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Greece holds talks on public-sector redundancies

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The Greek government is holding emergency talks on Saturday with creditors including the European Commission and International Monetary Fund on the question of firing state workers.

The Greek government is holding emergency talks on Saturday with creditors including the European Commission and International Monetary Fund on the question of firing state workers.

The talks are due to be concluded on Sunday evening, in time for an extraordinary meeting of the Greek cabinet to approve the measures, the government press service said.

Greece has to get an 8 billion euro trance of funding from its creditors next week in order to refinance its debt, and pay wages and pensions. However, Greece has not succeeded in appeasing its creditors with the measures it has so far taken to cut government spending and needs to take additional measures.

Among them are further cuts to the state sector. State jobs are protected by the constitution, but the government intends to put up to 30,000 of its 750,000 state employees on the “labor reserve,” in order to cut wages by 60 percent. These workers will be laid off in a year if they can’t find alternative work.

In addition, the government plans to lower the wages and pay rises of state workers by around 20 percent in addition to the cuts already imposed in the course of the last 18 months.

The next tranche of funding from Greece’s creditors will not be paid until whilst the government decides when the redundancies will begin, as its creditors have demanded.

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