President of the Government of the Republic of Croatia
Predsjednik Vlade Republike Hrvatske
Andrej Plenković
since 19 October 2016
Government of Croatia
Office of the President of the Government
TypeHead of Government
Member of
Reports toCroatian Parliament
SeatBanski Dvori, Trg sv. Marka 2,
Zagreb, Croatia
NominatorPresident of Croatia
AppointerCroatian Parliament
Term lengthAt the pleasure of the parliamentary majority. Parliamentary elections must be held no later than 60 days after the expiration of a full parliamentary term of 4 years, but an incumbent prime minister shall remain in office in a caretaker capacity until a new government is confirmed in Parliament and sworn in by its speaker.
Constituting instrumentConstitution of Croatia
Inaugural holderStjepan Mesić (after adoption of constitutional Amendment LXXIII)[2]
Josip Manolić (under current Constitution)
Formation25 July 1990 (by constitutional Amendment LXXIII)[3]
22 December 1990 (under current Constitution)
DeputyDeputy Prime Minister
(position held by one or more members of the government)
Salary55752 yearly[4]

The prime minister of Croatia, officially the president of the government of the Republic of Croatia (Croatian: Predsjednik / Predsjednica Vlade Republike Hrvatske), is Croatia's head of government, and is de facto the most powerful and influential state officeholder in the Croatian system of government. Following the first-time establishment of the office in 1945, the 1990–2000 semi-presidential period is the only exception where the president of Croatia held de facto executive authority. In the formal Croatian order of precedence, however, the position of prime minister is the third highest state office, after the president of the Republic and the speaker of the Parliament.

The Constitution of Croatia prescribes that "Parliament supervises the Government" (Article 81) and that "the President of the Republic ensures the regular and balanced functioning and stability of government" (as a whole; Article 94), while the Government is introduced in Article 108.[5] Since 2000, the prime minister has had various added constitutional powers and is mentioned before the Government itself in the text of the Constitution, in Articles 87, 97, 99, 100, 101, 103, 104.[5] The current prime minister of Croatia is Andrej Plenković. The Government of Croatia meets in Banski dvori, a historical building located on the west side of St. Mark's Square in Zagreb.


The official name of the office, literally translated, is "President of the Government" (Predsjednik / Predsjednica Vlade), rather than a literal translation of "Prime Minister" (Prvi Ministar). In Croatian, the shorter term Premijer / Premijerka (Premier) is commonly used as well.



The Royal Government of the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia (1868–1918) was headed by the Ban of Croatia (Viceroy), who represented the King.

The first head of government of Croatia as a constituent republic of Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia was Vladimir Bakarić, who assumed the position on 14 April 1945. The position was then the most powerful public office in the state in addition to the position of the Secretary of the League of Communists of Croatia, as a single-party system was in place. The head of government was renamed to the President of the Executive Council in 1952. Notably, Savka Dabčević-Kučar was the first woman (not only in Croatia, but in Europe) to hold an office equivalent to a head of government as Chairman of the Executive Council of the Socialist Republic of Croatia (1967–1969).

Transition to independence

After the constitutional amendments that allowed for multi-party elections in Croatia in 1990, the country was still a constituent republic of SFR Yugoslavia, the position of the President of the Executive Council of the Socialist Republic of Croatia was filled by Stjepan Mesić on 30 May 1990 (the 14th Executive Council).

The newly-elected Croatian Parliament enacted numerous amendments to the constitution on 25 July 1990. It eliminated socialist references and adopted new national symbols, while the Government of the Republic of Croatia was formally instituted by Amendment LXXIII.[6]

The Constitution of Croatia was subsequently also changed significantly on 22 December 1990, as the so-called "Christmas Constitution" fundamentally defined the Republic of Croatia and its governmental structure. From this point onwards, Croatia was a semi-presidential republic, which meant the president of Croatia had broad executive powers (further expanded with laws to a point of superpresidentialism), including the appointment and dismissal of the prime minister and other officials in the government.

Following the May 1991 independence referendum in which 93% of voters approved secession, Croatia formally proclaimed independence from Yugoslavia on 25 June 1991, with Josip Manolić continuing in the role of prime minister as head of government of an independent Croatia. However, the country then signed the July 1991 Brijuni Agreement in which it agreed to postpone further activities towards severing ties with Yugoslavia. Meanwhile, the Croatian War of Independence ensued, and Franjo Gregurić was appointed to lead a Government of National Unity. In October the same year, Croatia formally severed all remaining legal ties with the Yugoslav Federation.

Since independence

During the period between 1990 and the next constitutional amendments in late 2000, Croatia had seven prime ministers.[7][8]

Following the January 2000 general election the winning centre-left coalition led by the Social Democratic Party amended the Constitution and effectively stripped the President of most of his executive powers, strengthening the role of the Parliament and the prime minister, turning Croatia into a parliamentary republic. The prime minister again (as before 1990) became the foremost post in Croatian politics.

As of 2022 there have been twelve Prime Ministers who have chaired 14 governments since the first multi-party elections. Nine prime ministers were members of the Croatian Democratic Union during their terms of office, two were members of the Social Democratic Party and one was not a member of any political party. Since independence there has been one female prime minister (Jadranka Kosor).

List of prime ministers

No. Portrait Name
Election Term of office Party Cabinet Composition President
Term start Term end Duration
1 Stjepan Mesić
1990 30 May 1990 24 August 1990 86 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Mesić HDZ Franjo

2 Josip Manolić
24 August 1990[1] 25 June 1991 305 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Manolić HDZ

Croatia formally declared itself independent on 25 June 1991. After the declaration of independence, the position continued to be named the Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia.

No. Portrait Name
Election Term of office Party Cabinet Composition President
Term start Term end Duration
2 Josip Manolić
25 June 1991 17 July 1991 22 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Manolić HDZ Franjo

3 Franjo Gregurić
17 July 1991[2] 12 August 1992 1 year, 26 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Gregurić HDZ • SDP • HSLS • HNS • HKDS • HDS • SDSH • SSH
4 Hrvoje Šarinić
1992 12 August 1992[3] 3 April 1993 234 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Šarinić HDZ
5 Nikica Valentić
3 April 1993[4] 7 November 1995 2 years, 218 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Valentić From 3 April 1993 to 31 December 1994:
From 31 December 1994 to 7 November 1995:
6 Zlatko Mateša
1995 7 November 1995[5] 27 January 2000 4 years, 81 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Mateša HDZ

7 Ivica Račan
2000 27 January 2000[6] 23 December 2003 3 years, 330 days SDP
Social Democratic Party
Račan I SDP • HSLS • HNS • HSS • IDS • LS
Račan II SDP • HSS • HNS • Libra • LS
8 Ivo Sanader
2003 23 December 2003 6 July 2009 5 years, 195 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Sanader I HDZ • DC
2007 Sanader II HDZ • HSLS • HSS • SDSS
9 Jadranka Kosor
6 July 2009 23 December 2011 2 years, 170 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union

10 Zoran Milanović
2011 23 December 2011 22 January 2016 4 years, 30 days SDP
Social Democratic Party
Milanović SDP • HNS • IDS

11 Tihomir Orešković
2015 22 January 2016 19 October 2016 271 days Independent Orešković HDZ • MOST
12 Andrej Plenković
2016 19 October 2016 Incumbent 7 years, 208 days HDZ
Croatian Democratic Union
Plenković I From 19 October 2016 to 28 April 2017:
From 28 April to 9 June 2017:
From 9 June 2017 to 23 July 2020:

2020 Plenković II HDZ • SDSS
1.^ From 1990 until the constitutional changes enacted in 2000, which replaced a powerful semi-presidential system (de facto a superpresidential system) with an incomplete parliamentary system, the term of the Prime Minister legally began on the date on which he was appointed by the President of the Republic and not on the date when he received a vote of confidence in Parliament, as is the case since 2000.
2.^ Until 12 October 2010.

Spouses of prime ministers

Name Relation to Prime Minister
Milka Mesić (née Dudunić) wife of Prime Minister Stjepan Mesić
Marija Eker Manolić wife of Prime Minister Josip Manolić
Jozefina Gregurić (née Abramović) wife of Prime Minister Franjo Gregurić
Erika Šarinić wife of Prime Minister Hrvoje Šarinić
Antonela Valentić wife of Prime Minister Nikica Valentić
Sanja Gregurić-Mateša wife of Prime Minister Zlatko Mateša
Dijana Pleština wife of Prime Minister Ivica Račan
Mirjana Sanader (née Šarić) wife of Prime Minister Ivo Sanader
Jadranka Kosor divorced before becoming prime minister
Sanja Musić Milanović wife of Prime Minister Zoran Milanović
Sanja Dujmović Orešković wife of Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković
Ana Maslać Plenković wife of Prime Minister Andrej Plenković

See also


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2012.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link), Protocol and Liaison Service, United Nations.
  2. ^ "Odluka o proglašenju Amandmana LXIV. Do LXXV. Na Ustav Socijalističke Republike Hrvatske".
  3. ^ "Odluka o proglašenju Amandmana LXIV. Do LXXV. Na Ustav Socijalističke Republike Hrvatske".
  4. ^ Thomas, Mark. "Croatian political salaries - how much do Croatia's leading political figures earn - The Dubrovnik Times".
  5. ^ a b "The Constitution of the Republic of Croatia (consolidated text)". Croatian Parliament. Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 16 February 2011.
  6. ^ "Odluka o proglašenju Amandmana LXIV. Do LXXV. Na Ustav Socijalističke Republike Hrvatske".
  7. ^ "Chronology of Croatian governments" (in Croatian). Croatian Information-Documentation Referral Agency. Archived from the original on 2012-02-22. Retrieved 2011-05-13.
  8. ^ "Prethodne Vlade RH" [Former Governments of the Republic of Croatia] (in Croatian). Croatian Government. Archived from the original on 2011-11-23. Retrieved 2010-12-13.