Croatia's road transport sector lacks an estimated 1,500 drivers for the maintenance of the existing services, and 3,000 drivers for the full functioning of transport timetables, it was said at a meeting of the transport group within the Employers' Association (HUP) in Zagreb on Tuesday.
Participants in the meeting said that the number of drivers emigrating from Croatia and those retiring is higher than the inflow of new workers in this sector.
Therefore, a growing lack of drivers is becoming a major challenge in providing services and making them available throughout the country, which is particularly affecting the bus transport system, according to the conclusions from the meeting.
The participants said that the authorities should first facilitate the hiring of local labour for this sector and then further regulate the import of workers from third countries.
The road transport sector should primarily be based on hiring local workforce while foreign workers should be imported to meet the needs during the peak periods, HUP said in a press release.
Drazen Divjak of HUP was quoted as saying that all European countries, including Croatia, are now coping with the shortage of road drivers.