Croatia is attempting to revive employment with a two-year national plan that is expected to provide work for 150,000 people, with 178 million euros allocated for 2011 and 2012. The Croatian Prime Minister, Jadranka Kosor, explained that the measure is part of IPA collaboration programmes with the European Union and with a number of Ministries. At the end of December, unemployment in Croatia reached its highest level in the last five years, registering 18.7%, 2 percentage points higher than in the corresponding month of 2009. The two-year plan has 9 main strategic objectives and will see Croatia invest 61.6 million euros in the reconstruction of buildings damaged during the war, 27.4 million euros for the development of the islands, 23.2 million for programmes in the placement office, 22 million euros on initiatives supporting entrepreneurship and 20.5 million euros for employment for war veterans. The Italian Trade Commission in Zagreb says that the plan is aimed at resolving long-term unemployment issues, by increasing the number of jobs for women and young people and by improving the adaptation of workers to the needs of companies. Zagreb is also investing in tourism and has made 8 million euros available for tourism agencies and airlines, as part of the "Wings of Croatia" programme), with which it hopes to increase the number of tourists visiting the country. Croatia, which is drawing ever closer to EU membership, could obtain a date for the end of membership talks in April, and conclude the talks in June.
Source: Vecchio sito IPA