Croatian workers protest against shipyard sale

September 22, 2010 12:23


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ZAGREB, Croatia — About 3,000 workers are marching through the southern Croatian city of Split to protest the planned sale of their shipyard.

The European Union — which Croatia hopes to join by 2012 — has demanded that Zagreb stop heavily subsidizing its shipyards because the practice violates the bloc's competition rules. As a result, the Croatian government has put its six shipyards on sale.

Until the sale is completed, all shipyards, including the one in Split, cannot take new orders. Workers also fear wage cuts and layoffs.

If the sale fails, the shipyards face closures.

Zvonko Segvic, a union leader in Split, said Wednesday that "the EU has pushed us to the wall." He urged the government to find a way to protect the workers.

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