The Slovenia Times

FinMin Urges Unionists to Accept Deal or Face Painful Cuts


The STA has found out unofficially that Mramor met unionists Branimir Štrukelj and Drago Ščernjavič on Monday to warn them that merely extending existing saving measures in the sector in 2015 will not be enough to bring Slovenia's budget deficit below 3% of GDP as demanded by the EU.

Before negotiations on cuts are to continue on Wednesday, Mramor allegedly presented the financial situation and room for manoeuvring in the public sector wage bill and other expenses in the sector for next year.

The minister expressed his expectation that an agreement on keeping the wage bill under control will be reached, since warnings are said to already be coming from Brussels that entail cuts to salaries and other allowances.

Thus, failure to strike a deal would leave the government with no other option but to lower pay with an emergency bill. Allegedly there has been talk of a 7% cut, which would probably prompt industrial action.

The unions have been insisting on only extending existing measures, which would however mean almost EUR 130m less in savings than planned by the government.

Mramor is said to have also proposed the option of a guarantee that salaries will start rising again based on GDP growth as of 2016 if the unions agree to have them cut now.

The minister is also expected to present the different scenarios to other public sector union representatives as talks are resumed on Wednesday.


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