Serbia needs about 30,000 craftsmen of different profiles, according to a calculation by the Serbian Chamber of Construction. Goran Rodic, from the Chamber, says that Serbia needs “elite craftsmen” in the constructions sector too which covers 50 different branches of industry.
“These include not only carpenters, steel fixers and bricklayers, but also people who work in electrical installations, mechanical installations and high technology technicians. If they leave to work abroad, we will not be able to maintain the existing systems,” Rodic told Tanjug news agency.
He states that these professions are sought after abroad and that about 100,000 people are currently able to find work in Western European countries.
“It is difficult to replace the quality workforce and we have people from Macedonia and Albania coming to work for us. The biggest problem is that there is a lack of technicians, machine operators and good managers,” said Rodic, saying that the solution lies in dual education and hiring younger workers as, he says, “the current workers are getting older, they are mostly over 50 years old and a generational change is needed”.
He also points out that, in Serbia, these professions can get a solid salary and that for some jobs, the daily income has risen to 100 euro. In job advertisements, the salaries offered range from 35,000 dinars up to 2,500 euro, and the difference depends on many factors: whether the job is permanent or only for a certain period during the project development, on the work experience, qualification and how well a person knows welding methods.
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For example, the recruitment website Infostud, had 180 carpentry jobs advertisements with an average of five candidates applying for the job per ad. The average salary offered was about 60,000 dinars, while in two ads the employer offered a salary from 2,500 to 3,000 euro.
Igor Simovic, a plumber in Belgrade, says that their salaries vary from 50,000 dinars (fixed amount) upwards, depending on how much they work; he also points out that there is never a shortage of work, but that many of his colleagues went abroad because the wages are much higher.
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