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"Agreement on wage increase in civil service allows government to achieve social peace" (Mohamed Trabelsi)

Published the:  07/02/2019

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(TAP) - The government has ensured social peace through the agreement on wage increases in the civil service, Social Affairs Minister Mohamed Trabelsi told TAP, after the signing of the agreement on Thursday afternoon.

Trabelsi added that social peace is priceless, noting that the agreement was signed within the framework of the 5 + 5 Committee composed of ministerial and trade union delegations.

He said the two parties have reached the agreement after a consensus on the various contentious points, the main of which were submitted to Prime Minister Youssef Chahed and Secretary-General of the Tunisian General Labour Union (UGTT) Noureddine Taboubi, who endorsed it.

"The decision to increase wages was reached after a constructive dialogue, with the common will of the government and the UGTT to reach consensus.

Taking into account Tunisia’s commitment with previous agreements on keeping the wage bill under control, the government will work to solve its problems with its financial partners, as part of the commitment to social peace and national sovereignty," the minister pointed out.

He added that time has come to increase production and profitability of public institutions in order to meet the country’s economic challenges.

For his part, Monem Amira, Deputy Secretary-General of the UGTT in charge of the Civil Service said the agreement reached on the wage increase came after two general strikes and before the announcement of a third general strike on February 20 and 21 and is only a "restoration" of their purchasing power.

He announced that a second round of negotiations will be opened on the salary increase for the third tranche in favour of the civil service after agreement on the payment of the two tranches provided for in the agreement signed Thursday.

The first tranche of the increase will be calculated from December 2018 and the first part the second tranche will be paid in July 2019.

The second part will be paid in January 2020 and a new round of negotiations will be launched in July for the third tranche of the increase, Amira pointed out.

The government and the Tunisian General Labour Union, on Thursday evening, signed an agreement to increase public service salaries, which canceled the general strike scheduled for February 20 and 21