Public Sector Employees Want 15% Increase in Salaries

Total Croatia News

If there is money for new military fighter airplanes, then there is enough money for our increase, say the trade union leaders.

Before the start of negotiations with the government on the basic collective agreement (TKU) for public sector employees, their trade unions have signalled that they will demand a 15-percent increase in salaries. According to their calculations, that is how much the average salary in public services lags behind the rest of the economy, reports on October 4, 2017.

At a press conference, the trade unionists pointed out that the 15% increase would actually represent just a return of what they lost during the economic crisis. The union leaders are ready for tough negotiations with the government about the TKU terms, and they have also expressed their suspicion that the government was deliberately delaying the beginning of the negotiations in order to force them to be concluded in a short period.

Branimir Mihalinec, head of the Independent Union of Secondary School Employees, said that the TKU negotiations must conclude by the end of October. He added that they expected the government to schedule their beginning as soon as possible because there was little time for reconciliation about the regulation of the rights of employees, as well as their wages in the period from 2018 to 2020, which marks the end of the term of this government.

They reiterated that salaries of employees in public services were lagging behind more and more and that they have been frozen since 2009, with the exception of “small increases this year.”

The chief economist of Croatian Trade Unions Federation Matija Kroflin presented the findings of the European Confederation of Trade Unions which showed that the wages in Croatia, in comparison to the other transition countries, were lagging the most.

The trade union leaders do not even want to discuss whether there is enough money for the increase. The recent decision to raise privileged pensions above 5,000 kunas and to invest billions of kunas in military fighter aircraft is just another argument for them that there should be no problem for the government to accept their demands. As an example, Kroflin also noted that the average war veteran’s pension was now 87 percent of the average salary in Croatia or as much as 226 percent of the average “ordinary” pension.

Translated from


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