Strike at Croatian shipyards

The Croatian shipyards Uljanik in Pula and 3 Maj in Rijeka are fighting to survive. They have been in financial difficulties for years and have already been saved from bankruptcy by state money. But this time the government is refusing to bail them out. 4,500 workers at the two locations are currently on strike because their salaries for July haven't been paid. Should Croatia save its shipyards?

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Novi list (HR) /

Government ignoring the social disaster

The government's refusal to help the shipyards is incomprehensible, Novi list writes:

“One can conclude from everything that's happened in recent days that the Plenković government has done nothing to find a solution to this problem. That's absurd when you consider that the government is still Uljanik's biggest shareholder. And the prime minister isn't the only one who's shirking responsibility. The president, who's allegedly very sensitive to the problems of the shipyards - not only because of her origins [she comes from the region around Rijeka], but also because she loves to lecture about economic revival - has gone off to Afghanistan just as a social disaster is looming on the horizon.”

Večernji list (HR) /

Workers' protest turns into popular uprising

The shipyard workers' strike in Uljanik could develop into a movement that costs the government more than taking out a new loan for the shipyard, Večernji list comments:

“The inhabitants of Pulas took to the streets to support the workers in Uljanik. Their chants and placards clearly show that the affair over the delays in paying out wages for July and the shipyard's potential insolvency has become far more than a purely economic problem. The demonstration turned into a kind of resistance movement in Istria against the government. ... The government should have foreseen that this spark could trigger a blaze and should have tried to resolve the problem before it turned into a popular uprising.”