkovic attends the Council of Europe's summit in Iceland

Having experienced war and the attempt to wipe out a country and its identity just thirty years ago, the Republic of Croatia has continued to show solidarity with Ukraine in the wake of Russian aggression. The figures we see in Croatian politics may be a lot of things, but their united and unwavering support for Ukraine ever since the Russian invasion has been firm.

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic spoke about Russian aggression against Ukraine at the recently held Council of Europe summit in Iceland. Croatia also officially signed the damage register, a legal instrument that will find ways to compensate Ukraine for the enormous amount of war damage it has suffered at the hands of the Russians, the prime minister said.

"Fundamental values are currently under attack. Freedom is under attack. Democracy is under attack. Russian aggression against Ukraine somehow woke all of us up from the peace that the whole of Europe had enjoyed for decades after the Second World War, as well as the aggression during Milosevic's regime in the countries of the former Yugoslavia, including Croatia," Plenkovic said in an address at the summit meeting of the Council of Europe, an organisation that included Russia until last year.

The heads of state and government of the Council of Europe members adopted the declaration at the end of the summit. "This declaration has one main message - that we're united around common values and that we're all united in solidarity and support for Ukraine," Plenkovic told reporters after the summit.

It's worth noting that the Republic of Croatia became a full member of the Council of Europe on November the 6th, 1996, not long after Yugoslavia collapsed and it gained its independence as a nation. At the summit, Plenkovic recalled the fact that he was part of the team that worked on Croatia's entry into the Council of Europe back in the mid 1990s.

Croatian Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Gordan Grlic-Radman meets with his Belgian counterpart, Hadja Lahbib, in Zagreb

After having recently flown on a commercial flight to the British capital for the coronation of King Charles III earlier this month following Zoran Milanovic's trip to London being cancelled due to a government plane issue, he spent this week busy welcoming a Belgian diplomat.

His counterpart, Hadja Lahbib, made a visit to the Croatian capital this week, and they spent Monday in Zagreb touching on the importance of strengthening Croatian-Belgian bilateral relations in view of the current situation in Europe, and also discussed multiple mutual challenges such as the war in Ukraine and its ongoing negative economic consequences. The ministers emphasised the importance of maintaining contacts between Croatia and Belgium in order to progress at the EU level, as well as to jointly find solutions to current challenges such as decarbonisation. Lahbib also met with PM Andrej Plenkovic.

Since Belgium will preside over the EU Council from January next year, the pair from the spheres of Belgian and Croatian politics also talked about the Schengen area, of which Croatia became a part on the first day of this year, the suppression of illegal migration, the situation in the Western Balkans and the future of the enlargement process as well as the future of the European Union itself.

Grlic-Radman emphasised the importance of unity in decisions that will ensure "solidarity and commitment on the part of EU member states", according to the press release of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs.

The death threats made to Plenkovic and his government ministers which made headlines last week appear to have come from abroad

Most of us have complaints, but there are those who will take it a hundred steps further in their dislike for those in Croatian politics, and death threats aren't that uncommon of an issue. The powers that be within the Croatian police (MUP) recently that they are continuing to conduct a criminal investigation into the threats made against Plenkovic and numerous government ministers last week "with the aim of determining all of the circumstances and identifying those responsible.''

In the police's press release, they stated that on Friday morning, the Zagreb Police Department "received a report from an unknown person who expressed threats towards the Prime Minister and members of the Government of the Republic of Croatia".

In view of the received report, i.e. the seriousness of the threats, additional police forces were dispatched and deployed to St. Mark's Square (Markov trg). RTL Danas/Today has since learned that the threat was made by a man by phone from abroad. Government spokesman Marko Milic also confirmed earlier that the police came to the headquarters of the Croatian Government because of threats to kill the prime minister and his ministers.

Plenkovic has since touched on the issue, noting that this isn't the first time he and his government have received such threats, and that most of them don't end up getting media attention.


For more on Croatian politics, make sure to keep up with our dedicated section. A dedicated Week in Croatian Politics article is also published every Friday.

Friday, 19 May 2023

Second Edition of MUZZA Science Week Kicking off in Zagreb Today

May 19, 2023 – The second edition of MUZZA Science Week, which was a huge hit last year, is kicking off today! From May 19 to 21, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., visitors can expect 60 workshops, interesting lectures, and nine panels at this festival for young and old at pavilion 10a of the Zagreb Fair.

As Poslovni writes, the second edition of MUZZA Science Week, to the delight of children and young people, as well as adults, is taking us into the world of science from May 19 to 21, 2023, in pavilion 10a of the Zagreb Fairgrounds from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. This year's edition is titled Smart Futures and will have 40 partners present on the latest achievements in science, the future in the STEM field, and humanistic, natural, and social topics. In three days, nine panels will be held on the subject of Smart Future.

Entrance to MUZZA Science Week is free for all visitors. Science Week is a new experience for children, young people, and students. It gathers the academic and technological community and entrepreneurs; through interactive learning and networking, its visitors meet the scientists.

"We are delighted to present the best of Croatian science to the most important audience, children and young people. We believe it is essential to promote real values and emphasize education and science as pillars of an advanced society. We invite children, young people, their teachers, and parents to visit us and enjoy the fun aspects of science." - said Đurđica Protić, president of the MUZZA association.

This year's MUZZA Science Week covers all relevant topics, dividing the program into 14 areas: Looking into space, Humanities - the science of man, Superorganism, Future of robots, Future of traffic, Little scientists, Sensational science, Muzza LAB, E-LAB, Ecology and climate, Film and media literacy, Play to health, Plant and animal world and Interactive workshops.

  "The Tourist Board of the City of Zagreb is happy to support MUZZA Science Week. The goal of this educational and tourist event is to promote science and bring it closer to children and young people, and this is important not only for the citizens of Zagreb but also for the guests who visit our city precisely for such events." - said Martina Bienenfeld, director of the Zagreb Tourist Board.

This year, MUZZA Science Week offers nine panels where competent participants will talk about the impact that technology has on the present and future of the global community. Based on the development so far, many processes can be predicted, so it will be interesting to hear how scientists, researchers, entrepreneurs, and educators think about the future. Some participants include university professor Bojan Jerbić from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Shipbuilding; president of the Society of Architects Zagreb Tihomil Matković; dean of the Zagreb Polytechnic Prof. dr. sc. Jana Žiljak Gršić, dean of the Faculty of Transport Sciences, associate professor, Ph.D. Marko Šoštarić; Mislav Malenica, president of the CroAI association and CEO of Mindsmiths; board president of Končar d.d. Gordan Kolak; Hrvoje Balen, CEO of Algebra and president of HUP ICT; Vjekoslav Majetić, innovator and CEO of DOK-ING; associate professor, Ph.D. Ana Sović Kržić, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing; Ph.D. Lovro Palaversa and Ph.D. Vibor Jelić from the Ruđer Bošković Institute, and many others.

Last year, more than 9,000 children and young people visited MUZZA Science Week. With a new location and a significant increase in exciting content and programs, this year's "Smart Future" is not to be missed!

More information on the MUZZA Science Week official website, as well as on their Facebook and Instagram.

The project partners include: Tourist Board of the City of Zagreb, City of Zagreb, Ministry of Science and Education, Croatian Foundation for Children, Croatian Employers' Association, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Shipbuilding, Technical Polytechnic in Zagreb, Faculty of Transport Sciences, University of Zagreb Faculty of Chemistry of Engineering and Technology, Faculty of Kinesiology Zagreb, Croatian Catholic University, Faculty of Mining, Geology and Petroleum, Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, University of Zagreb Faculty of Agriculture, Open University of Algebra, Faculty of Medicine in Zagreb and Croatian Institute for Brain Research, Croatian Society for Medical Biochemistry and laboratory medicine, Sveti Duh Clinical Hospital, Ruđer Bošković Institute, Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Končar, Rimac, Tesla, Croatian Museum of Natural History, Typhological Museum, I want a book, Ida Didacta, Plavi svijet, Fizika Express, Petica - play for health, Atos, Alert - full service marketing agency, Zvona Catering, CircuitMess, Robokacija, Deloitte, FINA, Erste Card Club d.o.o. and Erste&Steiermärkische Bank d.d.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.

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