Friday Jan 30, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
16o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Multi-bill approved at committee level, MPs to vote on measures at midnight

Parliament’s economic affairs committee approved late on Tuesday the multi-bill containing a series of structural reforms and which sets out fiscal measures worth 13.5 billion euros for the next two years. MPs will get the chance to vote on the package at around midnight on Wednesday in a ballot the government is expected to win narrowly.

The majority of deputies on the committee, whose make-up reflects the seats each party has in Parliament, approved the omnibus bill in principle and when voting on it article by article.

Some last minute adjustments were made to the legislation following requests by some lawmakers.

Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras accepted a call from PASOK MPs for reductions of pensions for heavily disable people not to be implemented. Stournaras said these particular savings would instead be made from pensioners earning more than 1,500 euro a month.

Stournaras also told the committee he would withdraw the word “voluntary” from an initiative designed to make Greek shipping firms contribute more to public revenues.

That contribution will have to be at least 140 million euros in the period from 2013 to 2016.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and his aides appear confident that the coalition government will also win the vote in Parliament’s plenary session on Wednesday.

Samaras and PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos spoke several times on Tuesday in a bid to ensure that the two “no” votes expected from the Socialist camp would not grow to four or five and that the coalition’s majority would not drop below 154 in the 300-seat House.

PASOK sources indicated that between 27 and 29 of the party’s MPs would vote against the measures. Costas Skandalidis, Theodoros Parastatidis and Markos Bolaris are anticipated defectors unlikely to change their minds. Still, Venizelos reportedly continued meetings with skeptical MPs.

In a meeting on Monday night, Democratic Left’s central committee agreed to vote “present” at the vote, though some MPs might waver from the party line and vote “yes” or “no.”

The omnibus bill lawmakers will be deciding on contains legislation that affects everything from the level of public sector pay to what products can be sold in supermarkets.

The legislation sees the retirement age rising from 65 to 67 pensions between 1,000 and 1,500 euros being cut by 5 percent, those between 1,500 and 2,000 by 10 percent, and those over 2,000 by 15 percent. Christmas, Easter and holiday payments will be scrapped. Lump sum payments for people who enter retirement will be cut by up to 83 percent, depending on the sector.

So-called “special salaries” in the civil service, which are paid to military personnel, security services, judges, doctors and judges will be cut by 2 to 30 percent. Judges will suffer the biggest cuts, with their salaries being slashed by up to 30 percent.

Employees at public enterprises, known as DEKOs, face similar wage cuts as they will be inducted into the across-the-board pay structure for the civil service. This means that salaries will fall by 30 to 35 percent and a ceiling of 1,900 euros per month will be set. There will also be pay reductions for ministry staff, local authority workers, employees at the National Intelligence Service and the country’s president. Civil servants will lose their Christmas, Easter and holiday payments.

The bill paves the way for 2,000 civil servants to be given this year notice of redundancy that allows them to receive 75 percent of their wages for a year before being fired if no other position can be found for them. A further 6,250 civil servants will be dismissed in the same way every three months next year. The limit on one hiring for every five workers that leave will remain in place until 2016.

In terms of labor regulations, the bill gives the government the right to set the minimum wage as of April next year, reduces the redundancy notice period and limits compensation for workers with more than 16 years of service.

The draft legislation also foresees the deregulation of 14 professions, which will affect lawyers and engineers, among others. The bill seeks to remove barriers in other sectors, such as allowing supermarkets to sell tobacco products. It also gives store owners the right to ask employees to work more flexible hours, which could pave the way for Sunday openings.

ekathimerini.com , Wednesday November 7, 2012 (11:18)  
Monastiraki restaurant fire prompts panic, restricted before spread
EU´s Schulz: Greece should follow EU line on Russia
Kotzias hails ´good compromise´ on Russia sanctions in Brussels
Karamanlis to meet Bakoyannis as New Democracy broods
Why Greece went left while Europe turns to right
Why has Greece chosen a far-left government at a time when discontented and frustrated voters elsewhere in Europe have turned to the far right? In northern Europe, the frustrated voters’ par...
Greek government´s signals very mixed, ECB´s Jazbec says
Greece’s new government is sending “very mixed signals” on its aid program and it’s too soon to say how the country will be treated in the European Central Bank’s bond- buying plan, ECB Gove...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Below-par Olympiakos succumbs to Efes
The winning streak of Olympiakos in the second group stage of the Euroleague ended on Thursday in Turkey, as Anadolu Efes outclassed the Reds in the second half to win 84-70. Olympiakos had ...
SOCCER
Xanthi upsets 10-man Panathinaikos in Cup
Xanthi dumped holder Panathinaikos out of the Greek Cup on Thursday, to leave Olympiakos as the big favorite for the tournament that will enter its quarterfinal phase with the draw on Friday...
Inside Sports
INTERVIEW
SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
“SYRIZA must realize that it is now the Greek government, not a party running an election campaign,” European Parliament President Martin Schulz, the first European official to visit Greece ...
COMMENTARY
Strange haste
The members of the new government must have a lot of confidence in themselves. Several days before announcing his program, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his cabinet have opened up a mult...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Monastiraki restaurant fire prompts panic, restricted before spread
2. Why Greece went left while Europe turns to right
3. EU´s Schulz: Greece should follow EU line on Russia
4. Greek government´s signals very mixed, ECB´s Jazbec says
5. Below-par Olympiakos succumbs to Efes
6. Xanthi upsets 10-man Panathinaikos in Cup
more news
Today
This Week
1. SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
2. Greek government's signals very mixed, ECB's Jazbec says
3. EU's Schulz: Greece should follow EU line on Russia
4. Why Greece went left while Europe turns to right
5. Monastiraki restaurant fire prompts panic, restricted before spread
6. Greece wants a debt break, but what about its poorer neighbors?
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
4. Greek Elections 2015: The day after | LIVE
5. Poll shows SYRIZA leading ND by 4 pct
6. SYRIZA's win will test institutions
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.