The Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts is an independent professional business organization of tradesmen and craftsmen, founded to promote, coordinate and represent the joint interests of tradesmanship and craftsmanship. The Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts represents tradesmen and craftsmen before the state and other institutions in Croatia and abroad. The members of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts are tradesmen and craftsmen who perform a trade on the territory of the Republic of Croatia. Membership in the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts is mandatory. County chambers are joined in the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts. To coordinate and address professional issues dealing with their respective branches of the economy, tradesmen and craftsmen organize into sections and guilds — professional organizations at the level of tradesmen associations, county chambers and the national level of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts. Forms of professional activity in tradesmen associations, county chambers and the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts are the following: – sections — at the level of tradesmen associations – guilds — at the level of county chambers – guilds at the level of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts The guilds of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts coordinate the activities of the respective guilds at the level of county chambers to solve and introduce specific issues of common interest at the Chamber level. Within guilds, it is possible to organize sections in order to coordinate and solve specific problems of individual trades and crafts belonging to a single guild (e.g. the textile, leather and fur section, the bakers’ section, the construction workers’ section, the photograph). Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the organization? Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts: The main areas of activitiy of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts are: promoting trades and crafts, representing tradesmen and craftsmen’s interests before state authorities, participating in designing economic policies, providing state authorities with opinions and suggestions when passing regulations concerning trades and crafts, founding commissions for apprentice and master’s exams, promoting tradesmen and craftsmen’s activities, founding of the arbitration council, keeping a register of tradesmen and craftsmen, keeping a register of apprenticeship contracts, assisting tradesmen and craftsmen in establishing and operating a trade/craft business, performing other tasks stipulated by the law and legislative documents of the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts. E.E: What’s the news for 2021 about new directions? Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts: Craftsmen will be paying fewer membership fees for the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts in the future. The adoption of the new legal framework is in the process of reforming and rationalizing the system. Also, through amendments to the law, master school will be regulated as an institution for the implementation of education and training programs for the practice of crafts. It will be founded by the Chamber and its purpose is to enable faster activation of young people in the labor market and to improve and modernize vocational education. E.E: What can you tell us about market trends? Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts: Although craftsmen were the most affected by the COVID-19 crisis, according to the Craft Register of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development on 31.7.2021, the number of crafts has increased by 556 crafts or 0.6% in the last month (June-July 2021). The number of crafts in the last year (July 2020-2021) has increased by 5,425 crafts or 6.1%. The total number of employees in crafts (craftsmen + workers) on July 31st 2021 compared to June 31st 2021 was by 4.891 employees or 2.4% higher. The number of tradesmen increased by 547 tradesmen or 0.6%, while the number of workers employed by tradesmen in the last month increased by 4.344 workers or 4%. The total number of employees in crafts (craftsmen + workers) on June 31st 2021 compared to July 31st 2020 was by 12.563 employees or 6.4% higher. In one year, the number of craftsmen increased by 5.418 tradesmen or 5.9%, while the number of workers employed by tradesmen increased by 7.145 workers or 6.7%. Also, The Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts is proud of the 1,056 people who passed master’s exams during this challenging year. E.E: What estimations do you have for 2021? Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts: It hasn’t been easy for craftsmen in last year and a half. The COVID-19 crisis caused great damage to craftsmanship, but the devastating earthquake that hit certain areas of Croatia showed that craftsmen were nevertheless the first on the field and ready to help their less fortunate fellow citizens at any time. The Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts is the only institution that represents the interests of all craftsmen and, as such, has no alternative. Only the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts understands the needs and challenges crafts are facing and protects them with arguments. The crisis caused by the pandemic has brought entirely new challenges to the business of craftsmen and we see an opportunity to mitigate its negative effects in the National recovery and Resistance Plan.