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Farmers Markets Strike All Over Croatia

Farmers markets all over Croatia went on strike on Monday as new fiscalization laws came into effect at midnight on 1 July. Traders at markets in Zagreb and on the Dalmatian coast were empty as fruit, vegetable and fish traders demanded the new law to be abolished.

“Today we strike, and on Tuesday we will sell fish how we have always been selling it, without a cash register and see what happens,” said one trader in the Dalmatian town of Sibenik.

From today (Monday) fish, fruit and vegetable traders on stalls at market places across the country have to install computerised cash registers, which are synced to the nation’s tax office, and begin issuing receipts and the new law has angered the Croatian Farmer’s Market Association

“We are one of the few countries in Europe with an open farmer’s market tradition, and we need to leave it in its natural state and let it be something that will be special and which our country will be identified for in Europe. There would not be one group of tourists who when visiting Zagreb do not visit the Dolac markets, that is something we need to keep and protect,” said the Association.

Pressure will now be on the Croatian government to react as the association says there are many complications surrounding the new law also. Installing a computerised cash register in the outdoors may pose a problem with snow, rain, extreme heat and other elements. Another problem is the fluctuation in prices. Bartering prices is something that is the life and soul of farmers markets, and imposing cash registers will affect that. Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic says that he supports the market traders and has urged Croatia’s Minister of Finance Slavko Linic to rethink the law through.

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