News Local Minimum wage proposal goes to House committee

Minimum wage proposal goes to House committee

The Citizens’ Alliance is proposing a monthly minimum wage of €1,125 and a minimum hourly rate of €8 for all employees.

The minimum monthly wage currently stands at €924 but applies only to specific professions.

In an announcement welcoming the start of discussion of its bill in the House Labour Committee on Tuesday, the party said the economic crisis had created huge social problems and a social divide between  private and public sector employees which continues to this day.

While pay in the public sector has to a great extent been restored to pre-2013 levels, private sector employees had not only paid a heavy price with unemployment but suffered more drastic pay cuts which in many cases remained in force.

Average monthly pay in the public sector is €1000 more than the average in the private sector. About one in three Cypriots employees earn less than €1000. And even though in 2017 the state had set a monthly income of €724 as the poverty threshold, 11% of employees receive monthly wages of between €500 and €700.

“This means that one in 10 Cypriots is paid below the poverty threshold. Cyprus is one of six EU countries that does not have a minimum wage set by law,” the party said.

It rejected concerns voiced in the House Labour Committee that a minimum wage would lead to higher unemployment. The same debate had been held in Germany, which introduced such legislation two years ago, and these concerns were refuted, it said.

“We believe the opposite will occur. The introduction of a minimum wage will contribute to reducing unemployment since it will remove the incentive from employers to exploit unemployment as they will no longer have the incentive to employ EU employees with very low wages as the minimum wage will apply to both,” it said.

According to the party the minimum wage should apply to all professions, except where there is a collective agreement, provided pay is above the minimum wage. This will reassure trade unions who fear collective bargaining may be undermined, the Citizens Alliance added.

“However collective agreements cover 25% of employees. And we must look out for the 75% of employees who live in miserable conditions and are exploited by some unscrupulous employers,” it concluded.

Read more

Top Stories

WHO pauses trial of hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 patients due to safety concerns

The World Health Organization has suspended testing the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 patients due to safety concerns, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus...

UK to reopen thousands of shops in easing of coronavirus lockdown

Britain will reopen thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres next month, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday, setting out...

Repeat positive cases ‘released’ three weeks from first diagnosis

The Health Ministry issued instructions on Friday on the release / ending of isolation for patients who tested positive to Covid-19 but are not...

Two new Covid cases in education and repatriations

Two new coronavirus cases were reported today by the health ministry, a drop from yesterday's eight, out of a total of 2128 tests, raising...

Minister: Back to school for 769 pupils with disabilities

  More than 760 children with disabilities who were told they could not go back to school when primary and lower secondary schools reopened last...


Traditional salads that will blow your mind away

This traditional salads will make you actually love salads! Cyprus may be famous for souvla and kleftiko but if you try the traditional salads with...

Honey Balls

As you stroll down Onasagorou street in the old city of Nicosia and suddenly feel the need for something sweet, follow the smell of...

Octopus with Oregano

Ingredients: (Serves 4) 1 kg octopus ½ tsp dry oregano Pepper 3 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice Preparation: Clean the octopus thoroughly under cold running water. Place the octopus...

Fish meatballs

In a bowl, mix the finely chopped onion and parsley. Boil the fish, cut into small pieces and add to the bowl. Add salt...