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EACEA National Policies Platform: Youthwiki


3. Employment & Entrepreneurship

3.1 General context

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  1. Labour market situation in the country
  2. Main concepts

Labour market situation in the country

Youth employment


The activity rate of Croatian youth is among the lowest in Europe, and in 2015, it was 50.8% for young people aged 15-29. According to research results on a national representative sample of 2,000 young people in 2013 out of 508 young employees covered by the survey, the largest share of young people (38.0%) was employed in a small private enterprise or craft. Employment in a large private enterprise (26.5%) is almost equal to working in the public sector (23.7%). Employment in a family or a private company or craft is at modest levels and together includes less than tenth of youth. Regarding the type of contract signed by young people, half of all young people are employed on indefinite period full-time contracts (49.8%) and 41.7% on definite period full-time contracts, while only a modest part of them is employed for a certain (4.6%) or indefinite (2.8%) reduced working hours (i.e. part-time jobs). The average number of working hours indicates almost half of the young people (46.9%) who are doing average hours (40 hours a week), one third of them (33.5%) is working above the average and up to 50 hours a week, while those working more than 50 hours is 9.1%, and youth who work less than average is 11.4%. The earnings of young people are largely below the national average; 14.2% of young people receive monthly wages below 14.2%, 28.9% receive between HRK 2.501 and 3.500, 21.8% of them receive HRK 3.501-4.500, 17.1% of them receive HRK 4.501-5.400, and only 18.1% have wages around the national average.


Youth unemployment

Croatia holds the top position in Europe for youth unemployment at the time of writing this work, which has been the main social challenge for a long time alongside precarious work and the increasing number of young people who opted for (long) lasting leave abroad. Total unemployment of young people aged 15-29 in 2016 was 24.4%, while unemployment broken down into age subgroups was 52.0% for young people aged 15-19, 25.3% for young people aged 20-24, 18.8% for 25-29 years old, and in the subgroup of 20-29 years unemployment was 21.4%. There are 42.4% of young people with low education, 32.1% of upper secondary school and 20.9%of young people with a diploma. There are 15.3% long-term unemployed young people aged 15-29, while the EU average is 5.9% The share of youth outside the education system, training and the labour market (NEET) is also relatively high and in 2016 it was 16.9% for the 15-29 age group.

The results of the aforementioned research show that in the group of unemployed 62.9% of young people are supported by parents during the unemployment, 38.4% occasionally perform various jobs, 12.6% are supported by their employed spouse, 10.5% receive cash benefits from the Croatian Employment Service, 1.8% receive assistance from humanitarian organizations, and 0.8% have another source of unemployment support.


Main concepts