The project “Technical Support for the Integration of Third Country Nationals in Croatia” aims to support the Ministry of the Interior (MoI) of the Republic of Croatia in enhancing their capacity to oversee, coordinate, monitor the implementation of national policies and mechanisms for the integration of Third Country Nationals (TCNs) in Croatia. The project will contribute to streamlining and strengthening integration actions at national, regional and local level for TCNs in order to facilitate their integration in all aspects of society, labor market and education system.

In this context, the project will provide technical support for strengthening capacity of Ministry of Interior (MoI) to coordinate integration policies and programs and enabling MoI and relevant stakeholders to monitor and implement integration activities, through enhanced information management and legal framework.

In particular, the project aspires to deliver:

  • A Report on the national legal framework related to integration.
  • Stakeholder mapping and analysis at national, regional and local levels.
  • Proposal on the establishment of a functional multi-level policy coordination mechanism/model, incl. roadmap with concrete actions in the future.
  • Technical specification and SOPs for a set of tools for monitoring and evaluating integration policies and programs.
  • Technical specifications, SOPs, and financial plan for one stop shop model.
  • Solutions and options for the digital platform.
  • Capacity building trainings for the TCNs’ integration stakeholders and practitioners.
  • A hybrid workshop with aim of knowledge and experience exchange among all Member States on migrant integration topic. 

Assessing the current and future trends, the national authorities have recognised the need for putting a greater focus on Third Country Nationals (TCNs) and their residence, work and life in the Republic of Croatia as it gradually converts into a destination country.   

Duration: 13 July 2022 – 13 July 2024


EU logo
The project is funded by the European Union through the Technical Support Instrument and implemented by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in cooperation with the European Commission.


Project activities


Meetings with local stakeholders of TSI project in the region of  Istria 

5 - 7 April 2023, Istria — The 2nd regional and local stakeholder meetings were held in Istria region. The aim was to identify existing and potential stakeholders’ and understanding stakeholders’ interest in addressing local/regional challenges in the integration of third country nationals.
IOM project team, Mr. Ivan Piteša, Head of Office, and Ms. Martina Car, Project Coordinator conducted a meeting with regional and local government, and other different stakeholders covering NGO’s involvement and entrepreneurship.  
On 5 April 2023, IOM team held meeting with the Deputy Prefect of Istria County, Ms. Jessica Acquavita, in Pazin. Until now, Istria County have not thought of some initiatives at regional level related to the integration of TCN’s. This region is primarily engaging labour migrants in tourism and construction sector. Ms. Acquavita, shown a great support to the TSI project, emphasising that Istria County will consider incorporating migrants in their strategic documents for Istria County.
IOM team explained that project will develop recommendation for the legislative framework for the integration of third country national's at the national level, but the aim is to strengthen the regions and to empower them to develop their own strategies, and action plans.

Meeting with the Deputy Prefect of Istria County, Ms. Jessica Acquavita                                                                                             

IOM team have also met with Ms. Christina Vojić-Krajčar, Market Manager of the Istria Tourist Board on 5 April 2023 in Poreč. The tourist board was not a one of the primarly stakeholder that will be involved in the integration of third country nationals (TCN), but it was indirectly included in the supporting issueing residence and work permits for labour migrants in the form of financial support to the capacities of the Ministry of the Interior.  IOM team added that Tourist Board should also consider greater of coming of different types of migrants, such as digital nomads, and perhaps TCN retirees in the near future. 

  Meeting with Ms Christina Vojić-Kranjčar 


IOM team met with Deputy Mayor of City of Poreč, Mr. Elio Štefančić, and Ms. Morena Mičetić Fabić, Head of Department of Economy and EU funds at City of Poreč on 5 April 2023, in Poreč.
It was agreed that TSI project, and the topic of the integration of TCNs’ would be further presented at the “Open days for entrepreneurs” that will be organized and running during the whole month of October 2023, in Poreč. 

                                                                        Meeting with the Deputy Mayor of City of Poreč, Mr. Elio Štifanić, and Head of Department  of Economy and EU funds at City of Poreč, Ms. Morena Mičetić Fabić, 5 April 2023             


Meetings were held with Ms. Helga Može, President of the Foundation for Partnership and Civil Society Development, Ms. Anamaria Škopac Pamić Head of Regional Coordinator of the County of Istria for European Programs and Funds", Ms. Jasna Jaklin Majetić, Director of Pula County Chamber, and the Employer Maistra Hospitality Group, Ms. Tina Turk Lupieri.
During the meetings few suggestions came out, such as: to furthur adapt the National strategy for civil organizations that is in the finalization phase and include the labour migrants as well as in the part of the related to the integration of TCNs’; to include TCN’s into future Implementation Plans for Istria region.
Consequently, challenges with the integration of TCN’s from the side of employers and TCNs’ were invesitagated. The major concern identified was the housing, that has a huge preassure on the employer, and integration tools for every day life that should be provided by some organizations at local level, and/or by NGO’s. 

                                                      Meeting with the President of the Foundation for Partnership and Civil Society Development, Ms. Helga Možé, 6 April 2023, Pula  

Meeting with the Director of HR, Maistra Hospitality Group, Ms. Tina Turk Lupieri, 6 April 2023, Rovinj

Meeting with the Head of Regional Coordinator of the County of Istria for European Programs  and Funds" and the Foundation for Partnership and Civil Society Development, Ms. Anamaria  Škopac Pamić, 7 April 2023


On 7 April 2023, IOM team held a meeting with the Mayor of City Pula, Mr. Filip Zoričić in Pula. Mayor of Pula confirmed its engagement in the project, providing the contact point for the project and confirming its attendance to the conference that will be held in Zagreb in September 2023 within the scope of the project.
Meeting with the Mayor of City of Pula, Mr. Filip Zoričić, 7 April 2023, Pula


Meeting with representatives of the Assosiations of Cities of Croatia

On 19 April 2023 in Zagreb meeting with representatives of the Assosiations of Cities of Croatia, Ms. Nives Kopajtich Škrlec, Office Coordinator, and Mr. Davor Runtić, Advisor, was held.
The Association of Cities in the Republic of Croatia is a national, and non-government organization, founded in 2002, with the objective of advocating for joint interests and encouraging cooperation among local governments.  IOM team, Mr. Ivan Piteša, Head of Office, and Ms. Martina Car, Project Coordinator, presented the project “Technical Support for the Integration of Third Country Nationals in Croatia"(TSI), and discussed with the representatives of Associations of Cities how their organization can support the project and be involved in its activities. It was agreed that Association as a great tool of gathering and sharing information’s among cities of Croatia can regularly share news related to project activities at their website, organize some webinars in cooperation with IOM on the topic of integration of third country nationals, and/or share questionnaire prepared by IOM with the purpose of collecting some data’s.     

                                                                       Meeting with the Coordinator of Association of Cities, Ms. Nives Kopajtich-Škrlec and  Advisor, Mr. Dario Runtić, 19 April 2023, Zagreb


Meetings with local stakeholders in the region of Eastern Slavonia

24 - 25 April 2023, Eastern Slavonia — 3rd regional and local stakeholders’ meetings were held in Eastern Slavonia, covering three counties: Brodsko-posavska, Osječko-baranjska and Vukovarsko-srijemska county. IOM team, Mr. Ivan Piteša, Head of Office, and Ms. Martina Car, Project Coordinator, met with Prefect of Brodsko-posavska county and the President of the Croatian County Association, Mr. Danijel Marušić, in Zagreb.

It was agreed that Croatian County Association will be at disposal and available to be used for any initiative by IOM through TSI project, such as: gathering e.g. mayor of municipalities of selected counties in order to organize webinar and disseminate and exchange information related to the integration of TCNs’. 
Meeting with the Prefect of Brodsko-posavska county and President of the  Communities of Counties, Mr. Danijel Marušić, 23 April 2023


IOM team met with the Director of Foundation “New tomorrow”, Mr. Davor Raletić in Osijek. Apart from the civil organizations in Osijek that are doing tremendous job in assisting refugees in their every day life, various Foundations, such as “New tomorrow” in Osijek and Vukovar are supporting Ukrainian refugees in their integration, as well. It was considered to include in the project stakeholders mapping relevant Foundations that could contribute to the development of migrants and their integration in the society, primarly migrant children, in the future as well. 

                                                                                Meeting with the Director of the Foundation “New Tomorrow” under the company  PPD in Vukovar and Zagreb, Mr. Davor Raletić, Osijek, 5 April 2023  


Meeting with the Deputy Mayor of City of Osijek, Ms. Jasenka Crnković, and the main Integration focal point, Mr. Romano Kristić was held in Osijek on 5 April 2023.
The City of Osijek is considered to be one of the best examples on how to prepare the local scene  for the coordination of integration of refugees, and migrants in general. The City of Osijek gave a great support to the local NGO’s, such as Centar for peace, nonviolance and human rights to lead the integration activities, while the City encouraged the development of Local Integration Plan, and New Regional Strategy for Ukraininas and development of information centre for Ukrainian refugees. 
City of Osijek expressed its interest to take part in the TSI project, and is opened to the think about adittional improvements in the integration of TCN’s, weather it would be to transfer it knowledge to the local authorities wih less knowledge or to establish extended information centre in the future for the TCNs’ that would be run by identified organization. 

Meeting with the Deputy Mayor of City of Osijek, Ms. Jasenka Crnković and  Integration contact point for City of Osijek, Mr. Romano Kristić, 24 April 2023

On 25 April 2023, IOM team met with Ms. Kristina Bilić, Director of the Administartive Department of the City of Vukovar, and her team, Ms. Andreja Matić, and Mr. Bojan Babić. 
City Vukovar is less experienced when it comes to the integration of TCNs’, however the topic was very interesting for them. IOM team took opportunity to share some insights from other counties or cities in Croatia to provide broader overview of current situation with TCNs’ in general, and their integration in Croatia, and also what are the predictions for the future in this area, and how can cities prepare themselves.
Ms. Bilić confirmed their invlovment in the project in the framework that is considered to be in their current scope, and they are willing to receive more information on this topic depanding how the project will be developing.

Meeting with the Director of Administrative Department of City of Vukovar, Ms. Kristina  Bilić, 25 April 2023, Vukovar


For the Eastern Slavonia, IOM team picked employer Bucher “Ravlić” to discuss integration of labour migrants working in their coorporation. The meeting was held on 26 April 2023 with HR Specialist, Ms. Sanela Kučar in Petrijevci. 
It was emphasised that labour migrants are mainly from Philippines, and that their integration is done by the employer. One of the challenges was that employer haven’t had enough knowledge on the needed integration tools for labour migrants (such as, to explain the migrants how to regulary clean the house that was provided by the employer). In adittion, they noticed that most of them are Catholics and that sermons in churches should be provided in english language.  In conclusion, employer ask better support on the whole process of recrutiment, accommodations for migrants and support in the integration activities.                                                                                                                          


On 27 April 2023, the meeting with Mr. Zoran Kovačević, Director of Osijek Chamber County, and Ms. Snježana Babić, Expert Associate was held in Osijek.
Mr. Kovačević shared beneficial information on the current situation in Osijek regarding unemployed, and jobs that are at the moment needed. It was indicated what are the most needed assistance for the employers: providing accelerated courses for Croatian language and basic communication as well as in some cases to manage pre-integration tools for labour migrants before their coming to Croatia.   

Meeting with the Director of Osijek County Chamber, Mr. Zoran Kovačević, and Senior Expert Associate, Ms. Snježana Babić, 26 April 2023


The last meeting was held with the Deputy Prefect od osijek-baranja county and the Leader of the Civil Protection of Osijek, Mr. Mato Lukić and Ms. Sarafina Zelić-Kos, Assistant of the Head of Department of osijek-baranja county, on 27 April 2023 in Osijek. 
Mr. Lukić was very satisfying with the project initiative, and confirmed that the interest of Osijek-Baranja county is to be prepared and to secure all the necessary integration tools, wheater it would be through legislation or information centre for a broader spectrum of TCNs.
The only challenge that was mentioned was the one of the financial nature. IOM team explained that integration of TCN’s should and will be supported by EU Funds, and various of organizations (NGO’s, IO’s, community, and local authorities), and this is to be decided by the regiobal and local government. 

                                                                    Meeting with the Deputy Prefect of Osječko-baranjska county, Mr. Mato Lukić, and Ms. Sarafina Zelić-Kos, 26 April 2023, Osijek