Employers who go into surpluses due to a temporary reduction in the turnover of the company, will have to pay the compensation to the employees themselves as they will not be covered by the surplus fund, said the Minister of Labor Zeta Aimilianidou.
Ms. Aimilianidou participated in the meeting of the working committee, during which the bill that extends until March 2021 the possibility of issuing decisions for taking emergency measures to deal with the pandemic, which expires on October 12, was discussed.
The bill is expected to be submitted to parliament next Friday and put to a vote under the urgency procedure.
The bill will make it possible to continue taking measures to support workers, the self-employed and businesses in dealing with the effects of the pandemic. Ms. Emilianidou informed that the ministry’s plans for October are already ready and their approval by the cabinet is expected within the week, so that they can be officially announced by the ministry.
The parliament will also be called upon to approve a bill that would allow the minister to amend specific provisions of the social security law regarding social security credits and contributions to various categories of workers, so that they can subsequently be entitled to unemployment benefits.
Zeta messages to employers
The minister sent strong messages during the meeting to employers who are laying off employees, meaningfully noting that “one day the pandemic will end” and that “the benefits that a company has from the Ministry of Labor are huge”.
He spoke of dozens of requests made before the Ministry of Labor for the employment of students or foreign workers, which in the context of the disincentives that the ministry will implement may not be accepted.
He stressed that there is a decision of the cabinet to apply disincentives to layoffs and salary cuts, noting that those who lay off staff due to temporary reduction in turnover, will not be entitled to go into surplus and will have to compensate employees themselves.
Regarding the incentives that the ministry can offer, Ms. Emilianidou said that for a good employer who respects the law and values the staff, his requests to the ministry can be processed and implemented in a shorter period of time.
He noted that the principle of incentives and disincentives has been agreed between the social partners and expressed the view that incentives and disincentives should be applied not only in the procedures of the Ministry of Labor but also in general in public procedures.
Following the suggestion of the MP of Ecologists George Perdikis, Ms. Aimilianidou noted that education in environmental issues can be included in the plans of AANAD.
The minister’s reports on incentives and disincentives were accepted with satisfaction by MPs who stated that so far the handling of the ministry is in the right direction.
Responding to a report by DISY MP Marios Mavridis that the exclusion from the new plans of the employers who proceeded with redundancies creates conditions of unequal competition, the minister said that “it would be surprising for a company to lay off staff and then subsidize it to hire new ones . “It would not be the right policy,” he said.
Reflection on changing criteria in the plans
Ms. Aimilianidou presented to the committee her concerns regarding the possibility of introducing new eligibility criteria in business support projects.
“I’m concerned about whether the plans should include profitability in relation to July and August,” he said. He referred to cases of companies that in July and August may have recorded high profits and may not have to be direct beneficiaries of support, because they will have a decrease in turnover in November for example.
“We will have to see if we can differentiate the support rate,” he said.
He wondered if business turnover should be taken into account for a longer period, while so far the plans have been to reduce turnover to a specific month, noting that this is an issue that needs to be discussed.By Maria Hampi