Tuesday, 9 March 2021

Labour Minister Josip Aladrović: "We Are on Right Track to Agree on COVID Pension Supplement"

ZAGREB, 9 March, 2021 - Labour Minister Josip Aladrović said on Tuesday that negotiations were underway with pensioner unions and associations about COVID supplements for retirees.

"We've had a few operational meetings and that issue is something that cannot be resolved in such a short time however, I am certain that we are on the right track for an agreement regarding a COVID supplement," said Aladrović, when asked by the press whether the talks reached a standstill.

He announced that talks on that issue would continue at the end of this week and in the coming period.

"I am certain that Croatia can become one of the countries that introduces a COVID supplement but we have to be aware on the other hand of the fiscal limits in our budget," he added.

Aladrović added that he would leave all options open,however, he is certain that good will for an agreement exists and that it is possible.

Asked whether the decision was waiting for the local election, Aladrović said that this is a supplement that is unknown in other European countries and that it cannot be brought into the context of current political circumstances and situations.

Last month during a meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, pensioner associations raised the issue of a COVID supplement and asked for just over 800,000 pensioners with a pension allowance of up to HRK 2,710 to be paid a COVID supplement of €150 (HRK 1,125).

They also proposed that about 244,000 pensioners with pension allowances between HRK 2,710 and HRK 5,000 be given a supplement of €100 (HRK 750) and for 7,200 single pensioners who receive a pension allowance of more than HRK 5,000 to be given a supplement of €50 (HRK 375).

The supplement would, according to their calculations, come to HRK1.93 billion.

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

Tuesday, 9 March 2021

Labour Minister Josip Aladrović for protecting platform workers

ZAGREB, 9 March, 2021 - Labour Minister Josip Aladrović said on Tuesday that better protection of platform workers would be addressed as part of Labour Act amendments and that an attempt would be made to regulate that type of work.Speaking to the press, he said the first round of consultations on the amendments was expected to be completed by the end of this month.

Aladrović said platform work was a new type of work "appearing everywhere in the world, including in Croatia."

It concerns first and foremost delivery workers and drivers working via digital global platforms. The minister said it was estimated that 5% of Europeans were platform workers.

"That's certainly a segment of work that will have to be additionally protected so that it's not part of precarious work and so that the safety of such jobs is of a higher level."

Aladrović said Croatia could be one of the first countries in Europe to regulate that type of work by law.

Since this type of work is not adequately regulated, it is difficult to speculate how many people in Croatia are platform workers, he said, adding that it was yet to be seen how platform work would be regulated.

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

Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Coronavirus Allowance for Croatian Pensioners Coming?

February the 17th, 2021 - Are Croatian pensioners set to get a boost to their monthly income in the form of coronavirus allowance? If so, for some that amount could be as much as an additional 200 euros.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Labour Miniser Josip Aladrovic stated recently that given the severity of the economic situation caused by the spread of the novel coronavirus, compensation must be provided, from which it could be concluded that the Croatian Government is seriously considering the payment of one-time assistance to Croatian pensioners.

Croatian Pensioners' associations previously requested the payment of a one-time coronavirus pension supplement which would be calculated depending on the existing monetary amount of an individual person's pension.

For Croatian pensioners with pensions up to 2710 kuna per month, the supplement would be as much as 200 euros, people whose pensions are from 2710 to 5000 should, according to them, receive 100 euros each, and single people with a monthly pension of more than 5000 kuna should receive 50 euros, according to a report from Vecernji list. For this proposed one-time payment to Croatian pensioners, the state budget would have to provide around 1.1 billion kuna, Minister Aladrovic emphasised during a weekly show held on Croatian Radio.

''We're aware that some countries have paid out coronavirus allowances related to the increase in material costs of retirees during this trying period. We also need to find some sort of model of compensation. At the same time, the indexation of pensions is coming, for which we will see in just ten days how much it will be. When we know how much our indexation is, we will know precisely how much our fiscal capacity is,'' said Minister Aladrovic.

Looking at this year's budget, there is currently no money in it for coronavirus pension supplements, but the local elections in May are quickly approaching, so that argument could be more crucial given the country's fiscal capabilities, as Croatia should provide about 42 billion kuna for pensions this year.

However, in addition to the state budget, such a payment may be covered by some social programmes of the European Commission (EC).

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.

Saturday, 13 February 2021

Minister Josip Aladrovic Talks Government Support as Measures Ease

February the 13th, 2021 - Minister Josip Aladrovic has discussed what business owners can expect in regard to continued financial support from the Croatian Government as the country will slowly begin to ease some measures relating to the current ban on their work as of Monday.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Labour Minister Josip Aladrovic has revealed how the latest easing up of Croatia's anti-epidemic measures will affect the economy and how we're dealing with the consequences of those previous closures.

Josip Aladrovic commented on the easing of measures for HRT, saying that the decision was guided by lower infection figures in the recent period and the expectations they have for the next period.

"We believe that this sort of measure easing is the optimum thing at the moment. In addition to epidemiological measures, we've also enabled the use of economic measures to overcome this crisis as easily as possible. We consider the activities we've reflected on to be the most important to protect businesses at this time,'' said Josip Aladrovic.

"At this moment, it isn't realistic to go for the greater relaxation of any coronavirus measures. New strains of the virus have emerged and we don't know what effects they could leave on the epidemiological picture. This is a signal to citizens and enterprise owners that we've relaxed certain things to make it easier for everyone to fight the pandemic. This is what's currently realistic and what we believe is opportune at the moment from both the economic and epidemiological point of view,'' he added.

Aladrovic also confirmed that business owners who open their doors on Monday can continue to count on government grants.

"Measures to preserve jobs are in force until the end of February for those who plan to open their businesses on Monday and for those who aren't or can't. The reimbursement of fixed costs will continue being done using the the same principle. We want those who work in catering and hospitality and all those who had to closed to realise at least one part of their income through this relaxation of these measures, and the other part of it, as it was before, will be borne by the state,'' he said.

Aladrovic noted that the measures which were last adopted were due to continue until the end of February, and in the coming days he'll consider options related to the epidemiological framework and economic measures.

"We all need to be aware of our fiscal constraints and what the impact of these measures is on the state budget," he said, warning that there would be some tightening of economic measures, too.

"To all those whose business is objectively endangered, the state will be on their side as it was before," he said, before going on to confirm that the problem of delays in the payment of aid for the preservation of jobs has now thankfully been resolved.

"For the month of January, 19,000 out of 29,000 requests were processed, and 250 million kuna has been paid out to those businesses so far. Within ten to twelve days, everything else will certainly be paid out," he said.

Unemployment is visible on the Croatian labour market, and Josip Aladrovic pointed out that the pandemic had certainly left its mark, but added that Croatia recorded a drop in employment of only 7,000 insured persons when comparing the end of January this year with the end of January 2020, just before the pandemic began to truly take hold on a global scale.

"These are positive trends, that's what makes us happy. There are certain sectors that have experienced significant growth like the IT and construction sectors,'' he said.

Speaking about the European Commission's latest GDP forecasts, Aladrovic said that the growth rates are slightly higher than the ones forecasted by the government, while the fall rates for last year are lower than expected.

"In the past three weeks, we've seen a significant increase in demand for labour. This means that all those who are preparing for the tourist season and builders who are oriented to those areas affected by the earthquakes are significantly preparing for a wave of employment. We expect that all this will have positive economic consequences,'' he said.

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.

Page 4 of 4