Employers and trade unions agree on new general collective labour agreement

Greek employer associations and the General Confederation of Employees of Greece (GSEE), the country’s largest umbrella trade union organisation, on Monday reached agreement on a new national general collective labour agreement for 2017.

The social partners were in unanimous agreement on the need to sign a new general collective agreement with the same terms as those in previous years, both to protect the rights arising from these and ensure the continued existence of a minimum legal framework for low-paid private-sector employees.

GSEE also highlighted the present government’s responsibility for failing to honour pre-election pledges to restore labour laws for collective bargaining, as well as promises to restore a minimum wage of 751 euros a month. As a result, said GSEE President Yiannis Panagopoulos, the negotiations for the new national general collective labour agreement did not set a minimum wage, while Monday’s agreement called for the extension of the existing labour agreement within the legal deadlines.

There would be provision, he added, to immediately begin negotiations on a minimum wage if the legal environment should improve.