600,000 People in Croatia Don’t Work and Aren’t Looking for Work?

Lauren Simmonds

Croatia’s paradoxical economic situation continues as the country continues to raise its quota to allow for the importation of foreign workers to do the jobs it seems that Croats simply don’t want to do.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 22nd of June, 2019, in the Republic of Croatia, as many as 600,000 residents over the age of 25 and younger than 65 aren’t working, nor are they even looking for work, according to a report from Vecernji list.

Most of them, as the aforementioned publication quoted, referring to the data of the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), are of an age when it’s typically more difficult to gain employment, which is over 50, but among them are nearly 190,000 younger people who could work without any issues, but remain completely economically inactive.

Contrary to what might one think at first sight with an issue such as this, among this group there aren’t just people with less of an education, but a large number of highly educated men and women. Interestingly, there are more highly educated women in this group of economically inactive citizens than there are men.

It isn’t possible to accurarely assess in which age group these highly educated economically inactive citizens are in, and there’s a chance that a decent number of them are actually retired, but the fact remains that in Croatia, as many as 204,000 highly educated people aren’t employed, nor are they searching for work. There are almost 97,000 men and 107,000 women in this group, Večernji list pointed out.

Such is the level of disinterest for work among Croatia’s inhabitants, that it would only be natural to come to the conclusion that this is a problem of the rent economy or about the grey economy in Croatia.

Otherwise, it is completely illogical that there are so many people in the country who just don’t want to work, so it can be concluded that they must be making their money in some way or another, or they’ve simply not reported their departure from Croatia and are currently working abroad, and these statistics simply refer to them as being present in Croatia, when they may not be at all.

On the other hand, there are about 200,000 less educated Croats who haven’t even completed their primary school education, and are likely to be living off the social system because their qualifications can’t gain them adequate employment. However, in this group, there is huge potential for auxiliary workers in tourism and construction, two sectors which lack the most workers of all in Croatia at this moment in time.

While 600,000 people in Croatia apparently don’t want to work, or even look for work, the country is continuing to import nearly 70,000 foreign workers to deal with the strain on the Croatian labour market.

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