Salaries at railway freight carrier Cargo Slovakia (ZSSK Cargo) will increase by 2 percent in 2012, according to a new labour agreement signed on Wednesday, January 4, by representatives of Cargo and nine out of the 11 labour unions representing its workers.
"I'm glad that we can interrupt the trend of the past three years, when salaries in all three [state-owned] railway companies were frozen," said Transport Minister Ján Figeľ, who was present for the signing, referring to the fact that 2012 has seen the first salary rises on the railways since 2008. "Salary rises were introduced from January 1 and affect all employees," said ZSSK Cargo general director Pavol Ďuriník. The cost of the pay increase is €1.7 million, deductions included, and will be covered from ZSSK Cargo's own income. Based on the 2012 labour agreement, salaries will grow by 2 percent, a figure which amounts to at least €15 per month for all of Cargo’s 8,000 employees.
Representatives from the Federation of Locomotive Drivers (FS) rejected the signing as illegal and said their union plans to take the case to court, while preparing to go out on strike. "The right of a labour union organisation to hold negotiations was violated," said FS president Milan Hošták, as quoted by the TASR newswire. Along with the Federation of Train Crews, FS refused to sign the agreement.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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