Working permits for construction workers


Employers operating in the construction sector often have the need to employ workers from third countries, i.e. those workers who are not nationals of an EEA Member State or the Swiss Confederation. An employer who wants to employ a construction worker from a third country is obliged to obtain an appropriate working permit before the worker starts working, depending on the type of work that the worker will do, the duration of work and his education.


A residence and work permit is the most common form of permit for foreign workers issued for a period of one year, after which it can be extended. Before applying, the employer must request the implementation of the so-called labor market test at the Croatian Employment Service, all in order to determine that there is no worker on the Croatian labor market who would do jobs for which the employer intends to apply for a working permit. Exceptionally, for certain categories of workers in the construction sector it is not necessary to conduct a labor market test, such as mason, carpenter, concreter, construction element fitter, construction machinery operator, stonemason, crane operator, etc. The employer can submit a request for a working permit for these workers directly to the competent office of the Ministry of the Interior Affairs.


On the basis of intercompany transfer, third-country nationals may work in the Republic of Croatia and perform the duties of managers, experts or trainees and have an employment contract with a company, branch or representative office established in a third country and which company temporarily relocates them for professional purposes or for training to a company, branch or representative office with a business establishment in the Republic of Croatia that belongs to the same company or affiliated companies.


Highly qualified third-country nationals (e.g. civil engineers) can work for an employer in the Republic of Croatia on the basis of an EU blue card. This permit is issued with a validity period of up to two years and is renewable. Along with the application for the issuance of an EU blue card, the employer must enclose an employment contract for highly qualified jobs, proof of higher education and proof that the worker meets the requirements in accordance with special regulations on professional qualifications for the regulated profession stated in the employment contract. Also, the employment contract must indicate the gross annual salary in the amount that must not be less than 1.5 of the average gross annual salary according to the officially published data of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics.