Friday, 27 August 2021

Despite Crisis, 2021 Saw Fewest Dismissals So Far; Nine in Ten Jobs Insecure

ZAGREB, 27 Aug 2021 - Only one in ten people who have found a job this year have been given permanent work contracts while 90% have found short or fixed-term jobs, Večernji List daily said on Friday, noting that despite the crisis, 2021 saw the fewest dismissals so far.

With the present share of insecure and short-term work Croatia has been holding the European record for years. In the first seven months of 2021 permanent work contracts were signed by slightly less than 9,500 previously employed persons while 83,000 signed fixed-term contracts, the daily says.

Labour market fluctuations are common but mass-scale hiring based on fixed-term employment contracts, followed by dismissals, has been a constant in Croatia for the past 20 years or so.

In 2019 and 2020 around 120,000 workers were hired on a fixed-term basis annually, and some of them probably signed such contracts with the same employer more than one time. Around 100,000 annually re-registered with the employment service, where they waited for another opportunity.

The seasonal character of Croatia's economy is determined by employment in tourism and the related services but fixed-term employment is present also in all other sectors. The prevalence of short-term employment has only been partially alleviated by high government incentives to businesses that sign fixed-term employment contracts with persons under 30.

Since 2015 the state has offered five-year exemption from the payment of wage contributions to businesses that give young people permanent work contracts. These incentives are currently paid for around 150,000 young people, of whom only about 20,000 were given permanent work contracts right away.

Even though this is a strong financial intervention, it has lowered the previous share of fixed-term contracts in the total number of new contracts from 95 to 90%, which bears evidence of the complexity of the problem of short-term hiring.

The number of workers who were declared redundant in the first seven months of 2021 is similar to the same period of 2019 but it is much lower than in 2020. Apart from workers who were declared redundant, another 900 workers were fired because their employers ceased operating, which is a significantly lower number than in the past two years, the daily says.

For more on business, CLICK HERE.

Wednesday, 21 July 2021

Croatian Bureau of Statistics (DZS): Volume of Construction Work up 16% in May, Rising For 12 Months in Row

ZAGREB, 21 July, 2021 - The volume of construction work carried out in Croatia in May 2021 rose 15.9% compared with May 2020, and it fell by 0.1% compared with April 2021, according to data provided by the National Bureau of Statistics (DZS) on Wednesday.

May was the 12th consecutive month to see the rise in the volume of construction work on an annual level.

Year on year, the volume of construction work to buildings increased by 18% and the volume of construction work to other structures grew by 13%. Month on month, the volume of construction work to buildings fell by 0.3%, while the volume of construction work to other structures decreased by 0.9%.

For more about business in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 7 May 2021

PM Andrej Plenković Says Gov't to Continue With Active Employment Policy

ZAGREB, 7 May, 2021 - Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, who is taking part in the Social Summit in Porto, said on Friday that his government would continue with its active policy towards workers because it considered workers to be important.

"After four years we are again focusing on social rights, workers' protection, social inclusion and dialogue, equal opportunities, the possibility to help our workers across the EU through the principle of European solidarity and to save jobs through cooperation," Plenković told reporters upon arrival in Porto, Portugal, where the summit is taking place.

Portugal, which has been chairing the EU since January, is hosting the summit at which the leaders of the EU's 27 member states will try to put into practice a document called "The European Pillar of Social Rights", agreed to four years ago.

Among the 20 principles stated in the document, are training and lifelong learning, gender equality, fair pay and workers' participation in talks on forms and conditions of work.

"In that regard, Croatia has done quite a lot in the past 15 months," said Plenković.

"We have saved jobs, supported workers, as well as employers. Numbers speak for themselves, today we have more insurees than we had last year, and what is more important, we have more than we did in 2019," he said.

"We have invested more than €10 billion in workers' wages, secured funds for those who had to work shorter hours, as well as for fixed costs, making it possible for more than 120,000 employers to keep their workers and pay wages," he said.

Croatians, just like citizens of other EU countries, have felt the health and economic consequences of the coronavirus crisis. Thousands of workers have lost jobs and many fear poverty.

According to figures form the Croatian Employment Service, the unemployment rate in Croatia is 9.3%.

"The state has exempted many from paying both taxes and contributions. We will continue with an active employment policy," Plenković said.

Portugal's Socialist government in January set strengthening social rights in Europe as on of its priorities during its EU presidency, which ends in June.

The European Commission in March presented a plan under which the number of poor people in the EU would be reduced by 15 million by the end of 2030.

The forum in Porto focuses on that plan and PM Plenković is expected to participate in a panel discussion on that topic later in the day.

The Porto summit is taking place one week after International Workers' Day, when workers across Europe once again pointed out their difficult situation.

For more about politics in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

 

Tuesday, 8 September 2020

Croatia Among EU Countries With Sharpest GDP Declines In Q2

ZAGREB, Sept 8, 2020  - Croatia is among the EU countries with the sharpest GDP declines in Q2 of this year compared with the previous quarter, according to Eurostat's estimate released on Tuesday. 

In the second quarter of 2020, compared with the previous quarter, seasonally adjusted GDP decreased by 11.4% in the EU and by 11.8% in the euro area. In the first quarter of the year, GDP had declined by 3.3% in the EU and by 3.7% in the euro area.

Compared with the second quarter of 2019, seasonally adjusted GDP fell by 13.9% in the EU and by 14.7% in the euro area, following declines of 2.7% and 3.2% respectively in the first quarter.

Spain sees by far the sharpest drop

All the EU member states recorded declines in economic activity in the second quarter, both month on month and year on year.

The sharpest quarterly decline, of 18.5%, was recorded in Spain, followed by Croatia (-14.9%), Hungary (-14.5%), Greece (-14.0%), Portugal (-13.9%) and France (-13.8%). In the first quarter of the year, Croatia observed a GDP decline of 1.3% quarter on quarter. 

Germany, the EU's strongest economy, saw its GDP shrink by 9.7%.

The lowest quarterly declines of GDP were observed in Finland (-4.5%), Lithuania (-5.5%), and Estonia (-5.6%).

Compared with the second quarter of 2019, the largest GDP declines were recorded in Spain (-22.1%), France (-18.9%), and Italy (-17.7%). The German economy contracted by 11.3%.

Croatia's GDP fell by 15.1% compared with the second quarter of last year, while in the first quarter of this year it had grown by 0.3% year on year.

The lowest annual declines were observed in Ireland (-3.7%) and Lithuania (-4.0%).  

A heavy blow to employment

The pandemic and measures put in place to contain the spread of the infection dealt a heavy blow to employment both in the EU and the euro area, resulting in the sharpest declines in the number of people employed in both zones since Eurostat started tracking data.

The number of employed persons decreased by 2.7% in the EU and by 2.9% in the euro area in the second quarter of 2020 compared with the previous quarter. In the first quarter of this year, employment had declined by 0.2% in the EU and by 0.3% in the euro area.

Compared with the second quarter of 2019, employment fell by 2.9% in the EU and by 3.1% in the euro area, after increasing by 0.4% in both zones in the first quarter.

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily

Read the Croatian Travel Update in your language - now available in 24 languages

Join the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community.

Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Coronavirus to Cost Thousands of Jobs, Steep Drops in Wages

March 31, 2020 — The coronavirus’s first non-medical victims are 8,000 workers facing unemployment, as well as 300,000 others facing steep paycuts down to minimum wage, according to Vecernji List.

The stark The Tax Administration yesterday said it received 39,047 requests from companies and craftsmen to delay their payment of taxes; one-third of the requests came from the hotel and catering industry.

In addition to companies and entrepreneurs who are banned from working, others with a drop in income of more than 20 percent, including the self-employed can count on government assistance in paying wages.

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic’s government met on Monday to create a new package of measures to alleviate the problems of entrepreneurs during the coronavirus epidemic. The measures reportedly include a freeze on administrative fees and compulsory contributions to the Ministry of Economy. Officials expect the plan will be adopted this week.

Under the proposal, oft-lamented fees would not be charged over the next three months, with an option to extend the measures if necessary. The cutback on compulsory payments would also include government fees for water usage, radio frequencies, and membership fees for the Croatian National Tourism Board, among others.

Sources told Vecernji some fee cancellations experienced headwinds, particularly the compulsory charge for Croatian Radio Television (HRT) service.

The Economic Ministry says some of the benefits now being discussed will be permanently abolished, in line with the plans for administrative relief already in the works before the crisis.

There are also rumors from Brussels that the minimum support given by the European Commission will be raised from the current €200,000 will be raised to €1 million.

In the two weeks of isolation, the number of unemployed citizens registered with the Employment Service increased by more than 6,000, but also information that three thousand workers had found a job. The fees cancellations would come as many small businesses worry for their future.

Croatia has approximately 100,000 active legal entities and about 80 thousand craftsmen. Already in the first week of implementation of the coronavirus measures, every fourth craftsman and every fifth company requested a tax deferral. 

The hospitality and tourism sector had 12,804 requests, the most of any.  More than 800 entrepreneurs from the health and social care systems, 762 from information and communication activities, and 639 from real estate businesses are also seeking a delay.

There is a lot of focus on public sector salaries as well. The Institute for Public Finance calculated that reducing public sector salaries would do more harm than good at the moment. 

Cutting the salaries of employees in institutions and companies where the government is the predominant employer would bring relatively modest savings of 0.38 to 1.22 percent of GDP annually, while the negative consequences would be much greater.

The negatives include a fall in citizens' living standards, a fall in spending, a loss of staff, the collapse of public institutions, and an even greater decline in GDP. However, the authors of the analysis do not dispute that, when the crisis is over, public sector wage cuts will eventually come to a head.

Monday, 20 May 2019

National Action to Keep Educated Youth in Croatia Held in Zagreb

As VLM/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 20th of May, 2019, two respected Croatian newspapers, Večernji list and Poslovni dnevnik, in cooperation with the University of Zagreb and the Faculty of Economics in Zagreb, are set to organise a round table entitled Future in Croatia and a ''time travelling'' exhibition through Večernji list's history.

After successful events already held in Osijek, Koprivnica, Rijeka, Zadar and Split, Zagreb will now play host to this national action launched by the Vecernji list group with the ultimate goal of retaining young educated people here in Croatia in the face of continuing and concerning negative demographic trends.

The event will be opened by Večernji list's Andrea Borošić, Prof. dr. sc. Lorena Škuflić and Prof. dr. sc. Damir Boras.

The Zagreb roundtable will discuss the vital importance of the retention of young and educated people here in the Republic of Croatia, and will be attended by numerous significant figures from across the spectrum of both politics and science in Croatia who have succeeded in standing out in their respective fields.

The first part of the program will conclude with the official opening of Večernji list's exhibition "We've been together for 60 years", which, through interesting and interactive content, will present the rich history of Croatia's media leader, along with an introductory speech from the curator.

At the very end of the program, an interactive forum will be held during which a student contest in writing projects will presented, and the present Večernji list group will reward the excellence of Croatian students.

Guests will be Podravka's dr. Sc. Jasmina Ranilović, PLIVA's Blagica Petrovac Šikić, UVI eSports d.o.o.'s Marko Komerički and the directors and founders of the company Hodajuće reklama Tino Vrbanović and Ante Starčević, who will present their encouraging and successful business ventures and projects which have been realised here in Croatia to all those gathered there.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and lifestyle pages for much more. If it's just Zagreb and what's going on in the capital you're interested in, follow Total Zagreb or check out Zagreb in a Page.

 

Click here for the original article by VLM on Poslovni Dnevnik

Thursday, 16 May 2019

Most Successful Croatian Company Coming to Veliko Trgovišće

Veliko Trgovišće is a little place in the continental Croatian county of Krapina-Zagorje. If it wasn't for independent Croatia's very first president Franjo Tuđman having been born there, it would certainly be even less known than it is now, as this unassuming little Zagorje municipality has a mere 5,000 inhabitants and is very rarely talked about in the media.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 15th of May, 2019, RTL Direct went directly to this small municipality to try and see just what it has to offer. They found out that Veliko Trgovišće is no stranger to the production of tablecloths, napkins and linens which travel from Veliko Trgovišće to London restaurants and even to Las Vegas casinos.

Finka has been working there for 37 years and she's one of eighty people working in this village's textile factory, and she states that people in Zagorje will ''never remain hungry'' when discussing what it's like to live in this very rural and little known part of Zagorje.

That same factory moved ten years ago from the Croatian capital of Zagreb, taking part of its workers with it.

"The Trgovišće Factory is the largest garment manufacturer, it exports to 25 countries all over the world, from England and Switzerland, to exotic destinations like Dubai,'' stated Dražen Kolarek, finance manager at the factory.

Mate Rimac and his company, otherwise one of the most successful companies in the whole of Croatia, Rimac Automobili, is also on his way to this little Croatian county, and you can read his entire interview here.

This Croatian municipality has a few successful businesses, unemployment there is at less than an enviable three percent, the first Croatian president was born there, and they also want the status of a city there. That ''city'' status will likely be obtained because, as Veliko Trgovišće's Robert Greblički has already stated, this little Croatian municipality meets all of the necessary prerequisites.

"The first president was born here, we're raising the number of people living here, we're developing entrepreneurship, so I think that we can copy Sveta Nedjela in time," Greblički added.

As soon as this completely unassuming little Croatian municipality gains its city status, it can truly become, as its name suggests: Big (Veliko).

Make sure to stay up to date by following our dedicated business page for much more on Croatian business, Croatian companies and Croatian manufacturing.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Mate Rimac Employs First Deaf Person to Graduate from FER

Statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in the Republic of Croatia, but unfortunately it is rare for them to complete their higher education.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 14th of April, 2019, Josip Ivanković was born in Čapljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, but just one year after his birth, he was declared deaf, and this fact was one of his reasons for his relocation to Croatia. His move to Croatia certainly paid off as being the right move, and Josip, despite the diagnosis, managed to develop his speech and the technique of listening. That was, as Josip himself states, a painstaking and long process.

"The situation is that I have to treat speaking Croatian as if I was speaking a foreign language," Josip Ivanković explained.

For four years now, his speech and listening abilities have been being developed at the SUVAG Polyclinic, where Josip learned to speak with vibration, tone amplification, visualisation and by learning anatomy.

"When I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'', I had to touch the vocal chords of the logopad to feel a certain vibration and titration, then I'd lean my hand on my neck to feel the same vibration, so I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'' I learned to pronounce ''ž'' in a similar way, I just put my hand on my head. Generally speaking, the hardest letters to pronounce for the deaf are l,č,ć,đ,dž,lj and nj, and the reason for that is that such letters can't be visually identified. They're explained through the anatomy of the oral cavity, just like a doctor explains the heart's organs, or where the blood enters and where it exits,'' explained Josip.

After the kindergarten era ended, in which he learned the basics of socialisation, it was decided that he should attend a regular school.

This period of schooling, without any curriculum adjustment, he adds, was defined by perseverance, and communicational misunderstandings are, in his words, quite normal and natural.

"The professors made me equal with my peers, and this proved to be a good thing because I learned so much about the world of those who can hear, and I learned how to gather information," said Josip. As stated, statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in Croatia, but it is rare for them to complete higher education. Josip was not one of them, and he completed a college which has some very demanding academic requirements for its students.

He enrolled at FER (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing), and the likelihood of him completing his studies was slim, yet Josip had different plans for himself.

"At the beginning of the semester, it was very difficult for me to adapt,'' recalled Josip. Before Josip's arrival, professors from Zagreb's FER didn't have any experience in working with people with impaired hearing. At the beginning, he failed several exams, but he didn't let that dampen his spirit, and later he turned to further consultations.

This combination led him to become the very first deaf person to graduated from that college.

"The professors were very approachable, and our relationship was very flexible and adaptable. I will never forget how Professor Brnetić, instead of me asking him, personally invited me to consultations during the holidays and showed me much he cared that I didn't miss anything from the lecture. On the other hand, one professor asked me during consultations why I didn't go to the lectures and asked me how I was learning. I told him that I don't go to the lectures because I can't hear them. I took out a 100-page notebook with my assignments, and the professor was surprised that I did all that without having gone to any lectures. He asked me to lend him that notebook and later I learned that he'd showed my notebook to all of the professors. Believe it or not, a year after when I came to his office, that copy of the notebook was still on his desk,'' Josip stated, recalling his faculty days.

In the end, none of the obstacles he faced along the way turned him away from his goal, and he passed 62 engagements that mostly relied solely on him and his level of dedication. This FER student didn't have to wait around long before a job opportunity came knocking, and it wasn't your regular offer. He started his working life at no less than Rimac Automobili as an Embedded Hardware Engineer. Rimac had no problems with his deafness and offered him a position after his interview.

''At the beginning of the job, I was given a pretty demanding project that I had to complete within a month, which was the length of my trial period, and when the project ended I realised that I was able to complete it and was given the green light to remain with the firm,'' Josip said. The work never stops at Rimac Automobili, and at the moment, Josip is working on a project for the development of electric car chargers.

"Communication skills are the most difficult for me, because I have to invest extra energy into lip reading and that's mentally challenging and difficult. Imagine a situation in which a colleague is referring to professional terms, and I need to decode them with and put them into context in order for me to have any understanding. Imagine switching off your ears, and focusing your eyes on their lips alone.

You aren't likely to understand because they're not using standard words, they're using technical phrases that are difficult to decode and recognise. At the beginning, it was very difficult for me to follow verbal communication and understand the complexity of the project. Of course, since working here I've changed a lot and become much more calm, more focused and concentrated on the small things. The worst thing is when a colleague does not know how to communicate with me properly, and this is where I'm concerned about information which is valuable to the project, and that's an extra effort. Each colleague has his own specific way of speaking and they aren't all the same in communication. With time, I somehow adjusted to them, and they also had to adapt to me, I accepted that this was all normal and there would always be a situation where they couldn't understand, but I'll always ask them to repeat themselves not just twice, but 1000 times!'' concluded Josip.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Ivan Tominac for Poslovni Dnevnik

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Above Board or Below Board, Croatia's Employment Issues Continue

Croatia's employment issues are somewhat perplexing to many, and although there has apparently been a massive drop in unemployment, there's only been a very slight jump in those registering as newly employed. The maths doesn't always really add up, but unfortunately the demographic picture of the country explains it all.

As Jadranka Dozan/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 10th of April, 2019, at this time of year, official data on employment levels tends to heavily reflect the huge levels of seasonality Croatia's labour market is affected by with every passing year, of course, this is primarily owing to the increased employment levels of seasonal workers before the start of the main tourist season in summer. The latest figures from HZMO (Croatian Pension Insurance Fund) from March show some growth in the number of insured persons, both on a monthly and an annual basis, with positive annual rates having continued to some degree or another since March 2015, while monthly growth began in only in February, according to analysts from Raiffeisen Bank (RBA).

Last month, the number of insured persons increased by 14,000, to a total of 1.52 million people, and it is realistic to expect that the number of insured persons will increase even more owing to the opening up of seasonal positions in preparation for the tourist season, an economic trend which could easily continue until September. When compared to March last year, the number of insured persons more than 32,000 or 2.2 percent higher.

Along with the pretty positive indicators from HZMO's labour market information, the Croatian Bureau of Statistic's labour force surveys are more in line with the process of the huge problem of the mass emigration of Croatia's fit, healthy, working-age population and the demographic of an aging general population. The latest survey, in which the last quarter of 2018 was included, indicates an annual drop in Croatia's working-age population from 3.54 to 3.52 million.

Those who are economically active in Croatia, whether they're already working or actively looking for a job, numbered just 1.8 million at the end of 2018, which is 42,000 people or 2.3 percent less than the year before. Despite the positive economic data, the activity rate dropped from 52 to 51 percent. Activity and employment rates have, at least for some time now, been indicative of much more than just the general rate of unemployment. This applies in particular to activities that are needed in more economically developed EU countries, and jobs that tend to be given to (highly) skilled staff.

Economists have been warning for a long time that recent developments in reduce the potential for growth in Croatia in the long term. The number of unemployed people in Croatia in the last quarter of the year, according to the results of the survey conducted in the last quarter of 2018, dropped when compared to the previous year by 46,000 people, or 23 percent, to 154,000 people. At the same time, however, the number of employees increased only very slightly, by 0.3 percent, meaning just 5,000 people more, to 1.64 million. In the fourth quarter, the activity rate and the employment rate recorded lower values ​​(51 percent and 46.6 percent), according to RBA.

In the last quarter of 2018, the numbers of economically inactive people older than fifteen increased by just one percent. Finally, the year ended with the fall of Croatia's unemployment rate to 8.3 percent, which is also the first drop below 10 percent since 2009, the year which followed the 2008 recession, but unfortunately this is partly a consequence of Croatia's negative demographic trend.

Although Croatia's growth in employment is of course very encouraging, analysts warn that it should be noted that the number of employees has been growing at a mild rate for the last five years, and that the average number of employees is still 6.5 percent lower than in before the crisis back in 2008. Overall, they conclude, Croatia's labour market remains very fragile and is burdened with some extremely serious structural problems, especially in terms of the total mismatch of supply and demand, long-term unemployment, and the falling number of working-age people for the ninth year in a row.

Make sure to follow our dedicated politics and business pages for much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Jadranka Dozan for Poslovni Dnevnik

Monday, 8 April 2019

Sestrunj Shop Job Applied for From Ireland, Germany, America...

We recently reported on an unusual job offer on the island of Sestrunj in the Zadar archipelago. What might appear to many to be a simple job working in a shop has attracted a rather large amount of attention, from Croatia, Europe, and even beyond.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 8th of April, 2019, there haven't been any schools on the island of Sestrunj for a long time now, and on the island itself, there are only twenty permanent residents.

While Croats tend to move to Ireland in their droves for work opportunities, higher salaries and more job security, Sestrunj, a small island in the Zadar archipelago, has been attracting attention from all sides since the posting of a job offer in a shop on the island, with would-be employees making contact from Ireland, Germany, and even all the way from America, as RTL reports.

Sestrunj - a little island close to Zadar, hasn't even had a shop for four months, and the only the place where you can go and have a drink is at some sort of pensioner's association on the island.

Since Sestrunj has been without a shop for the last four months, supplying the island naturally poses a big problem.

Eventually, the powers that be decided that Sestrunj's store needed to make a return to the island and contacted some commercial chains, and as the first condition for the job, they needed a person who would be willing to move to the island and live there. The interest in the small shop was quite surprising, and so far as many as forty job applications from around the world have arrived on Sestrunj's quiet shores.

"There were mostly people from Slavonia, and there were also people from the United States, Germany, Canada, a gentleman from Ireland called, he was willing to come back to the area," said Nenad Šužberić from Sestrunj.

"They're sick of the crowds in the city, they're probably expecting to come and have some peace on the island and all that," said Sestrunj resident Berislav Fatović.

The shop will need to be done up, but the apartment for the person who will work there is ready.

"It's nice to live here because it's quiet and it's different way of life than in Zadar, in town, but we're missing this shop because you need to think about the most basic necessities in advance, to make sure you've everything you need to have in the house," admitted Zdravka Dilber.

With the re-opening of Sestrunj's shop, everything would be much easier for the island's residents.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.

Page 1 of 2

Search