►The government’s decision on the establishment of a minimum wage in Cyprus, goes against the interests of the workers.
►The decision of the Council of Ministers is not only far from the expectations it had raised among the workers, but it is also one-sided and disproportionate to the interests of all workers.
Yet again, the government has chosen to side with unfair employment practices. Not only does its decision not put an end to the phenomena of cheap labour without rights and the undermining of collective labour agreements, but it supports those employers who exploit workers in the worst way possible.
With this decision, the government legalises the deregulation of labour relations in historic proportions. Setting a minimum wage without any reference whatsoever to working hours or an hourly wage, essentially ratifies and legitimises the current phenomena of working without a fixed schedule and extending working hours without overtime payment.
Moreover, the government’s decision undermines collective agreements as the decree does not state that they should take precedence over it, all the while leaving out of the scope of the minimum wage large groups of workers who are particularly vulnerable, such as workers in agriculture and animal husbandry, shipping, as well as domestic workers. This decision also legalises the employment of young people under 18 with a salary which is a whopping 25% lower than the minimum wage. At the same time, after 11 years of soaring prices and inflation, the decision to raise the minimum wage a meagre 16 euros, is a provocation to the workers.
PEO vows to continue and intensify its efforts to introduce comprehensive, institutional arrangements that will ensure the regulation of basic employment conditions, working hours, overtime compensation, holiday compensation, 13th salary and Cost of Living Allowance for the workers who are not covered by Collective Labour Agreements.
On 7 September 2022, PEO organises an extraordinary Pancyprian Conference, aiming at comprehensively analysing the government’s decisions and deciding PEO’s actions for the upcoming period.