Cyta unions to re­spond to pri­vati­sa­tions plan this week

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

Trade unions at state-owned tele­coms provider Cyta met on Tues­day to re­view the gov­ern­ment’s pro­posal over the sta­tus and the rights of the em­ploy­ees af­ter the pri­vati­sa­tion of the semi-gov­ern­ment or­gan­i­sa­tion. The unions said that they would re­spond to the Fi­nance Min­is­ter by the end of the week. They also said that they want the pro­posal to be sub­mit­ted to Par­lia­ment in the form of a bill. The gov­ern­ment’s pro­posal has been pre­pared af­ter con­sul­ta­tion and ex­change of views at the joint con­sul­ta­tive com­mit­tee for Cyta.

Gov­ern­ment sources were quoted by the Cyprus News Agency as say­ing that the pro­posal would make sense only af­ter the gov­ern­ment finds a suit­able in­vestor, adding that even af­ter the bill on the es­tab­lish­ment of the new pri­vate com­pany passes through Par­lia­ment, the em­ploy­ees will still be­long to the public com­pany.

Dur­ing the tran­si­tional pe­riod the work­ers will have four op­tions. The first is to work with the new pri­vate com­pany on the ba­sis of a pri­vate sec­tor con­tract. A pack­age of free shares will be of­fered to the work­ers as an in­cen­tive. The sec­ond is to work with the new com­pany un­der a con­tract but main­tain their po­si­tion at the public com­pany with­out pay­ment for as long as they or the in­vestor wish. The third op­tion would be vol­un­tary re­tire­ment and the fourth would be a trans­fer to another public depart­ment.

The bill on the es­tab­lish­ment of the new pri­vate Cyta is ex­pected to be tabled to the Cab­i­net on Au­gust 19 and then to the Par­lia­ment. The gov­ern­ment will then be­gin look­ing for a strate­gic in­vestor, a pro­ce­dure that is ex­pected to last no nine months.

Mean­while, the fed­er­a­tion of in­de­pen­dent unions POAS, said that Un­der­sec­re­tary to the Pres­i­dent Con­stanti­nos Petrides has un­der­mined their or­gan­i­sa­tion, es­pe­cially now that pri­vati­sa­tions are be­ing dis­cussed.

POAS said that it rep­re­sents some 20% of all work­ers in public or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­clud­ing EAC, the Ports Au­thor­ity, wa­ter boards and Cyta through PASE-ATHK.

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