Thursday, 10 March 2022

Business Survival in Question Without Croatian Tourism Sector Wage Increase

March the 10th, 2022 - Without an increase in Croatian tourism sector employee wages, the very existence of some companies and businesses could well be called into question, especially following two years of coronavirus-induced stagnation.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, after two years of stagnation in the material rights of workers in the Croatian tourism sector, this year, all major domestic tourism companies have decided to make a significant step forward in increasing the material rights of their workers.

Valamar, Plava Laguna, Aminess, Maistra, Jadran and LRH will all pay their employees the maximum non-taxable amount as allowed by current tax regulations, and their salary increase will be from 5.5 to as much as 50 percent for certain jobs.

The main reason is the chronic shortage of workers who began to threaten the survival of this sort of business, as was pointed out by the unions in the Croatian tourism sector. Although the unions welcomed the decisions of these employers in the announcements that have been being made over recent days, they still made sure to note that they were forced to take this route, and it isn't because of some deep desire to do so.

They also noted that last year, due to the uncertain tourist season until the summer arrived, accompanied by a lack of workers, workers' rights were violated on a large scale.

The unions and the inspections were biting their nails often because that year was difficult for everyone, but this year there will be no procrastination, Marina Cvitic, president of the Trade Unions of Istria, Kvarner and Dalmatia, explained.

"We do need to be honest and say that this increase in wages is primarily the result of the situation on the labour market. From 2010 to 2019, salaries increased from 2 to a maximum of 4 percent. At that time, all companies operating within the Croatian tourism sector achieved very good results with a profit of millions, acquisitions were made, investments were made in facilities, there was money for everything except the employees. As such, there was no major employment for an indefinite period, on the contrary, the number of permanently employed workers only decreased as the elderly retired,'' recalled Marina Cvitic.

All this drove these workers out of Croatia, not only seasonal workers, but also permanent, very high quality workers. At the time when the migration of workers within the EU was made possible, many workers emigrated.

"At the end of last year alone, it could be sensed that employers intended to be much more generous this year compared to the years before the pandemic. So today we have a situation in which companies within the Croatian tourism sector have poorer results than they did before the pandemic, and yet employee salary increases and other material rights are much higher. The attitude towards workers in most companies has changed significantly. Back at the end of 2021, the number of workers on permanent contracts increased significantly. The number of permanent seasonal workers who are allowed to have an employment relationship and certain incomes throughout the year has also increased.

As a rule, a contract is no longer concluded with seasonal workers for a month or two, but for a longer period of time. One-time non-taxable awards are usually given in the most intense seasonal months,'' explained Cvitic.

The union attributes a significant role to itself in creating this wage policy, including an initiative to provide free meals to local workers, and to make adjustments to transportation fees. However, violations of workers' rights are still almost normal among small employers.

For more, check out our business section.

Thursday, 24 February 2022

Croatian Workers: Has The "Great Resignation" Trend Reached Us?

February the 24th, 2022 - The Great Resignation, or as it is also often referred to, ''The Big Quit'', is a trend among employees who, in large numbers, leave their jobs voluntarily to find their places elsewhere under the sun. Is this affecting Croatian workers, too?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, this has been stated by the MojPosao/MyJob portal, which investigated whether this phenomenon had reached Croatian workers yet. The survey was conducted on 800 employees and 26 employers, who asked if they had thought more about stepping down in the last year than before the coronavirus pandemic which altered life as we knew it completely.

Poor interpersonal relationships are the main reason for saying goodbye among Croatian workers...

As many as half of the respondents (51%) who had a job in the last year in that period resigned and changed their work environment. Only every third person (36%) had a secured second job at the time of them leaving, while two thirds of respondents left a secure job without having a "Plan B" at all. In the same period, as many as 88% of surveyed employers said they noticed an increased rate of Croatian workers leaving under their own steam. Men (54%) appeared to be more likely to resign than women (49%).

In addition, Croatian workers with a university degree (51%) are more prone to leaving their employers than those with a higher (46%) and secondary (48%) education, and respondents with less years of work experience. Namely, as many as 84% ​​of those with one year of work experience resigned in the last 12 months and only 18% of those with up to 10 years of work experience did the same.

They most often resigned because of bad interpersonal relationships, that is, because they felt that the company didn't appreciate them enough. In third place is too low a salary, followed by the bad impact of work on health and the impossibility of professional advancement, ie the acquisition of new knowledge and skills.

Job saturation and feelings of underestimation also have a role to play for Croatian workers...

On the other hand, employers are convinced that the main reason for the departure of their employees lies in low wages, feelings of underestimation/unappreciation and better offers from other employers (although this reason was stated by only 16% of Croatian workers).

Compared to the pre-pandemic period, employees were increasingly considering quitting due to feelings of underestimation/unappreciation and job saturation, while once the most important factors in deciding to leave a company such as receiving a better offer and low pay fell very much into the background. Women resigned to a slightly greater extent than men did citing poor interpersonal relationships, while men appear more likely to leave employers due to job saturation, large amounts of overtime and dissatisfaction with the company's management.

Observing the level of education, Croatian workers with a university degree leave more often because of burnout and poor management than those with higher and secondary education do. Although slightly more than half of the respondents (53%) stated that the pandemic didn't affect their decision to resign, a large number of people (47%) have just started thinking about a career change in the last two years, primarily due to the changed situation in companies (working conditions, interpersonal relationships, etc).

What does the future hold?

Half of the respondents (50%) intend to change jobs within the next year, and men (53%) are slightly more inclined to this decision than women (48%). One in two people think more about quitting now than they did two years ago (51%), a fifth (22%) do the same as before, while 27% of respondents today are less likely to juggle with that thought in these current circumstances.

Although in the past, Croatian workers typically didn't leave their employers solely due to dissatisfaction with their wages, most employees can be attracted by a new employer offering a higher income. In second place is the company's image (they would move to a company they believe is more caring for its employees), followed by a better financial benefits package, more flexible working hours, the chance to work from home, a better position within the company and a better non-financial benefits package.

The MojPosao portal concluded that The Great Resignation has not yet reached the proportions with Croatian workers as it has across the Atlantic in America, however, it is definitely visible that employees have begun to question their own values, the company's values ​​and think more about what is better for them than they did just two years ago.

Poor interpersonal relationships, a company that doesn’t value employee efforts, low pay, and poor working conditions are what will drive Croatian workers to reconsider their employment relationships.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Saturday, 12 February 2022

Could Croatian Minimum Wage Rise Under Pressure from Brussels?

February the 12th, 2022 - Could the Croatian minimum wage finally be forced into an increase under increasing pressure from the European Union in Brussels? Things might have to dramatically alter by June with yet another EU directive.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ana Blaskovic writes, a new directive on an adequate minimum wage across the European Union could come out of Brussels' ''kitchen'' by June and force the Croatian minumum wage upwards.

Although its pillar is the introduction of the institute of the minimum wage, which, unlike here in Croatia, is not yet available to all EU member states, the domestic labour market could be shaken by the additional demand it will bring, which is that the member state must actively strive to cover at least 70 to 80 percent of its workers with collective agreements.

The directive seeks to strengthen the European Union's idea of ​​social security and it has strong political support, as could be heard recently coming from the Belgian capital.

The topic is on the table of the convocation of the European Parliament in the continuation of this mandate and is being additionally pushed by the current President of France. On the eve of the April elections, President Emmanuel Macron's trump card is an ideal opportunity to strengthen France's leadership position in the European Union after the departure of the very well known and long-standing German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Although here in Croatia there are regular spears about the amount of the minimum wage that the Government adopts by decree (it isn't enough for workers and is always a question of competitiveness for employers), Croatia is among the 21 member states that already know and are quite well acquainted with this institute.

The exceptions are Denmark, Italy, Cyprus, Austria, Finland and Sweden. By raising the Croatian minimum wage to 3,750 kuna in 2022, Croatia has approached the goal set by the new EU directive, which is that the minimum wage must be 60 percent of the gross median and 50 percent of the average gross wage.

Therefore, the directive does not exclude the instrument of minimum wages, but provides a clearer calculation of how to calculate it and provides for a mechanism for testing the adequacy of its national level.

"We hoped that the directive would be passed during the Portuguese presidency, but some countries made a number of remarks, and Croatia doubted whether the goal of at least 70 percent of workers covered by collective agreements would be too difficult to achieve," said Kresimir Sever, the president of the Independent Croatian Trade Unions.

It's worth noting that the proposal of the European Commission is that it should be 70 percent of the workers covered by collective agreements, while the MEPs are proposing 80 percent in their amendments. "The aim is to ensure that every worker in the EU is paid for their work so that they can live with dignity, and nothing less than that. Croatia is close to the aforementioned minimum wage target, but hasn't yet reached it in gross terms. The problem in Croatia is low wages, so naturally the Croatian minimum wage is also low,'' the trade unionist added.

The trade unions themselves have a hard time estimating how many workers are actually covered by collective agreements in this country. Sever estimates that about 50 percent of employees in Croatia have a collective agreement in addition to an employment contract, but with the caveat that there is no data on "home" contracts.

In this context, it is important to note that the European Union as a whole is moving towards strengthening the role of trade unions, not only as workers' representatives, but also as bodies that collectively negotiate with employers.

It should be noted that the directive isn't binding, but it does work to further encourage member states to achieve a high percentage of coverage of their workers by collective agreements. The setting of benchmarks and modalities is still being negotiated, as are the timeframes within which each member state should achieve these goals.

Although in practice collective agreements are often perceived as clashes between employers and workers, their prevalence carries wide social consequences.

"The wide application of collective agreements is a way of coordinating wage policies that can ensure greater transparency and certainty of workers' incomes at the national or sectoral level, but also the stability of the workforce and the control of labour costs for employers, without harsh, generally universal legal interventions," said a senior research associate at the Institute for Social Research, Teo Matkovic.

He also mentioned that the legal instrument of the Croatian mininum wage has existed now for just over a decade, and it has been growing significantly for several years since. It is the opposite of collective agreements, the use of which has decreased significantly in the last 20 years or so.

"In this country, the coverage of collective agreements is modest, and the content is thin, especially outside of the public sector, so this coordination mechanism will need to be worked on if the adequacy of income in Croatia is to be relied on," explained Matkovic. He believes that a significantly larger area for collective bargaining, provided by the directive, "would strengthen the position of work across the EU, and in Croatia is likely to reduce emigration and encourage investment in skills and productivity."

For employers, the cost of labour is a calculation of competitiveness, especially emphasised in the circumstances of accelerating inflation and rising costs of raw materials. "Any increase in the Croatian minimum wage has significant consequences for employers, especially in the situation we're now witnessing when there's inflation, the rising cost of living and rising energy prices across the market.

If we take into account the consequences of the ongoing coronavirus crisis, it's clear that employers can hardly bear the new increase in costs, without these costs being accompanied by a reduction in the workload,'' they said from the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK), also pointed out that they're aware of the need to increase the living standards of citizens, "but it is necessary to apply a rational approach that will not lead to new layoffs."

For more, check out our politics section.

Monday, 31 January 2022

Around 50,000 Croatian Employees Among Lowest Paid in All of EU

January the 31st, 2022 - Around 50,000 Croatian employees are taking home among the lowest wages in the entire European Union (EU). These workers are primarily from the wood/wood processing, textile and leather industries.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Croatian minimum wage at this moment in time stands at 624 euros per month, gross. The highest in the EU is unsurprisingly 2,257 euros in Luxembourg, and in only four countries in the European Union do workers receive a lower minimum wage than here in Croatia. In Hungary, Romania, Latvia and Bulgaria, people take home the EU's lowest minimum wage of a mere 332 euros.

“I should be able to afford to buy some decent clothes, have some sort of normal social life life, such as being able to go to watch a film at the cinema or going to watch a match. What about holidays? It's all getting harder,'' said one person, who added that if they're havint to work all twelve months of the year and they can't even go on holiday, then they think it's beneath the honour of every person.

The average Croatian household spends more than two thousand kuna a month on food alone. Another 1.2 thousand kuna goes to housing costs and another 1.2 thousand to transportation. That means that for pure and simple survival, it costs 4.5 thousand kuna per month, and the minimum wage in Croatia at the moment is 3750 thousand kuna. That is without the latest price increases. Across the European Union, as trade unionists point out, the poverty indicator is the data on how much is spent on food, as reported by Dnevnik.hr.

"The share of food costs on average across the European Union stands at about 13 percent, in more developed European Union countries, it is below 10, and in Croatia more than it's more than 27 percent without any increase," said Kresimir Sever from the Independent Croatian Trade Union.

Compared to the Netherlands, the minimum wage is almost three times higher: 1,725 ​​euros, which is almost 13 thousand kuna per month. They spend less than 13 percent of their salaries on food, compared to more than 27 percent here in Croatia, and the price of electricity is a little less than 13 euro cents per kilowatt hour, which is even slightly lower than it costs in Croatia.

When asked if they think that the time will come when the minimum wage for Croatian employees stands at 13 thousand kuna, they answered: "I think so. When young people realise that they shouldn't run away but stay here and fight against those who do evil.'' Some naturally jaded Croatian employees have a different opinion: "I don't think so, I don't believe in fairy tales."

While the meat industry is announcing a rise in meat prices of up to 30 percent, the unions are asking the Croatian Government for all measures to help - they should lower VAT on energy, offer higher aid to the poorest among us, and lower excise duties on fuel, with the addition of more price caps. They also pointed out that chain price increases are on their way in the coming months, and the minimum will remain the same until next year.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

1.58 Million Officially Employed Croatian Residents at End of October 2021

November the 24th, 2021 - The end of October this year saw 1.58 million officially employed Croatian residents as the domestic economy continues to grow steadily as we emerge delicately from the global pandemic.

The rocky situation with the global economy has made sure that no country could easily escape the dire economic consequences that this truly unprecedented situation has caused, and countries like Croatia, which relies very heavily on tourism, took a very heavy blow indeed. It seems however, that things are on the up.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, at the end of October this year, there were 1.58 million officially employed Croatian residents, which is 0.2 percent more than in September and two percent more than in October last year, while the registered unemployment rate in October stood at 7.2 percent, which is an increase by 0.2 percentage points on a monthly level, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS).

According to the CBS, there were 1,581,743 officially Croatian residents during the month of October, which is 3,599 or 0.2 percent more than at the end of September this year. At the annual level, the number of total employees in the country increased by two percent.

1,368,324 persons were employed within legal entities, which is 11,746 persons or 0.9 percent more than a month before. Compared to the same month last year, this growth was stronger and amounted to 1.8 percent.

According to the data that the CBS takes from the records of the Croatian Pension Insurance Institute, there were 194,810 employees in crafts and trades at the end of October, which is 8,165 or four percent less than in September 2021. At the annual level, the number of officially employed Croatian residents in crafts and trades was higher by four percent.

More detailed statistics on the number of employees in legal entities show an increase on a monthly basis in most activities, with the largest increase in the number of employees in the education sector, by 8.2 percent, to 121,331 persons.

For more on working in Croatia, and employment, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Import of Foreign Workers Hampered by Croatian Bureaucracy

November the 16th, 2021 - The import of foreign labour from outside the EEA into Croatia, typically from neighbouring countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, is proving cumbersome with the infamously slow and arduous Croatian bureaucracy.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Dario Knezevic writes, with the stil impaired liquidity due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, ''getting the staff'' and having a qualified workforce is still the biggest problem of the Croatian hospitality and catering industry, especially since wages in the sector are still low and workers prefer to choose other occupations or instead opt for emigration.

Importing workers is currently an inevitable solution as the situation grows more tense, but there are a lot of problems in this regard as well, because there is a long procedure for obtaining work permits for foreigners and Croatian bureaucracy is still running at a snail's pace, hampered by draconian laws and what often seem to be senseless rules.

The sector is still plagued by high tax burdens, and the biggest problems are being faced cafes and nightclubs who suffered tremendously during lockdowns, warned participants in the Zagreb Caterers' Forum, held on Friday and organised by the Zagreb Caterers' Association and the Independent Caterers' Association.

Cafes are on the brink of survival

"Coffee bars and nightclubs have had and continue to have a very hard time surviving, when they have little or no traffic, restaurants are doing a little better because they haven't been closed for as long as bars and clubs were, and their traffic drop is around 30 percent when compared to 2019. If we fail to make more money during the advent season, we will have a very harsh winter and the number of 1,100 closed restaurants in Zagreb could increase in relation to the very beginning of the pandemic,'' warned Zakline Troskot, president of the Independent Association of Caterers.

Officially, three requests were sent from the Forum of Caterers to the City of Zagreb. They're looking for resolutions to the problem of being allowed to operate as normal in open spaces and on outdoor terraces. They are also seeking the lowering the coefficient of utility fees for these companies from 10 down to 7, as well as more involvement from representatives of those in the hospitality and catering sector when it comes to decision-making.

They want the state to reintroduce economic assistance measures to keep jobs and reimburse fixed costs, speed up the tragic state of Croatian bureaucracy, ie the process of issuing work permits for non-EU foreigners and further tax relief, in order to ensure higher incomes of employees working in the hospitality sector.

Namely, with the exception of large employers, wages in tourism and catering are still low, and many employers don't have room for raises due to the coronavirus pandemic, and workers are leaving en masse. Quality foreign workers aren't easy to come by either.

As it has been shown that workers from neighbouring countries manage and fit in much better among foreign workers than from distant cultures, the emphasis is on the search for workers in Croatia's immediate region, but the issue is that these European countries are not EEA/EU member states. This means that the paperwork and red rape is even more of a hassle for would-be employers.

The president of the Croatian Tourism Union, Eduard Andric, revealed that his union is negotiating with the Macedonian union, in order to bring Macedonian seasonal workers in an organised manner with less paperwork and fuss. According to current interest, there are about 5,000 to 10,000 of them.

At the same time, the Macedonians are willing and interested in their employers to give them some preparatory training, whether someone comes to them or they come to Croatia a little earlier for some training.

''Because as much as Macedonians are willing to work, we've had situations where they didn't know things like the names of certain drinks, the names of certain dishes, and we'd have to really educate them to make it better,'' pointed out Andric, adding that workers from that country are more desirable to work in Croatia than, for example, Filipinos, as their culture and language are closer, and communication is therefore far easier.

He revealed that they are also talking to Slovenes about a model to employ their workers in this country during the summer, and for them to go to Slovenia in the winter, which has more developed winter tourism. And this will be worked on in cooperation with the Slovenian trade union.

For more, follow our business section.

Wednesday, 27 October 2021

Croatian Unemployment Rate Falls, Fixed-Term Contracts Dominate

October the 27th, 2021 - The Croatian unemployment rate is continuing to fall, particularly and apparently encouragingly among the youth. Fixed-term contracts currently dominate.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Jadranka Dozan writes, as of yesterday, there were 123,000 unemployed people regisered at the Croatian Employment Service (CES). When compared to the end of last month, this represents an increase of 3910 people, but on an annual basis, this number still indicates a decrease in the number of unemployed people in the country - compared to the end of last October, there are 21,000 fewer of them.

According to the latest monthly report, for September, the annual Croatian unemployment rate was almost a fifth (19 percent) or 28,340 lower. In year-on-year comparisons, the number of unemployed people in the age group of 20 to 24 decreased the most, by almost 30 percent, which brought its share in the total number of unemployed people in the country below ten percent.

There are more and more job ads...

The overall better picture of the domestic labour market compared to last year is evidenced, among other things, by the fact that as many as 44 percent more vacancies were registered in September this year (23.5 compared to 16.3 thousand).

Relatively speaking, the largest increase was recorded in Istria County, where the number of workers needed was twice as high as it was last September, in Split-Dalmatia County, 80 percent more employees were sought, Zagreb also recorded 73 percent more September searches for workers. More than 700 workers were sought for work abroad, which is 37 percent more than in the same month last year.

At the same time, slightly more than 21,400 people de-registered as unemployed last month (12 percent less than last September).

In 16,800 of them, the reason was the fact that they had found work, but more than 900 people ceased to have this status due to other forms of business activities, such as people who had started their own business (by registering a trade or company).

Of those who found employment, almost nine out of ten cases were fixed-term contracts, and almost half of new employees found work in education. Of the total number of those who found a job last month, 6,300 of them are from the group of people who have a higher education.

At the same time, more than 4,600 people were deleted from the unemployment register for other reasons, and in addition to leaving the world of work due to retirement or inclusion in regular schooling, about 1,500 people were ''deleted'' from the list due to non-compliance with legal provisions.

In more than half of the people in this group, the reason is that they aren't actively looking for a job. For 75 of them, the reason is refusing to look for or accept a job, and a further ten have refused to enroll in some form of education. Of the total number of unemployed people, the share of those who receive CES cash benefits has actually been declining for years. Currently, the benefit is received by a little more than 25 thousand people, or just a little more than every fifth unemployed person.

In the structure of those who are unemployed according to the level of education, it is noticeable that the share of highly educated people has been slightly growing this year as well, although at the end of September this year there were nominally 24,000 or almost 500 less such people in this situation than there were last year.

For more on the Croatian unemployment rate, the economy and working in Croatia, make sure to check out our business section.

Tuesday, 9 March 2021

EU Rules Might Force Better Croatian Working Conditions for Many

March the 9th, 2021 - About 40,000 Croatian citizens made a living from working on online platforms back in 2019, and such work should finally be regulated, Vecernji list writes on Monday. Could this result in better Croatian working conditions for thousands of people?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the European Commission (EC) launched the first phase of consultations with European social partners back during the middle of last week on how to improve the working conditions of people working through digital work platforms.

The start of that consultation coincided with a historic ruling in Milan in which Italian courts ordered four large food delivery companies to employ more than 60,000 delivery workers and pay more than 700 million euros in fines for failing to provide them with adequate working conditions.

Similar lawsuits have been filed in other European countries, including Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, and there are more and more judgments being handed out in which courts side with the workers, who to date have mostly been drivers and delivery people. France was the first in the EU to legally oblige companies that built their business empires through digital platforms to pay their workers who work through these platforms insurance in the event of an accident at work, but even in France their employment status is not fully defined.

Political action was launched from the very top of the EU to establish clearer rules for this proverbial game. The public consultation on the topic will last at least six weeks, during which employers' associations and trade unions will present their views "on the need and direction of possible EU action to improve working conditions through [online] platforms".

Many of these platforms are also available in Croatia and thousands of suppliers are engaged through them, and the EU-level move could lead to far better and more secure Croatian working conditions for those making a living in this way.

The Croatian Ministry of Labour also announced that the forthcoming amendment to the Labour Law will also apply to those who conduct their work through online platforms, and pointed out that Croatia will also look for a way to provide certain protection to people who work in this way, reports Vecernji list.

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Monday, 21 September 2020

What Does Introduction of European Minimum Wage Mean for Croatia?

September the 21st, 2020 - The European minimum wage is set to be introduced, but what does that mean for Croatia, the Croatian minimum wage and the country's employees?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 20th of September, 2020, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen recently announced the imminent adoption of common rules, known as the European minimum wage, to help EU member states set their minimum wage amounts.

''Wage dumping destroys the dignity of work, punishes enterprises who do pay decent wages and distorts fair competition on the single market. Everyone must have access to minimum wages through collective agreements or on the basis of legal minimum wages,'' von der Leyen stated.

Ensuring a fair minimum wage for all workers across the European Union is one of the priorities of Ursula von der Leyen, and the crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic has further strengthened the demands for the European Union's engagement in reducing growing wage gaps and poverty, writes tportal.

European Union countries have different approaches to regulating their respective minimum guaranteed wages. The minimum wage is prescribed by law in 21 countries of the European Union, and in six member states it is determined by collective agreements. Its amount varies considerably from country to country, depending on the country's development, living standards and social sensitivity. According to the latest Eurostat data, the gross minimum ranges from 312 euros in Bulgaria to 2,142 euros in Luxembourg, and Croatia is at the bottom of the European Union scale with 546 euros.

The European Commission's initiative is not to set a single minimum wage at EU level, known as the European minimum wage, or to change national minimum wage systems, but its main goal is to ensure that minimum wages are set at an appropriate level in order to protect all workers.

In early September, the second phase of advising European unions and employers on a fair minimum wage was completed. Based on the answers received, the European Commission will issue a proposal for a directive at the end of October with rules that will apply to all member states.

Ana Milicevic Pezelj, executive secretary for social dialogue and public policies of the Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Croatia (SSSH), who participated in the consultation, expects the Commission to accept the proposal of European trade unions to link the minimum wage to the average (medial) wage.

"The unions demand that the minimum wage be at least 60 percent of the median, or 50 percent of the average wage in a particular country," Milicevic Pezelj revealed to tportal.

According to that criteria, the Croatian minimum would be between 3,400 and 3,500 kuna net, so 150 to 250 kuna higher than it currently stands. It's worth recalling that Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic himself promised that by the end of his term, his government would raise the Croatian minimum wage to 4,250 kuna.

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Saturday, 12 September 2020

Top 10 Croatian Cities in Terms of Highest Enterprise Earnings

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 11th of September, 2020, last year, there were 63,598 enterprises in the top 10 Croatian cities with the highest average earnings, and they employed 498,387 employees.

Entrepreneurs from Zagreb, Porec and Rijeka made the largest consolidated net profit last year and are leading the list of 10 Croatian cities with the highest earnings, according to an analysis published by the Financial Agency (Fina). Among the top 10 Croatian cities according to the net profit criterion are Sveta Nedelja, Dubrovnik, Velika Gorica, Vukovar, Zadar, Varazdin and Rovinj.

Fina notes that compared to the ranking list from 2018, Split, Karlovac and Nasice dropped off the list, and the new ones on the ranking list are Sveta Nedelja, Zadar and Varazdin.

The consolidated net profit of entrepreneurs in the top 10 Croatian cities last year amounted to 23.5 billion kuna, while the consolidated net profit of all enterprises in Croatia stood at 31.3 billion kuna. Last year, there were 63,598 entrepreneurs in the above listed cities, and they, as stated, employed 498,387 workers.

The analysis of the data from these cities confirms the large concentration of business of enterprises, taxpayers of profit tax, in the 10 aforementioned cities, whose share is 46.7 percent in the number of enterprises 51.4 percent in the number of employees, 62.7 percent in total revenues, 66.7 percent in period profit, 51.9 percent in period loss and 75.1 percent in net profit.

The reason for that, as stated by Fina, is primarily due to the share of enterprises and businesses based/headquartered in the City of Zagreb, which is logical.

Zagreb-based enterprises, all 45,608 of them with their 372,776 employees, unsurprisingly realised the highest net profit, of 18.5 billion kuna, which is 59 percent of the net profit of all enterprises operating in the country.

They are followed by businesses from Istrian city of Porec who achieved a consolidated net profit of 706.1 million kuna back in 2019, and enterprises from Rijeka with a profit of 641.8 million kuna.

Enterprises from Sveta Nedjelja, who realised a net profit of 621.5 million kuna, are in fourth place on the list of the top 10 Croatian cities in terms of net profit, while enterprises down in Dubrovnik are in fifth place with a net profit of 597.6 million kuna.

Businesses from Velika Gorica near Zagreb are in sixth place with a net profit of 558.7 million kuna, enterprises from Vukovar are in seventh place with a net profit of 504.5 million kuna, and Zadar-based companies who realised a net profit of 497.1 million kuna last year are ranked in eighth place.

At the bottom of the list are the enterprises from the continental Croatian town of Varazdin with a net profit of 487.6 million kuna, taking ninth place, while companies from Rovinj, with net profits of 362.4 million kuna are in the tenth place.

According to Fina, HEP, Pliva and Hrvatski Telekom/Croatian Telecom (HT/CT) contributed the most to the good results of companies based in Zagreb, Valamar Riviera did the same in in Porec and Plodine did so in Rijeka.

Maba-Com, in bankruptcy, contributed the most to the results in Sveta Nedjelja, Adriatic luxury hotels did so in Dubrovnik, Lidl Hrvatska did so in Velika Gorica, Prvo plinarsko drustvo did so in Vukovar, Tankerska plovidba did so in Zadar, Gumiimpex-GRP did so in Varazdin and Maistra did the same in Rovinj.

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