Mr. Giannis Panagiotou expresses his optimism for a mutually acceptable agreement
watch video Photos: Philippos Christou
After today's meetings with trade unions and employers' organizations “we are even closer to the prospect of reaching an agreement on the issue of ATA”, said the Minister of Labor and Social Insurance Yiannis Panagiotou.
In statements, after separate meetings with trade unions and employers' organizations, at the Ministry of Labour, Mr. Panagiotou said that a joint meeting of the social partners is planned for the beginning of next week.
“I am even more optimistic that by then we will be able to reach a mutually acceptable agreement, which ensures labor peace, ensures regularity and stability and has a direct positive impact for the workers,” the Minister of Labor underlined.
I repeat that I believe that after our meetings today we are much closer than we were before to reaching an agreement,” he added.
Asked whether his proposal was in the form of either being rejected or accepted, the Labor Minister said “we are in a process, which we want to see a positive outcome”, adding that a compromise proposal was presented last week and views have been heard in relation to her.
He also stated that “positions that can help to reach a positive result, if they are mutually accepted – as any content of an agreement must be – can be helpful”, adding, however, that “to do this we must to be able to agree”.
“There are increased prospects, possibilities for us to reach an agreement”, he repeated.
May, in order to have a positive outcome.
The trade unions SEK, PEO, PASYDY and DEOK and the employers' organizations, KEVE and OEB are participating in the discussions with the Minister of Labour.
Besides, in a statement after the meeting, the General Secretary of PEO Sotiroula Charalambous said that according to the decision of the all-union meeting, they transferred to the Minister “the issues, which as a trade union movement we consider important from the outline of the proposal that he had presented to us last Friday , for which there are reservations from the trade union movement and for which we gave specific recommendations, which we believe help the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to lead us to what he said just a little while ago, to reach an agreement on the issue of ATA”.< /p>
“We believe there is scope and framework to move to reach an agreement,” he added.
Asked if the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has indicated that it will submit a new differentiated proposal to accept some of the points of the trade union movement, Mrs. Charalambous said that we are here with the will to have an agreement and those that we have conveyed to the Minister are not issues, the which can lead to no agreement”.
Invited to mention the disputed points so that the members of the trade unions would know, Mrs. Charalambous said from the discussions in the previous period “it was obvious where we give importance ” and the importance for us, as he said, “is that we have a framework in which the discussion takes place, which is the transitional agreement that has a specific content, a philosophy, which is the most important for the new transitional agreement”.< /p>
The General Secretary of the SEC Andreas Matsas said that by maintaining the principled positions, we believe that what is required has been created so that we hope that next week we will be able to reach a mutually acceptable settlement of the ATA issue with absolute commitment and respect for the signatures we have put in the framework of the transitional agreement”.
“We all recognize that a positive outcome in this matter will enable workers, who can access this right as a key component of collective bargaining agreements, to improve their wage performance by better managing the problems created by inflation “, he added.
He also mentioned that at the same time and equally important is that “it will give us the possibility, utilizing the institutional framework of the social dialogue, to create the conditions that will lead to a positive outcome in relation with the enlargement and expansion of collective agreements, taking advantage of the framework set by the EU itself in order to be able to cover the entire labor market”.
Mr. Matsas said that they expect that next week they will be able to announce the positive outcome of all the work.
DEOK President Iosif Anastasiou said that the aim of the guilds is the conclusion of an agreement, which ensures the basic principles as set by the trade union movement, and the all-trade union meeting.
He stated that “there was a constructive discussion with the Minister” and “we consider that the issues, which are troubling and preoccupying the trade union movement, have been fully explained”.
Mr. Anastasiou said that next week there will be a meeting again of all the social partners and he added that “the framework that is established facilitates both sides to reach an agreement on this important issue taking into account the transitional agreement, which clearly defines the basic principles in what concerns the regulation of the ATA institution”.
Finally, PASYDY General Secretary Stratis Matthaiou said that they conveyed the decisions of the pan-union committee to the Minister, who “listened to them with great attention and interest”.< /p>
“We are very close to an agreement”, he said and added that since the time the discussion of the issue began he declared “optimistic that we will reach a conclusion”.
Mr. Matthaiou expressed the hope that next week to reach the issue of ATA.