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Recognition of Professional Qualifications

Croatia's accession to the European Union on 1st July 2013 signalled the application of the provisions of the Act on Regulated Professions and Recognition of Foreign Professional Qualifications (Official Gazette, 124/2009, 45/201182/2015, 70/2019 and 47/2020) that regulate the question of recognition of foreign professional qualifications in the Republic of Croatia for the purpose of establishment and free provision of services on a temporary and occasional basis in the Republic of Croatia on the basis of foreign professional qualifications.

This Act stipulates that, starting from 1st July 2013, all those who want to provide services within a regulated profession in the Republic of Croatia (List of regulated professions in the Republic of Croatia – in Croatian), and have acquired their professional qualification abroad, have to contact the competent authority (professional associations (chambers) or competent ministries) which grants access to that regulated profession in the Republic of Croatia, and apply for the recognition of foreign professional qualifications.

In accordance with this Act, the National ENIC/NARIC Office was designated the Assistance centre for providing information on the recognition of professional qualifications.

Act on Regulated Professions and Recognition of Foreign Professional Qualifications has been harmonised with the Directive 2005/36/EC, which guarantees that persons who have acquired their professional qualifications in a Member State have access to the same profession and can pursue it in another Member State with the same rights as nationals. The aim of the Directive is to improve the rules of existing qualification recognition systems in light of experience, and at the same time preserve the principles and safeguards for the freedom of establishment built into those systems.

Basic concepts

 

Assistance centre

Assistance centre for providing information on the recognition of professional qualifications - National ENIC/NARIC Office of the Agency for Science and Higher Education, is responsible for providing citizens and contact points of other European Economic Area (EEA) Contracting States with:

  1. Information on the recognition of foreign professional qualifications in the Republic of Croatia – information about national legislation which governs the access to and pursuit of regulated professions, including social legislations and, if necessary, ethical rules
  2. Assistance in achieving rights arising from the Act on Regulated Professions and Recognition of Foreign Professional Qualifications
  3. Information on regulated professions and how to access them in other EEA Contracting State
  4. Information on the Database of regulated professions and the recognition of foreign professional qualifications in the Republic of Croatia.

At the request of the European Commission, the contact point is responsible for informing the Commission about the results of assistance given to interested parties.

Assistance administers the Database of regulated professions and the recognition of foreign professional qualifications in the Republic of Croatia, which consists of:

  1. Public part – list of regulated professions and professional associations (chambers) or competent ministries that grant access to regulated professions in the Republic of Croatia – bodies competent for providing information on the procedure and requirements for the recognition of foreign professional qualifications, as well as for issuing decisions on therecognition of foreign professional qualifications.
  2. Protected part – data about the procedures of recognition of foreign professional qualification in Croatia (available only to competent authorities).

 

European Professional Card (EPC)

From 18th January 2016, general care nurses, physiotherapists, pharmacists, real estate agents and mountain guides can pursue their professions in other EU countries more freely thanks to the European Professional Card (EPC). This card aims to ease the free movement of these mobile professionals by simplifying the procedure for getting their professional qualifications recognised in another EU country. The recognition decision will still be made in accordance with existing regulation, but the mechanism will be simplified through an electronic procedure. This system also has built-in safeguards which prevent its misuse: alert mechanism guarantees adequate protection of EU patients and consumers. EPC is not plastic card, but an electronic certificate issued via the first EU-wide fully online procedure for the recognition of qualifications. Depending on the practical experience of the functioning of the procedure, EPC might be extended to other professions in the future.

Additional information is available on the web site of the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and Small and Medium Enterprises.

Ordinance on issuing the European Professional Card (EPC)

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