Natko Vlahovic, CEO of Vlahovic Group, gave an inside view of Croatia’s business associations for the Lider business magazine, discussing the influence of these associations on the policy process.
Since Croatia joined the EU, many new and specialized business groups have emerged to represent the interests of specific industries, such as software exporters (CISEx), plant protection products manufacturers (CROCPA) or artificial intelligence (CroAI). These newcomers represent competition to the traditional players such as the Croatian Chamber of Economy (HGK), Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts (HOK) and the Croatian Employers’ Association (HUP).
Therefore, competition in the Croatian business associations market is increasing. More and more do we see several business associations getting involved around a single issue, but we rarely witness the creation of a common platform from these associations to advocate for common interests. For example, the Croatian Employers’ Association, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and AmCham Croatia have not worked together to advocate for tax cuts or oppose the introduction of new levies so far. Due to this, associations face inefficiencies while advocating for their interest.
Nevertheless, when any business association sits at the table with ministers, negotiations are certainly easier because the industry is represented by a single voice.
Read the full article in Croatian.