The Republic of Croatia is in a group of four European Union member states with a lower uncovered demand for workers when compared to one year earlier. The Croatian paradox of staff fighting over workers who either don’t exist or don’t want to work, while would-be staff complain about there being no jobs continues.
As Ana Blaskovic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 19th of March, 2019, the workforce problem is rapidly becoming one of the most burning issues not only here in Croatia but across the European Union. In the last quarter of last year, Croatia ranked among the four EU member states with a lower uncovered demand for workers than was recorded during the same period last year, Eurostat figures show.
At the Union level, as well as at its very core in which the euro currency wains, the rate of vacancies grew to 2.3 percent during the fourth quarter of 2018. Just for comparison, this rate, which shows uncovered demand for labour, was 2.1 percent in the previous quarter, and 2.2 percent in the Eurozone.
The availability of labour in the last year has become the top theme for domestic employers. While a few years ago this issue was only mentioned from time to time, in the last surveys answered by business owners, it emerged at the very top of the list. In Poslovni Dnevnik’s recent interview with AmCham, Andrea Doko Jelušić pointed out that when the last survey was taken, their members underlined this topic as the main constraining factor in 2018, while back in 2017, it was placed on the list for the first time ever.
Reflecting on the workforce as an inevitable issue of the competitiveness of the domestic economy, CNB/HNB Governor Boris Vujčić said on Monday that Croatia is specific in the EU because as many as 40 percent of working-age citizens don’t work. “When looking at the employment rate, Croatia is the second worst in the European Union after Greece, which means that everyone else has to work harder to maintain the same level of living standards,” said the governor.
The key to the mobilisation of this population, Vujčić believes, is to evaluate the positive changes in pension regulations which extend the working life. The EU and the Eurozone are currently experiencing the most problems with finding workers in the service sector, with the job vacancy rate standing at 2.6 percent. Industry and construction account for 2.1 percent in the EU, and 2 percent in the Eurozone. In Croatia, the vacancy rate in the fourth quarter fell to 1.4 percent, which was the lowest level in just over a year. The highest jump in labour demand for the same period last year was in the fourth quarter in the Czech Republic, Austria, Malta, and Germany.