On 5 February 2020 the Construction workers trade union of Croatia (SGH) signed a new collective agreement with the China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC). The new CBA is valid from February 2020 to 31 July 2021.
On 15 January 2018 the CRBC won the bid to re-start the largest infrastructure in Croatia - the “Pelješac Bridge” project. The CRBC had outbid the Austrian giant Strabag and the Italian-Turkish consortium of Astaldi-Ictas.
The first collective bargaining agreement was signed on 22 March 2019 after lengthy negotiations. The key areas of the renewed collective agreement include higher bonuses, bringing basic tariffs in accordance with the national CBA and allows shop stewards and trade union representatives access to workers on all the sites at all times. There are also additional arrangements for a monitoring system.
Jasenka Vukšić, President of SGH stated, “Our negotiations with the CRBC management were based on the provisions of the national CBA in construction sector. The national CBA gives workers the right to higher salaries than the amount specified in the Law on the Minimum Wage. SGH is in the process of negotiations of the new national CBA in construction sector, where we demand wage increase and social security measures. This will directly impact CRBC workers.”
Coen van der Veer, Regional representative for BWI Europe, noted that with this renewed agreement, BWI’s affiliates in Croatia has shown that in a positive forward looking relationship with Chinese Multinational companies, working conditions can be sustainably improved through negotiations based on a clear agenda set by a representative union.