Rabat- Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani has revealed the government’s new resolutions to give additional benefits to public and private sector employees after social dialogue meetings with trade unions, employee representatives, and entrepreneurs, aimed at solving employment challenges for the national economy.
During a meeting at the House of Representatives on Monday, El Othmani briefed Parliament on the key results of social dialogue that began five months after he took office. In October 2017, he opened social dialogue with representatives of economic sectors, including general contractors, trustees, and national trade union centers.
El Othmani stated that the purpose of the first social dialogue meeting was to find mutual goals between the government, capital markets, and management sectors, to consider proposals, and to develop a plan to improve financial regulations.
After a number of talks and agreements, the government formed three committees: a private sector committee lead by Minister of Employment Mohamed Yatim, a public sector committee lead by Minister of Civil Service and Modernization of Administration Mohamed Ben Abdelkader, and a committee concerned with income improvement lead by El Othmani.
A fourth committee was established to coordinate and organize schedules for future meetings between the three committees that El Othmani claims will provide a new perspective for social dialogue and a stable ground for negotiations.
The government’s financial support for employees
El Othmani said that the government signed a three-year draft agreement in April with social and economic partners committed to social dialogue.
The agreement includes an MAD 6 billion financial offer by the government to increase the salaries of low-paid employees starting July 2018 and to increase social security payments for child benefits by MAD 100 for each child with a parent employed in either the public or private sector.
Approximately 390,000 employees in public administration will benefit from the child benefit, at a cost of MAD 981 million to the government, starting July 1.
The government will also create a new promotion degree for employees, increasing the number of promotions available to teachers, professors, newly appointed tutors, and administrative workers.
El Othmani further announced that he is calling the Administrative Council of the National Social Security Fund (CNSS) to enable the same benefits for workers in the private sector.
The agreement also includes compensating employees in rural areas at MAD 700 per month, complementing social protection by improving retirement income, and compensating job loss or unemployment. El Othmani is encouraging citizens to declare their employment status in order for the government to create jobs for the unemployed.
The government’s door is open for social dialogue
Concluding, El Othmani spoke of the government’s willingness for social dialogue with groups from all backgrounds, saying: “No matter the circumstances or differences in opinions, the government will continue to be open for social dialogue.” He emphasized that the government will assist in reinforcing investment and employment opportunities.
With respect to the private sector, El Othmani insisted that the government is making efforts to enhance the financial conditions of employees in the sector.
El Othmani declared that the government’s offers are still open to institutions that did not respond to the social dialogue meetings.
It is to be hoped that the government’s aforementioned initiatives will prove beneficial to the national employment rate.
According to a recent report by Morocco’s High Commission for Planning (HCP), the number of unemployed individuals rose from 1,167,000 to 1,216,000 people between 2016 and 2017, mostly in urban areas.
On a different light, the government’s financial offer may further contribute to the increase in debt, given that the borrowing requirements of the country’s treasury stand at MAD 13 billion. This may hamper the government’s attempts to narrow its debts through lowering salary expenditures, according to the Directorate of Treasury and External Finance (DTFE).