Construction Industry Needs 10,000 More Workers

Total Croatia News

The lack of workers is hampering economic growth.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Construction and Physical Planning Predrag Štromar said that the Croatian construction industry was recovering from the crisis, while president of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts (HOK) Dragutin Ranogajec warned that the industry lacked 10,000 workers, reports N1 on October 26, 2017.

“At this point, there is a demand for more than 10,000 construction workers,” Ranogajec said. He added there was also a need for about 600 drivers, saying it was illogical that in Croatia, which has a special school for professional drivers, the law prevented people younger than 21 years of age from driving vehicles with carrying capacity over 7.5 tons. “There is a whole range of absurdities we need to change if we want to survive and take over new assignments,” said Ranogajec.

Responding to journalists’ questions about quotas for foreign workers, Ranogajec said it was ridiculous that a country with so many unemployed people does not have enough interested workers. “Our suggestion is to take away health insurance from those who refuse to work. If we do not start moving, we will be left without workers, and we will not be able to take new jobs. There will be a collapse,” Ranogajec warned.

He urged the government to be more engaged in vocational education so that young people could be trained for the labour market.

Deputy President of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK) Mirjana Čagalj emphasised that the HGK was committed to raising the quotas for foreign workers, but that the long-term solution to the problem of lack of workers was dual education.

Minister Štromar said it was difficult to solve the problem of the lack of workers. Asked by reporters whether there was a possibility of increasing foreign workers quotas, he answered he was in discussions with construction companies and chambers about future regulation of the issue. “Construction is recovering, and there are more and more building projects, which can be seen in both the GDP and the share of construction in it,” said Štromar.

According to him, in addition to the Pelješac and Čiovo bridges, there are many “huge projects” being prepared in the Ministry of Environmental Protection and the Croatian Waters public company, investments “measured in billions.”

“There are agglomerations, sewer systems, water purifiers, waterworks. Good times are ahead for the construction industry,” concluded Štromar.

Translated from N1.


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