Government committed to national minimum wage

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President Nicos Anastasiades’ administration remains committed to introducing a national minimum wage before the end of its term, reaffirmed Labour Minister Zeta Emilianidou.

Following a meeting of the Labour Advisory Body set up by social partners to reach an agreement on the matter, Emilianidou said it had been pushed back due to the war in Ukraine and turbulence caused in the economy, “but it will be going ahead”.

According to Phileleftheros daily, the minister confirmed that the goal is to link the national minimum wage with the island’s mean wage.

The plan introduces a minimum wage that will gradually reach 60% of the mean wage. The mean (net) wage in Cyprus, according to Cystat data, was 1,573 in 2020.

A minimum wage applies to nine professions amounts to €870 and rises to €924 after six months of continuous employment.

This would mean that the national minimum wage would reach slightly above the €924 mark.

A Labour Ministry decree will introduce the minimum wage.

The Labour Minister has clarified the national minimum wage will not be applicable in the farming sector nor for home help.

There are shortages of labour faced in several sectors of the economy.

Emilianidou reportedly said that based on the results of surveys carried out by technical committees, the ministry intends to allow employers to bring in workers from third countries with temporary work permits.

Priority will be given to four- and five-star hotels that have been proven to have a problem.

The permits will be issued under conditions to protect existing staff, while a ceiling will be set on the number of workers from third countries employed at each unit.

Sources say that the ceiling is expected to be around 30% of a unit’s total staff.

The introduction of a national minimum wage was included in President Anastasiades’ pre-election commitments in 2018.