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Saturday 20.04.2019 | Name days: Mirta, Ziedīte
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Latvian Saeima rules in favour of industry businessmen – overtime pay to reach 50%

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUOvertime pay in industries that have signed a general agreement will not be allowed to be lower than 50% of set hourly rate, according to new legislation approved by the Saeima.

Until now overtime pay in all cases was set at 100%. Industries that have not signed the general agreement will preserve the existing overtime pay model.

Saeima’s press-service reports that on Thursday, 28 March, approved for the second reading amendments to the Labour Law that provides an option for industries that have signed a general agreement to significantly increase minimal wages and in turn reduce the bonus for overtime work.

«With this legislative draft we are promoting social dialogue and signing of general agreements. This is a step in the right direction. By sorting the wage system, we expect state budget revenue to increase. The money saved on this will be diverted to the country’s healthcare and welfare system,» says chairman of Saeima’s Social and Labour Affairs Committee Andris Skride.

When working on the second viewing of the legislative draft, the committee added clarifications, providing that wage increase is considered that which is equal to at least 50% of the country’s minimal wage or hourly rate.

The law also includes a mechanism to prevent situations when the general agreement no longer meets the criterion on increasing minimal wages in industries by at least 50% together with the state-established minimal wage.

Transition rules were added with a delegation for the Cabinet of Ministers to submit to the parliament an assessment on application of new legislative regulations in practice and their influence on the legal state of employees by 1 February 2021.

The changes to Labour Law approved by the 12th Saeima in the final reading were sent back to the parliament for repeated viewing by Latvia’s President Raimonds Vējonis, asking deputies to assess the compliance of approved norms to the Constitution’s guaranteed equality principle.

In accordance with Labour Law, industry general agreement is signed by employers that employ more than 50% of the set industry’s workers and whose goods or services turnover exceeds 50% of the industry’s total turnover. Such a general agreement is binding to all employers in an industry and all of its workers. The general agreement is primarily aimed at protecting the interests of workers and enhance their social guarantees, as mentioned in the annotation of law amendments.


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