"The government and public sector unions agreed on Wednesday to discuss a base pay rise and a pay rise for 2023 before the end of this year," state agency Hina said, citing the leader of the national teachers' union, Sanja Sprem.
“It has been agreed to speed up negotiations so they could be finalised before the new 2023 budget,” Sprem told reporters after the meeting, adding that they are “expecting a concrete offer from the government at a meeting next Thursday.”
She said that the unions’ demands are in line with their basic collective agreement, and are “based on economic indicators.”
“The rise in inflation is not the only criterion. We have also taken in account the rise in salaries at companies, as they went up by 7.9 percent in the first six months of the year. When the public sector rise of 4 percent is divided for the same period, it amounts to only 0.7 percent. This shows that public sector wages have lagged behind already in the first half of the year,” Sprem explained the mathematics motivating her union’s demands.
Hina did not specify what those demands are.
She noted that while the living standards of public sector employees are increasingly becoming worse because of the inflation, the country’s budget revenues are increasing.
“We insisted that negotiations should not be dragged out, which the government representatives agreed on, so that public employees can get higher base salary already as of 1 October. The government is the single largest employer, and must show that it cares for all employees in the public sector,” Sprem said.