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PNP celebrates clearing JLP's unfulfilled wage negotiations

Published:Monday | January 26, 2015 | 1:37 PM

The People's National Party (PNP) administration says it has settled most salary-related obligations, amounting to $12 billion, it inherited from the previous Jamaica Labour Party administration.



Speaking to journalists this morning, finance minister, Dr Peter Phillips said this has paved the way for formal wage negotiations with public sector workers to begin on a clean slate.



He explains that some of the issues settled included the payments of reclassification amounts owed to workers in the health and education sectors, firemen and correctional officers.



Meanwhile, Dr Phillips says government negotiators have been instructed to approach the start of formal talks amicably.



He is cautioning public sector workers to temper their demands in light of requirements to keep the wage bill low.



The finance minister says although several unions have not submitted claims, he hopes that negotiations will conclude by the start of the next fiscal year on April 1.



Public sector workers have been under a wage freeze A public sector wage freeze has been in place since 2012 as part of Jamaica's attempts to meet conditions under the deal with the International Monetary Fund.



Jamaica's economic reform programme includes modernising the public sector to help reduce the wage bill from 10 per cent of GDP this fiscal year to nine per cent of GDP in the coming budget.



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