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Part of the Ius Comparatum - Global Studies in Comparative Law book series (GSCL,volume 32)

Abstract

This paper investigates the legal framework for collective bargaining in the Republic of Croatia. The first part of the paper gives an overview of the legal sources for collective bargaining and collective agreements together with a deep analysis of the role of collective agreements in the labour law system in Croatia. The second part focuses on the trade union density in Croatia and the process of social dialogue and collective bargaining. Then the paper deals with the national collective bargaining model and globalization of the economy, with special attention of the state of facts in the period of the economic crisis. In the final part the authors give their final thoughts with some de lege ferenda suggestions.

This paper has been fully supported by the Croatian Science Foundation under the Project UIP-2014-09-9377 Flexicurity and New Forms of Employment (the Challenges Regarding the Modernization of Croatian Labour Law).

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Grgurev (2013), p. 99.

  2. 2.

    Ravnić (2004), p. 500.

  3. 3.

    Gotovac (2013), p. 129.

  4. 4.

    Act on Representativeness of Employers’ Organisations and Trade Union Organisations (Zakon o reprezentativnosti udruga poslodavaca i sindikata), Official Gazette of the Republic of Croatia (hereinafter: OG) No. 93/2014, 26/2015.

  5. 5.

    Labour Act (Zakon o radu), OG No. 93/2014, 127/2017.

  6. 6.

    Labour Act (Zakon o radu), OG No. 38/1995, 54/1995, 65/1995, 102/1998, 17/2001, 82/2001, 114/2003, 123/2003, 142/2003, 30/2004, 68/2005, 94/2009, 149/2009, Art. 185 (194) and Labour Act (Zakon o radu), OG No. 149/2009, 61/2011, Article 253.

  7. 7.

    The Independent Trade Unions of Croatia (Nezavisni hrvatski sindikati), Union of Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia (Savez samostalnih sindikata Hrvatske), Association of Croatian Trade Unions (Matica hrvatskih sindikata), Workers Trade Union Association of Croatia (Hrvatska udruga radničkih sindikata).

  8. 8.

    The Croatian Employers’ Association (Hrvatska udruga poslodavaca).

  9. 9.

    Potočnjak (2016), p. 105.

  10. 10.

    ILO Convention No. 87 concerning freedom of association and protection of right to organize (Konvencija br. 87 – Konvencija o slobodi udruživanja i zaštiti prava na organiziranje), Official Gazette of the Republic of Croatia – International Agreements No. 2/1994, 3/2000 (hereinafter: OG - IA).

  11. 11.

    ILO Convention No. 98 concerning the application of the principles of the right to organize and to bargain collectively (Konvencija br. 98 – Konvencija o primjeni načela prava na organiziranje i kolektivno pregovaranje), OG - IA No. 2/1994, 3/2000.

  12. 12.

    ILO Convention No. 154 concerning the Promotion of Collective Bargaining (1981). On ILO Conventions which the Republic of Croatia has ratified see Učur and Laleta (2007).

  13. 13.

    European Social Charter (Europska socijalna povelja), OG – IA No. 15/2002.

  14. 14.

    The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (2007/C 303/01).

  15. 15.

    Constitution of the Republic of Croatia (Ustav Republike Hrvatske), OG No. 56/1990, 135/1997, 113/2000, 28/2001, 76/2010, 5/2014.

  16. 16.

    Labour Act (Zakon o radu), OG No. 93/2014, 127/2017.

  17. 17.

    According to the case law of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia, a natural person may not initiate a procedure regarding restriction and prohibition of work of an association of trade unions. See Decision of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia No. VS, Gž-27/00 on 18 Oct 2000.

  18. 18.

    Police Act (Zakon o policiji) OG No. 34/2011, 130/2012, 89/2014, 151/2014, 33/2015, 121/2016, Article 40. Act on the Services in the Armed Forces (Zakon o službi u oružanim snagama) OG No. 73/2013, 75/2015, 50/2016, Article 15.

  19. 19.

    Official data of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics (2017); Criminal Act, OG No. 125/2011, 144/2012, 56/2015, 61/2015, 101/2017.

  20. 20.

    Anti-discrimination Act (Zakon o suzbijanju diskriminacije), OG No. 85/2008, 112/2012.

  21. 21.

    Examples of different regulation by a collective agreement in comparison to the LA are, for instance, the cumulative duration of all successive fixed-term employment contracts, including the first employment contract, that may not exceed three consecutive years, may be prolonged due to the objective grounds allowed by collective agreement (LA, Article 12(3)) or different regulation by collective agreements of the daily rest of at least 8 h instead of 10 h determined by LA (LA, Article 89) etc.

  22. 22.

    Gotovac (2013), p. 129.

  23. 23.

    Grgurev (2013), p. 101.

  24. 24.

    Weiss and Schmidt (2008), p. 185ff.

  25. 25.

    Grgurev and Rožman (2007), pp. 561–562.

  26. 26.

    A collective agreement may not be cancelled if it ceased to exist because of expiration of time on which it was concluded. See Decision of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia No. VSRH, Gzz-69/2004-2 on 23 Dec 2004.

  27. 27.

    Act on Obligations (Zakon o obveznim odnosima), OG No 35/2005, 41/2008, 125/2011, 78/2015.

  28. 28.

    Rožman (2017), p. 1024.

  29. 29.

    Nevertheless, the collective agreement in which only the parties to the agreement are named, without further elements, should be considered valid. See: Rožman (2017), p. 996.

  30. 30.

    Grgurev and Rožman (2007), pp. 560–561.

  31. 31.

    Rebac (2017), p. 37.

  32. 32.

    On the after-effect of the collective agreement see: Grgurev (2010), pp. 1081–1108.

  33. 33.

    Rožman (2017), p. 1001.

  34. 34.

    Bargaining process is the matter of practice, tradition, agreement between the parties and circumstances of each case. In Croatia, the bargaining parties often conclude protocol, i.e. rules that regulate the bargaining process (frequency of the meetings, right of the party to the consultations, way of informing the public etc.). Loc. cit.

  35. 35.

    Rožman (2017), pp. 1011–1012.

  36. 36.

    E.g. The Act on the Wages in Public Services determines the parties of the collective agreements in public services. Act on the Wages in Public Services (Zakon o plaćama u javnim službama), OG No. 27/2001, 39/2009.

  37. 37.

    Potočnjak (2016), p. 101.

  38. 38.

    Ordinance on the Procedure for Submitting and the Methods for Keeping Records of the Collective Agreements (Pravilnik o postupku dostave i načinu vođenja evidencije kolektivnih ugovora), OG No. 32/2015.

  39. 39.

    Ordinance on the Methods for Publishing Collective Agreements (Pravilnik o načinu objave kolektivnih ugovora), OG No. 146/2014.

  40. 40.

    Gotovac (2013), p. 177.

  41. 41.

    Data available at: http://narodne-novine.nn.hr/. Accessed 17 July 2017.

  42. 42.

    Bagić (2014), p. 7.

  43. 43.

    Gotovac (2013), p. 109.

  44. 44.

    Statistic data of the Economic and Social Council (2016).

  45. 45.

    Grgurev and Vukorepa (2015), pp. 392–393.

  46. 46.

    Ordinance on the Methods for Publishing Collective Agreements, Article 3.

  47. 47.

    Etui official page data.

  48. 48.

    Act on Criteria for Participation in Tripartite Bodies and Representativeness for Collective Bargaining (Zakon o kriterijima za sudjelovanje u tripartitnim tijelima i reprezentativnosti za kolektivno pregovaranje), OG No. 82/2012 and 88/2012.

  49. 49.

    Potočnjak (2016), p. 87.

  50. 50.

    On of the first mentioned collective agreements was the collective agreement of the Rijeka paper mills in 1886 detected as one modern collective agreement in that period. Kulušić (2006), p. 45.

  51. 51.

    Grgurev and Rožman (2007), pp. 558–559. See also: Grgurev (2003), pp. 273–287.

  52. 52.

    See Republic of Croatia Government Opinion (2017), p. 4.

  53. 53.

    See Gotovac (2007), pp. 597–648.

  54. 54.

    Ordinance on the method of electing works council (Pravilnik o postupku izbora radničkog vijeća), OG No. 3/2016.

  55. 55.

    Data given to the authors by the Ministry in charge of labour (2017), on 3 Nov 2017.

  56. 56.

    Grgurev (2013), p. 103.

  57. 57.

    Grgurev (2013), p. 99. The only case of an extension of collective agreement on a national level was the collective agreement on a minimum wage, in 1998.

  58. 58.

    To see more about Croatian labour law system in the period of the economic crisis please consult the EC grant project VP/2016/004/0026: CEELAB “Improving knowledge on the impact of Central and Eastern European social partners on competitive labour market reforms facing the global crisis”, partners: MGYOSZ-BusinessHungary—Hungary (project coordinator); University of Rijeka, Faculty of Law—Croatia; Hungarian public research university ELTE—Hungary; Association of Employers of Slovenia—Slovenia; Montenegrin Employers’ Association—Montenegro.

  59. 59.

    Trade union opinions on flexibilisation (2014).

  60. 60.

    See more in: Laleta (2018).

  61. 61.

    Decision on the Extension of the Application of a Collective Agreement for the Catering Industry (Odluka o proširenju primjene kolektivnoga ugovora ugostiteljstva), OG No 55/2015.

  62. 62.

    Croatian Employers’ Association - Association of the Catering Industry and Tourism (2017).

  63. 63.

    See Laleta and Križanović (2015), pp. 305–340.

  64. 64.

    Butković and Samardžija (2016), p. 37ff.

  65. 65.

    Those agencies cover around 80% of the market of those services in Croatia. Coordination for agency work and mediation in employment (2017).

  66. 66.

    Butković and Samardžija (2016), p. 37.

  67. 67.

    Grgurev and Vukorepa (2015), p. 408.

  68. 68.

    Ibid., p. 403.

  69. 69.

    Ibid., p. 393.

  70. 70.

    Data given by the Ministry of Labour and Pension System on 3 Nov 2017.

  71. 71.

    Bagić (2014), pp. 4–5.

  72. 72.

    Although some data may be used from the collective agreements data base run by the Union of Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia (Savez samostalnih sindikata Hrvatske) which together with some other trade unions and the Croatian Employers’ Association has run a project (ended in 2015) financed by the EU from the European Social Fund in line to have a proper data base on collective agreements in Croatia. In the data base there are 261 collective agreements with 239 company collective agreements (binding on a single employer) and just 12 sectoral or branch collective agreements. Data base on collective agreements in Croatia the Union of Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia (2017).

  73. 73.

    Bagić (2014) p. 6.

  74. 74.

    Grgurev (2013), p. 103.

  75. 75.

    Bagić (2014), p. 7.

  76. 76.

    Ibid., pp. 7–12.

  77. 77.

    European Works Councils Act (Zakon o europskim radničkim vijećima), OG No. 93/2014.

  78. 78.

    Smokvina (2016), pp. 92–102.

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Smokvina, V., Laleta, S. (2019). Croatia. In: Liukkunen, U. (eds) Collective Bargaining in Labour Law Regimes. Ius Comparatum - Global Studies in Comparative Law, vol 32. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-16977-0_6

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