ECONOMY

IMF insists on depriving workers of wage raises

The country’s creditors, and particularly the International Monetary Fund, are insisting on the abolition of salary raises that depend on the number of years of service, telling the Labor Ministry in ongoing negotiations that this constitutes a drawback for the country’s perceived competitiveness.

The recent IMF report on Greece’s fiscal picture maintains that the 10-percent additions to salaries that Greek law provides for every three-year period of service should be abolished and not just frozen, as they currently are, insisting on a salary that would be “clean” from any additional benefits or increases.

The final decision on this thorny issue will be made in early 2014, but the pressure exercised concerns the creation of a simple minimum salary without any additions, or, as a last concession, with additions of 5 percent for each three-year period.

The change to the current system, which provides for an increase of 58.61 euros per month for workers paid according to the minimum salary, coincides with the procedure for creating a new framework governing the minimum wage from April.