Prime Minister of Croatia

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Prime Minister of Croatia
Predsjednik Vlade Republike Hrvatske
Coat of arms of Croatia.svg
16 obljetnica vojnoredarstvene operacije Oluja 04082011 Zoran Milanovic 38.jpg
Incumbent
Zoran Milanović

since 23 December 2011
Appointer President of the Republic
Inaugural holder Stjepan Mesić
Formation 30 May 1990
Website www.vlada.hr
Coat of arms
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Croatia
Constitution
Foreign relations

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, officially the President of the Government of the Republic of Croatia (Croatian: Predsjednik Vlade Republike Hrvatske), is Croatia's head of government, and is the de facto most powerful and influential state officeholder in the Croatian system of government. Following the first-time establishment of the office in 1945, the 1990-2001 semi-presidential period is the only exception where the President of Croatia held de facto authority. In the formal Croatian order of precedence, however, the position of prime minister is the third highest state office, after the President of the Republic and the Speaker of the Parliament.

The Constitution of Croatia prescribes that the Parliament "supervises" the Government (Article 81) and that the President of the Republic "ensures the regular and balanced functioning and stability of government" (as a whole; Article 94), while the Government is introduced in Article 108.[1] Since 2000, the prime minister has had various added constitutional powers and is mentioned before the Government itself in the text of the Constitution, in Articles 87, 97, 99, 100, 101, 103, 104.[1] The current Prime Minister of Croatia is Zoran Milanović. The Government of Croatia meets in Banski dvori, a historical building located on the west side of St. Mark's Square in Zagreb.

Name[edit]

The official name of the office, literally translated, is "President of the Government" (Predsjednik Vlade), rather than "Prime Minister" (Prvi Ministar). When the office was first established in 1945, the name "President of the Government" was introduced. The name of the office was changed 8 years later with the Yugoslav constitutional reforms of 1953, into "President of the Executive Council" (Predsjednik Izvršnog Vijeća). After another round of constitutional reforms in 1990, the office was renamed back to its original 1945-1953 title of "President of the Government". For all periods, however, the term "Prime Minister" is ubiquitous in English-language usage.

History[edit]

The first Prime Minister of Croatia was Vladimir Bakarić, who assumed the position on 14 April 1945. The position was then, as it is today, the most powerful public office in the state (the only exception in that regard is the 1990-2000 semi-presidential period, during which the President was the most significant figure). In post-World War II Croatia, which was at the time a constituent republic of Yugoslavia, a single-party system was in place. During this time there were twelve heads of government, all from the ranks of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (KPJ), which was reformed and renamed into the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (SKJ) in 1952. The federal party was organized into six sub-organizations - the republic parties, one for each of the six federal republics. Croatian politicians and prime ministers of the period were members of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia through their membership in the League of Communists of Croatia (SKH), the Croatian part of the federal party (as was respectively the case with all Yugoslav politicians). The office remained the central post of Croatian politics in spite of the institution of a collective Presidency in 1974 (previously the mostly-nominal function of the head of state belonged to the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament, the Sabor).

After the constitutional amendments that allowed for multi-party elections in Croatia, the Parliament enacted amendments to the constitution (25 July) which eliminated socialist references and adopted new national symbols. The newly elected tricameral Parliament proceeded to change the Constitution of Croatia, and on 22 December 1990, this so-called "Christmas Constitution" fundamentally defined the Republic of Croatia and its governmental structure. Since the 1990 constitution Croatia was a semi-presidential republic, which meant the President of Croatia had broad executive powers, including naming the Prime Minister and dissolving the government. During this period, lasting until 2000/2001, Croatia had nine prime ministers. The first Prime Minister of Croatia since the 1990 constitutional reforms was Stjepan Mesić, assuming office on 30 May 1990.[2][3]

Croatia proclaimed independence from Yugoslavia on 25 June 1991 following the May 1991 independence referendum. However, the country then signed the July 1991 Brijuni Agreement in which it agreed to postpone the formal declaration of independence for three months. Meanwhile, the Croatian War of Independence ensued, and Franjo Gregurić was appointed to lead a Government of National Unity. In October the same year, Croatia formally declared independence, with Gregurić continuing on as the first prime minister of Croatia after the secession from Yugoslavia.

Following the January 2000 general election the winning centre-left coalition led by the Social Democratic Party amended the Constitution and effectively stripped the President of most of his executive powers, strengthening the role of the Parliament and the Prime Minister, turning Croatia into a parliamentary republic. The Prime Minister again (as before 1990) became the foremost post in Croatian politics.

List[edit]

      League of Communists of Yugoslavia       League of Communists of Croatia       Croatian Democratic Union       Social Democratic Party

No. Prime Minister Lifespan Term of office

Electoral
mandates
Party Notes
N/A No image.png Pavle Gregorić 1892–1989 7 March
1945
14 April
1945
Communist Party of Yugoslavia De facto prime minister. Pavle Gregorić was Minister for Croatia, temporary representative for Croatia in the Yugoslav federal government.
1 Vladimir Bakarić Vladimir Bakarić 1912–1983 14 April
1945
December
1953
Communist Party of Yugoslavia
(party renamed in 1952)
The first Croatian Head of Government.
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
(party renamed in 1952)
2 No image.png Jakov Blažević 1912–1996 December
1953
July
1962
League of Communists of Yugoslavia Longest term as Croatian head of government.
3 No image.png Zvonko Brkić 1912–1977 July
1962
June
1963
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
4 No image.png Mika Špiljak 1916–2007 June
1963
May
1967
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
5 Savka Dabčević-Kučar Savka Dabčević-Kučar 1923–2009 May
1967
May
1969
League of Communists of Yugoslavia Led the MASPOK movement during the Croatian Spring
6 No image.png Dragutin Haramija 1923–2012 May
1969
December
1971
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
7 No image.png Ivo Perišin 1925–2008 December
1971
April
1974
League of Communists of Yugoslavia Also at one time held the positions of Speaker of the Sabor of Croatia (Head of State), and Mayor of Split.
8 No image.png Jakov Sirotković 1922–2002 April
1974
9 May
1978
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
9 Petar Fleković Petar Fleković 9 May
1978
July
1980
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
10 No image.png Ante Marković 1924–2011 July
1980
20 November
1985
League of Communists of Yugoslavia Also at one time President of the Presidency of Croatia, and last Prime Minister of Yugoslavia. Led successful economic liberalization reforms that were terminated by the coming conflict.
11 Ema Derossi-Bjelajac Ema Derossi-Bjelajac 1926– 20 November
1985
10 May
1986
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
12 No image.png Antun Milović 1934–2008 10 May
1986
30 May
1990
League of Communists of Yugoslavia (until January 1990) The pan-Yugoslav League of Communists of Yugoslavia (SKJ) splintered in January 1990 into its republic member-parties, in Croatia the League of Communists of Croatia (soon to be reformed into the Social Democratic Party) seceded from the central party and instituted democratic elections.
League of Communists of Croatia
(from January 1990)
Following the 1990 parliamentary election and constitutional reforms
1
Stjepan Mesić Stjepan Mesić 1934– 30 May
1990
24 August
1990
Croatian Democratic Union At a later date held the office of President of Croatia, also served as the last President of the Presidency of Yugoslavia.
1990
2
Josip Manolić Josip Manolić 1920– 24 August
1990
17 July
1991
Croatian Democratic Union
 —
3
Franjo Gregurić Franjo Gregurić 1939– 17 July
1991
Croatian Democratic Union First Croatian prime minister after (and during) its secession from Yugoslavia. Led the joint "Government of National Unity", instituted due to the escalating conflict.
 —
4
Hrvoje Šarinić Hrvoje Šarinić 1935– 12 August
1992
3 April
1993
Croatian Democratic Union
1992
5
Nikica Valentić Nikica Valentić 1950– 3 April
1993
7 November
1995
Croatian Democratic Union
 —
6
Zlatko Mateša Zlatko Mateša 1949– 7 November
1995
27 January
2000
Croatian Democratic Union
1995
7
Ivica Račan Ivica Račan 1944–2007 27 January
2000
23 December
2003
Social Democratic Party First prime minister with expanded powers after the implementation of the parliamentary system in 2000, which restored the head-of-government as the most powerful political office in the country.
2000
8
Ivo Sanader Ivo Sanader 1953– 23 December
2003
6 July
2009
Croatian Democratic Union Longest term of a post-independence prime minister. Resigned, granting support to Jadranka Kosor as his successor. Indicted on charges of corruption and subsequently arrested in Austria; convicted and sentenced to a 10-year jail term in 2012.
2003, 2007
9
Jadranka Kosor Jadranka Kosor 1953– 6 July
2009
23 December
2011
Croatian Democratic Union Assumed office upon the resignation of Ivo Sanader, recommended for the office by the latter. First female prime minister.
 —
10
Zoran Milanović Zoran Milanović 1966– 23 December
2011
Incumbent Social Democratic Party Government conducted the successful European Union membership referendum.
2011

Living former Prime Ministers[edit]

Name Term Date of birth
Stjepan Mesić
1990
24 December 1934
Josip Manolić 1990–1991 22 March 1920
Franjo Gregurić 1991–1992 12 October 1939
Hrvoje Šarinić 1992–1993 17 February 1935
Nikica Valentić 1993–1995 10 December 1950
Zlatko Mateša 1995–2000 17 June 1949
Ivo Sanader 2003–2009 8 June 1953
Jadranka Kosor 2009–2011 1 July 1953

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "The Constitution of the Republic of Croatia (consolidated text)". Croatian Parliament. Retrieved 2011-02-16. 
  2. ^ "Chronology of Croatian governments" (in Croatian). Croatian Information-Documentation Referral Agency. Retrieved 2011-05-13. 
  3. ^ "Prethodne Vlade RH" [Former Governments of the Republic of Croatia] (in Croatian). Croatian Government. Retrieved 2010-12-13.