Finance Minister Zdravko Maric said on Wednesday that the meeting with public sector unionists had revolved around the dynamic of increasing their wages in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and the coronavirus crisis.
"We will put forward our proposal about the pace of increasing the base pay. We are aware of the efforts being made by healthcare professionals and police officers as well as by other employees, including those in the welfare services. Our proposal was not about any reduction of wages, but about the pace of their rise in the context of the current circumstances and about providing a reward for hard work, as much as possible," the minister said.
Maric said that the meeting held on Wednesday morning had been an opportunity for the government to inform the unions of the projections of economic growth and the state of public finance.
We are aware that all those projection models lack a key variable and that is vaccination and everything related to epidemiological developments, he added.
He said that it was the legitimate right of the unions to reject the government's proposal, but added that the dialogue would continue.
The payment of wages and pensions has not been brought into question in any moment, he underscored, adding that the government would do its best to make sure wages and pensions were paid.
As long as the current level of economic uncertainty due to the corona crisis persists, our idea is to additionally consider the dynamic of the rise in wages, and the government is not proposing any pay cuts, he said.