Government of Croatia
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The Government of the Republic of Croatia (Croatian: Vlada Republike Hrvatske), commonly abbreviated to Croatian Government (Croatian: Hrvatska Vlada), is the main executive branch of government in Croatia. It is led by the President of the Government (Croatian: Predsjednik Vlade), commonly abbreviated to premier (Croatian: premijer) or prime minister. The prime minister is nominated by the President of the Republic from among those candidates who enjoy majority support in the Croatian Parliament; the candidate is then chosen by the Parliament. There are 20 other government members, serving as deputy prime ministers, government ministers or both; they are chosen by the prime minister and confirmed by the Parliament (Sabor). The Government of the Republic of Croatia exercises its executive powers in conformity with the Croatian Constitution and legislation enacted by the Croatian Parliament. The current government is led by Prime Minister Zoran Milanović.
Following the Croatian–Hungarian Settlement of 1868, the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia and the Government of the Land (Croatian: Zemaljska Vlada)—headed by a crown-appointed ban—were established. This government existed until the Austria-Hungary breakup and the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes' creation in 1918. In 1939, the Banovina of Croatia was established and a head of the Banovina of Croatia was appointed by the crown, but no effective government was formed before World War II. In 1943, the ZAVNOH established an executive board to act as a new government. Communist Croatia, while a part of Communist Yugoslavia, had a separate government, with limited powers (excluding defence and foreign relations; this was similar to all the previous governmental forms). Following the first multi-party elections and the adoption of the present Constitution of Croatia in 1990, the present governmental form was adopted and Stjepan Mesić became the first person to hold the title of Prime Minister of Croatia (with Croatia as part of Yugoslavia), while Franjo Gregurić was the first prime minister of an independent Croatia. Since Communist rule's end, the Republic of Croatia has had twelve governments headed by ten different prime ministers. Eight governments have been formed by the Croatian Democratic Union, three by the Social Democratic Party of Croatia and one was a national unity government (formed during the Croatian War of Independence's peak).
The term Government of Croatia can have a number of different meanings. At its widest, it can refer collectively to the three traditional branches of government: the Executive branch, Legislative branch (the Parliament of Croatia or Sabor) and Judicial branch (the Judiciary of Croatia), as well as other parts of government and civil services which are part of the state of Croatia. The term is also used by the government itself, the press and colloquially to mean the executive branch alone, as that branch of the government is responsible for day-to-day governance of the nation; this sense is intended when it is said that a political party forms the Government.
The Government (Croatian: Vlada) of Croatia, the main executive power of the Croatian state, is headed by the prime minister (PM). The PM currently has four deputies (elected by the Croatian Parliament), three of whom also currently serve as government ministers; there are 17 other ministers, who are appointed by the prime minister with the approval of the Sabor (by majority vote). The government ministers are each in charge of a particular sector of activity such as Foreign Affairs. The prime minister and all the deputies form an inner cabinet, tasked with coordinating and supervising the work of government ministers on behalf of the PM; the inner cabinet also prepares materials for meetings of the full government cabinet (consisting of the inner cabinet and the remaining 16 ministers). The first deputy prime minister also discharges the duties of the prime minister when the latter is incapacitated or absent. The executive branch is responsible for proposing legislation and a budget, executing the laws and guiding the foreign and internal policies of the republic. The government's official residence is at the Banski dvori in Zagreb. Although the cabinet normally meets at the Banski dvori, occasionally its meetings are held elsewhere in the country.
The Government of the Republic of Croatia exercises its executive powers in conformity with the Croatian Constitution and legislation enacted by the Croatian Parliament, the Sabor (Croatian: Hrvatski sabor). Its structure, operational procedures and decision-making processes are defined by the Government of the Republic of Croatia Act and the Government Rules of Procedure. The Constitution mandates that the Government proposes legislation and other documents to the parliament, proposes the budget and gives financial reports, implements Acts and other decisions of the parliament, enacts any regulations required to implement the Acts, defines foreign and internal policies, directs and oversees the operation of state administration, promotes the economic development of the country, directs the activities and development of public services and performs other activities conforming to the provisions of the Constitution and applicable legislation. The Government also passes regulations and administrative acts and orders appointments and removals of appointed officials and civil servants within the scope of its powers. Furthermore, the Government makes rulings in cases of conflicts of jurisdiction between governmental institutions, responds to questions asked parliamentary majority and opposition representatives, prepares proposals of new legislation and other regulations, gives opinions on legislation and other regulations and adopts strategies for the economic and social development of the country.
The Government manages state property of the Republic of Croatia unless special legislation provides otherwise. It may appoint special committees to manage the property on its behalf; this process is implemented through appointed members of supervisory boards and managing boards of companies partially or wholly owned by the Republic of Croatia. (The Government also determines these appointees' salaries.) The Government maintains specialized bodies, agencies and offices—including the Legislation Office, the Public Relations Office and the Office for National Minorities—that are required by the Government Act of 1998, as well as committees to decide administrative matters. Various branches of government may establish joint services. There are further entities established by the government as companies designed to support the aims of the Government, such as the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development that strives to fund the reconstruction and development of the economy of Croatia. Local governments are separate from the central government; the latter maintains a State Administration Office in each county, under the Ministry of Administration.
The Government is responsible to the Croatian Parliament; the parliament may recall the Government as a whole or any member of the Government in particular by a simple majority vote following a request for a confidence vote by one fifth of the parliament members or by the prime minister. The prime minister and other members of the Government are jointly responsible for decisions passed by the Government and individually responsible for their respective portfolios (areas of responsibility). The President of the Republic appoints the prime minister, who must then secure a vote of confidence from the Croatian Parliament; the appointment is therefore counter-signed by the speaker of the parliament to signify this. Appointments of members of the Government are done by the prime minister with the approval of the Croatian Parliament (again signified via a counter-signature by the speaker of the parliament). The rules of procedure and regulations enacted by the Government must be published in Narodne Novine—the official gazette of Croatia—to be binding.
|Offices of the Croatian Government[A]|
|Office of the President of the Government of Croatia||Advisory, analytical and administrative services for the prime minister|
|Legislation Office||Furnishes opinions on the compliance of proposed legislation with the Constitution|
|Public Relations Office||Informs the public about the activities of the Government|
|Office for Protocol||Organisational and technical tasks required by the Government or the President of Croatia related to preparation for official visits of Croatian government officials abroad and foreign officials in Croatia; planning and control of expenditures related to these visits and other related tasks|
|General Administration Office of the Croatian Government and Parliament||Administrative, analytical, financial and other tasks required by the Government or Parliament of Croatia|
|Office for National Minorities||Implements policies for national minority rights|
|Office for Cooperation with NGOs||Cooperates with Non-governmental organisations (NGOs)|
|Office for Human Rights||Develops, implements and monitors human rights protection and promotion systems|
|Office for Internal Supervision||Internal audit services for Government bodies and offices (and other entities financed through the budget)|
|Office for Social Partnership||Supervises, coordinates and reports social partnership activities at the national and local levels through promotion and facilitation of discussion and coordination as well as mediating in disputes between workers, trade unions, private sector employers and the government|
|Office for Mine Action||Providing expert analyses and advice for demining|
|Office for Combating Narcotic Drug Abuse||Activities defined by the Intoxicating Drugs Abuse Act|
|Office for Gender Equality||Administrative tasks promoting gender equality|
|Central Procurement Office||Purchases for the central Government|
|Central State Offices[B]|
|Central State Administrative Office for e-Croatia||Develops information technology societal and eGovernment services|
|Central State Administrative Office for the Development Strategy and EU Fund Coordination||Expert and administrative services and monitoring for the Development Strategy of the Republic of Croatia, top level coordination of EU funds open to Croatia with other state bodies, non-governmental sector and the European Commission|
|State Administration Bodies[C]|
|Central Bureau of Statistics||Surveys, statistical analysis, and publication of survey data and analysis|
|State Office for Radiological and Nuclear Safety||Radiation safety, including nuclear safety|
|State Office for Metrology||Metrological administrative services, testing and supervision|
|State Intellectual Property Office||Protects intellectual property rights|
|State Inspector’s Office||Inspects implementation of legislation and regulations|
|Meteorological and Hydrological Service||Meteorological and hydrological services|
|National Protection and Rescue Directorate||Search and rescue and other emergency responses|
|State Geodetic Directorate||Geodetic survey, cartography (mapmaking), cadastral and photogrammetric services|
|Public Sector Bodies[D]|
|State Property Management Agency (AUDIO)||Manages state property|
|State Institute for Nature Protection||Nature conservation|
|Central Depository & Clearing Company||Manages the central depository of securities, clearing system and transaction settlement—coordinates scheduled executions of transactions between banks and maintains the registry of company stock ownership|
|Central Finance and Contracting Agency||Purchases using money from EU funded programmes: Budgeting, tendering, contracting, payments, accounting and financial reporting|
|Central Registry of Insured Persons (REGOS)||Tracks individuals and their funds for pensions|
|Croatian Institute for Health Insurance||Health insurance|
|Croatian Employment Service||Employment mediation, unemployment benefits, vocational guidance and training|
|Croatian Standards Institute||National standards body; promotes safety, quality, and interoperability of products, services and processes|
|Croatian Pension Insurance Institute||Pension insurance fund|
|Hydrographic Institute of the Republic of Croatia||Safety of water navigation and development of the maritime economy|
|Croatian Geodetic Institute||Surveying and geodesy: Plans and performs basic services, research and development, quality control, expert assistance, and maintains a geographic name database|
|Croatian Mine Action Centre||Demining surveys and planning, cleared area acceptance, mined area marking, quality assurance, demining research and development, and mine victim assistance|
|Croatian Information Documentation Referral Agency (HIDRA)||Information, documentation and referral services—provides government published materials to the Croatian State Archives and maintains an index of the published material|
|Croatian Accreditation Agency||Accredits inspectors to keep European and international standards|
|Croatian Academic and Research Network (CARNet)||Manages internet services, promotes online development, and educates|
|Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency (HANFA)||Maintains financial system stability and supervises trade transactions for legality|
|Croatian Agency for Small Business (HAMAG)||Develops the economy of Croatia via entrepreneurship, supports small and medium enterprises, guarantees entrepreneurial loans, and educates and develops an advisory service for small businesses|
|Fund for the Compensation of Expropriated Property||Compensates for property seized during Communist rule|
|Financial Agency (FINA)||Financial administrative and technical services|
|State Audit Office||Financial audits of the state and local governments (and other entities with majority government ownership)|
|State Agency for Deposit Insurance and Bank Rehabilitation||Bank deposit insurance|
|Human Rights Centre||Arranges for human rights-related public events, education, volunteer programmes and implementation of human rights projects|
|Croatian Competition Agency||Antitrust and merger control; monitors competition regarding agricultural and fisheries aid|
|Personal Data Protection Agency||Supervises personal data protection, reports personal data protection status recorded in the country and abroad, and maintains the central register of personal data|
|Croatian Environment Agency||Collects, integrates and processes environmental data; promotes sustainable development|
|Agency for Transactions and Mediation in Immovable Properties||Supervises the purchase and trading of real estate in Croatia, except where legislation defines the authority of another body; subsidizes real estate development|
Government meetings are public; however, the government may decide to close any part of its sessions (or entire sessions) to the public. The prime minister may authorise any deputy to represent the PM and otherwise take over any particular task assigned to the PM. The quorum for government sessions is a majority of government members. Most decisions are reached by a simple majority vote; a two-thirds majority vote is required for decisions about changes to the Croatian Constitution, uniting with other states or transferring any part of Croatian sovereignty to supranational organisations, changes to Croatian borders, dissolution of the parliament, or calling a referendum.
The inner or core cabinet (the prime minister and the PM's deputies) monitors and discusses the operation of the government, and may hold preliminary discussions on any matter performed by the government. The core cabinet may act as the government in emergencies when the government is unable to meet; however, its decisions must be verified at the next government session to remain in force. The Government Secretary coordinates agencies, offices and other services subordinated to the government.
Since 23 December 2011, the prime minister of the government has been Zoran Milanović. There are four deputy prime ministers: Vesna Pusić, Neven Mimica, Branko Grčić, and Milanka Opačić. All the deputy prime ministers are also government ministers except Neven Mimica, whose portfolio overlaps with those of the minister of the interior and the minister of foreign and European affairs. The government ministers are from the Social Democratic Party of Croatia (SDP), the Croatian People's Party - Liberal Democrats (HNS), the Istrian Democratic Assembly (IDS) and two are independent politicians.
Ban's Council (Croatian: Bansko Vijeće) of 1848–1850 was the first executive council established in Croatia. It acted as an administrative body governing Croatia within the Austrian Empire as a government. Following the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 and the subsequent Croatian–Hungarian Settlement of 1868, the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia was established, along with the Government of the Land (Croatian: Zemaljska Vlada) headed by a crown-appointed ban. The establishment was carried out during the administration of Ban Levin Rauch. This government form continued until the breakup of Austria-Hungary and creation of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in 1918. In total, 15 Bans acted as heads of the government in this period. The Cvetković–Maček Agreement was made in 1939; it established the Banovina of Croatia and appointed Ivan Šubašić as ban to head the Croatian government. Still, an effective government was not formed before the onset of World War II. In June 1943, the National Anti-Fascist Council of the People's Liberation of Croatia established an 11-member executive board to act as the new government of Croatia. Communist-ruled Croatia, a part of Yugoslavia, maintained its own government (of limited powers, excluding defence and foreign relations). The government was appointed by and responsible to the Sabor. During the Communist era, there were 14 governments of Croatia. The official name of the government was the Executive Council of the Sabor (Croatian: Izvršno vijeće Sabora). Following the parliamentary elections and the adoption of the present Constitution of Croatia in 1990, the present form of government was begun. On 30 May 1990, Stjepan Mesić became the first person to hold the title of Prime Minister of Croatia, and Franjo Gregurić was the first prime minister of an independent Croatia, as he held the office on 8 October 1991 when the declaration of independence came into effect.
List of governments of the Republic of Croatia
Since 30 May 1990 (the first multi-party parliamentary election held following the 45-year Communist rule), the Republic of Croatia has had a total of twelve governments headed by ten different prime ministers. The prime minister in the first government after the first multi-party election was Stjepan Mesić, who would later go on to become the President of Croatia. That government was formed by the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), as were seven other governments of Croatia. Three governments have been formed by the Social Democratic Party of Croatia (SDP), and one was a national unity government (representing a wide coalition of political parties) formed during the Croatian War of Independence's peak, between July 1991 and August 1992, with Franjo Gregurić as the prime minister.
- These are supporting offices of (services for) the cabinet; each is run by a Head of the Office.
- These support the central government as a whole in terms of strategy coordination and infrastructure (e-Croatia); each is headed by a State Secretary.
- In general, these supervise other government bodies such as the Public Sector Bodies (below).
- These are public sector organisations established for various tasks.
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