Re­treat on so­cial se­cu­rity law

Gov’t is forced to ac­cept some key clauses can­not be im­ple­mented and plans a bill with amend­ments

Kathimerini English - - Focus - BY ROULA SALOUROU

The gov­ern­ment is re­treat­ing on the so­cial se­cu­rity con­tri­bu­tions payable by free­lance work­ers who is­sue in­voices for series ren­dered, as the clauses of the law in­tro­duced by for­mer la­bor and so­cial se­cu­rity min­is­ter Gior­gos Ka­trouga­los and the cir­cu­lars pub­lished have com­pli­cate the sit­u­a­tion to such an ex­tent that thou­sands of work­ers still don’t know how much they are sup­posed to pay.

Kathimerini has learned that the La­bor Min­istry has al­ready drafted a bill aimed at “ac­cel­er­at­ing the process for the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the so­cial se­cu­rity re­form,” which is ex­pected to reach Par­lia­ment in the next few days. It will in­clude clauses that mod­ify cru­cial points of the Ka­trouga­los law – voted last May – that came into force on Jan­uary 1 but has proved im­pos­si­ble to im­ple­ment.

No­tably, more than 150,000 work- ers still do not know the amount of con­tri­bu­tions they are sup­posed to pay to the new Sin­gle So­cial Se­cu­rity En­tity (EFKA).

With the heads of the cred­i­tors’ rep­re­sen­ta­tives in Athens and the talks at a cru­cial stage con­cern­ing new aus­ter­ity mea­sures in the so­cial se­cu­rity sys­tem amount­ing to 1 per­cent of the gross do­mes­tic prod­uct from 2019 or 2020, the min­istry has for the time be­ing cho­sen not to sub­mit a bill that would prac­ti­cally undo the so­cial se­cu­rity re­form.

The min­istry has also de­cided to use the con­sumer price in­dex for cal­cu­lat­ing the pen­sion­able earn­ings of those who sub­mit­ted their re­tire­ment papers af­ter May 13 last year, in order to de­ter­mine the amount of their pen­sions based on the Ka­trouga­los law.

Yes­ter­day the Hel­lenic Sta­tis­ti­cal Au­thor­ity (ELSTAT) is­sued a state­ment say­ing it was im­pos­si­ble to is­sue the salary change in­dex for the pe­riod since 2002 that the Ka­trouga- 1.0565 los law pro­vides for, and im­plic­itly blamed the min­istry for the de­lay of at least nine months in the is­su­ing of about 40,000 pen­sions. In a bid to un­freeze the cal­cu­la­tion process, the min­istry yes­ter­day tabled an amend­ment in Par­lia­ment ac­cord­ing to which the pen­sion­able earn­ings will be cal­cu­lated ac­cord­ing to ELSTAT’s av­er­age con­sumer price in­dex level un­til 2020. From 2021, a salary change in­dex yet to be agreed will be used in­stead.

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