Respecting the will of the Croatian nation and all its citizens, resolutely expressed in free elections, the Republic of Croatia is formed and is developing as a sovereign and democratic state in which the equality, freedoms and rights of man and citizen are guaranteed and ensured, and their economic and cultural progress, and social welfare promoted.
Freedom, equal rights, national and gender equality, love of peace, social justice, respect of human rights, inviolability of ownership, conservation of nature and the human environment, the rule of law and a democratic multiparty system are the highest values of the constitutional order of the Republic of Croatia and form the basis for interpreting the Constitution.
The Republic of Croatia is a unitary, indivisible, democratic and social state. Power in the Republic of Croatia derives from the people and belongs to the people as a community of free and equal citizens.
Separation of powers
Government in the Republic of Croatia is organised on the principle of the separation of powers into:
- executive and
The principle of the separation of power includes levels of mutual co-operation and reciprocal control of the holder of power prescribed by the Constitution and law.
In the Republic of Croatia, laws must conform with the Constitution, whilst other rules and regulations must conform with the Constitution and law.
Everyone must abide by the Constitution and law, and respect the legal order of the Republic of Croatia.
The Croatian Parliament (Sabor) is the body of elected representatives of the people and is vested with the legislative power in the Republic of Croatia.
The Parliament also performs the function of control over the executive power.
Representatives in the Croatian Parliament are elected for a term of four years.
The Croatian Parliament can have no less than 100 and no more than 160 representatives, elected on the basis of direct universal and equal suffrage by secret ballot. The Croatian Parliament currently has 151 representatives.
Elections for representatives in the Croatian Parliament are held not later than 60 days after the expiry of a mandate or the dissolution of the Croatian Parliament. The Croatian Parliament is a one house Parliament, with the Chamber of Counties ceasing to exist on 28 March 2002.
The Croatian Parliament has a President and one or more Vice-Presidents.
The Croatian Parliament decides on the enactment and amendment of the Constitution, passes laws, adopts the state budget, decides on war and peace, passes acts which expresses the politics of the Croatian Parliament, decides on the strategy of national security and the strategy of Defence for the Republic of Croatia, carries out civil control of the armed forces and security services of the Republic of Croatia, calls referendums, carries out elections, appointments and relief of office in conformity with the Constitution and law, supervises the work of the Government of the Republic of Croatia and other holders of public powers responsible to the Croatian Parliament in conformity with the Constitution and law, grants amnesty for penal offences and conducts other affairs as specified by the Constitution.
1. The President of the Republic of Croatia
The President of the Republic of Croatia presents and represents the Republic of Croatia at home and abroad.
The President of the Republic cares for the regular and conformed operation, and stability of state power.
The President of the Republic is responsible for the defence of the independence and territorial integrity of the Republic of Croatia.
The President of the Republic is elected on the basis of direct universal and equal suffrage by secret ballot for a term of five years.
Nobody can be elected President of the Republic more than two times.
2. The Government of the Republic of Croatia
The Government of the Republic of Croatia exercises executive power in conformity with the Constitution and law, with the organisation, operation and decision making regulated by the Law on the Government of the Republic of Croatia and its rule of procedures.
The Government of the Republic of Croatia: proposes laws and other acts to the Croatian Parliament, proposes the state budget and final account, implements laws and other decisions of the Croatian Parliament, passes regulations for the implementation of laws, conducts foreign and internal politics, directs and controls the work of state administration, works on the economic growth of the country, directs the activities and expansion of public services, conducts other affairs as specified by the Constitution and law.
The Government is responsible to the Croatian Parliament.
The Government shall consist of the Prime Minister, one or more Deputy Prime Ministers and Ministers.
Pursuant to the decision of the Croatian Sabor which expressed confidence in the Government of the Republic of Croatia, the President of the Republic shall issue an order appointing the Prime Minister, counter-signed by the Chairman of the Croatian Sabor; the order appointing the members of the Government shall be issued by the Prime Minister and counter-signed by the Chairman of the Croatian Sabor.
The judicial power in Croatia is exercised by the courts. It is independent, and the courts rule based on the constitution and the laws.
The Supreme Court is the highest court and ensures the uniform application of laws and equal justice to all. Its president is elected and relieved of duty by the Croatian Parliament at the proposal of the president of the republic.
The law determines the court procedures, sets up courts, and defines their jurisdiction, structure and organization.
The State Judiciary Council in accordance with the constitution and the law appoints, relieves of duty and decides on the disciplinary responsibility of judges. It has 11 members from the ranks of distinguished judges, lawyers and university professors of legal science. However, the majority of members need to be judges. Court presidents cannot be elected as members. The jurisdiction and work of the State Judiciary Council is determined by the law.
The formation of political parties is free.
The internal organisation of political parties must conform to the basic constitutional democratic principles.
Parties must publicly account for the origin of its funds and properties.
Political parties who with their program or violent activity tend towards undermining the democratic constitutional order or threaten the survival of the Republic of Croatia are non-constitutional. The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia decides on the non-constitutionality of a political party.
The position and financing of political parties is regulated by law.
The first Constitution of the Republic of Croatia was proclaimed on 22 December 1990.