Hot debates on the salary draft law. Reshuffle in sight, sources reveal

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Political sources quoted by the national public broadcaster TVR unveiled that the Labour minister Ana Costea could be reshuffled due to the salary law initiated by the former Labour minister Rovana Plumb and currently discussed by the Ciolos Cabinet.

According to the above-mentioned sources, the prime minister is discontent that the Labour minister represents only the trade unions’ stance and doesn’t see the real budgetary issues. Costea might be reshuffled after Easter or she might resign.

The budgetary impact following the salary rises within the draft would be enormous if these increases did occur, with minister Costea claiming that these are demands filed by the trade unions, which must be observed.

A first reading of the salary draft law is scheduled on Wednesday’s Government sitting.

The pay of the budgetary staff mounts from 1 pc to 40 pc, thus a 20% increase on the average, dependent on the field, with the highest increase going to the social workers.

However, the Government conditions these public wage rises on the constraint of the minimum wage to RON 1,350 until 2020.

The Government aims at just applying a re-balancing and at cutting off the inequities in the system. The draft would be enforced only for one-year time.

The prime minister said on Monday that two drafts are up.

First we have the option of mobilizing the budgetary resources until 2020 and to see what we can do and to think about a law for 4 years starting from a certain level of the minimum wage. If we consider we cannot table a multiannual realist salary draft law, we might see what we can do the upcoming year with the known resources and to come up with this first stage of re-balancing, while next Government and Parliament might think to continue this approach,” Ciolos said at the meeting with the representatives of the Municipality Association in Romania.

The premier also explained that it had been a delay in presenting the salary draft law as his Cabinet considered that the previous Executive’s approach related to these pay rises was not realistic when it came to the budgetary resources.

On the other side, the trade unions slammed the Government’s proposal to accept the pay rises if the minimum wage is frozen to RON 1,350 for the next four years.

They launched an extremely toxic macro-economic pattern, a toxin that will destroy what is left from Romania. The pattern related to freezing the minimum wage nationwide and public pay rises is toxic for the Romanian economy, for today Romania’s current challenge is particularly the labour market. Employers cannot find proper qualified employees for their demands,” said Dumitru Costin, the leader of the National Trade Union Block (BNS).

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