National Minimum Wage comes into effect

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The landmark National Minimum Wage of €940 per month and €885 for the first six months of employment became active on January 1 by the decree of Labour Minister Kyriacos Koushos.

Some 40,000 low-income employees are estimated to benefit from this unprecedented benchmark substantially.

The National Minimum Wage does not apply to jobs in shipping, domestic workers, farming and livestock.

Those receiving training for a degree or professional qualification are also excluded.

Where an employer provides food or accommodation, it will be possible by an agreement between the parties to deduct it from the cash amount — 15% for food and 10% for accommodation.

With 45 days’ notice, employees will be able to waive this part of the agreement.

Also, those who receive more favourable treatment through a customary contract or other decree are excluded.

If an employer has better benefits than those provided in the ministry decree, they will not be affected.

“I must say that there were significant differences between the employers’ side and the trade unions.

“But nevertheless, through discussions, we reached a point of agreement.

“I thank them for their cooperation and how they conducted the consultation,” Koushos said.

The first adjustment of the National Minimum Wage will take place on January 1, 2024, and, from there on, every two years based on specific criteria and decided on by a nine-member committee which includes trade unions.