The Group of Ten has been given full autonomy to reach agreements on salary evolution, frameworks for sectorial collective agreements, the extension of the bi-annual sectoral collective agreements and how the 300 million euro earmarked to help those on the lowest pensions and benefits should be shared.
The Federal Government has also agreed to take measures that will stear the ax burden away from income earned from working to other sources of income. The initial results of these measures should be felt already this year.
In early February the Federal Government will draft a bill for the setting up of a national pensions committee. The new committee will start work in April. The National Pensions Committee will compile a list of proffessions considered to require great physical effort as well as making preperations for a new system of part time pension.
The Federal Prime Minister Premier Charles Michel (Francophone liberal) was keen to stress that in order to achieve these ambitious plans it was of essence that there are no strikes and that the negotiations can continue in a stable atmosphere.
The Group of Ten will meet again on 30 January at 8am.
After Thursday’s meeting, the unions and employers were upbeat about the contructive atmosphere around the negotiating table.
The Chairwoman of the employers' organisation VBO (and of the Group of 10) Michèle Sioen told journalists that “I am pleased to hear that the government wants to keep the negotiations within the Group of Ten.”