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Trade unions unhappy with Slovakia’s development

THE TRADE Union Confederation (KOZ) leadership says that it's very dissatisfied with the long-term social and economic development of Slovakia, the TASR news wire reported.

"The positive growth in gross domestic product is still being inadequately redistributed in salaries and pensions," KOZ chairman Ivan Saktor told journalists.

According to Saktor, in EU terms, Slovakia is a country of low salaries and poverty-stricken employees.

"Real salaries have fallen by 9 percent and pensions by 17 percent since 1989," said Vladimír Mojš, KOZ vice-president for economic policy and social partnership.

KOZ was also critical of working conditions in Slovakia. According to Saktor, many workplaces are similar to those in the early 20th century. In addition, the system of 'dumping' salaries is a problem, and is especially being abused by foreign companies.

KOZ predicts typical pre-election developments in 2006, with the current government making only cosmetic changes with extra money. However, the actual level of quality will not improve.

"We want a change at last after this year's general election. The current government has viewed KOZ as an enemy from the very beginning of its electoral term," said Saktor.

Compiled by Beata Balogová from press reports
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