Trade unions demand measures to support the population in the context of rising prices
The National Confederation of Trade Unions of Moldova calls on the parliament and the government to introduce a number of measures to support the population and the economy in the context of the recent increase in tariffs for natural gas, fuel, and food products.
“Despite the fact that natural gas and heat transfer tariff offset measures covered a significant portion of the tariff increase for residential consumers, the lack of measures to subsidize producers as a result of a 29.32% increase in fuel prices during the 12 months of 2021 and an increase in tariffs for energy resources led to a significant increase in prices for food products – by 17.46% and by 12.06% for non-food products,” the NCPM said in a statement, ipn.md reports.
According to trade unions, against the backdrop of these increases, the purchasing power of wages and pensions has deteriorated. The increase in the minimum pension from October 1, 2021 and the benchmarks used in calculating the wages of public sector employees, starting from January 1, 2022, were completely outpaced by the growth in maintenance costs.
“Unfortunately, we must state that measures to support the population, especially families with children, the elderly and other vulnerable categories, are currently insufficient and must be supplemented by measures to stop price increases,” the statement emphasizes.
The NCPM calls on the authorities to apply the new guaranteed minimum wage in the real sector of 3,500 lei in order to increase the minimum wage guaranteed by the state, as well as to increase, by at least 200 lei, the benchmarks applied in the calculation of the wages of employees in the public sector . The NCPM also calls for wage increases for employees of public health facilities, reduction of VAT quotas for locally produced products (bread, dairy products, vegetables, fruits, cereals and meat), support for domestic producers by providing preferential priority for placing their products on store shelves , providing subsidies to agricultural producers for the purchase of fuel necessary for spring agricultural work.
In the event of an increase in electricity tariffs, trade unions consider it important to develop a support mechanism for all domestic and non-residential consumers.
“Otherwise, the increase in tariffs will affect the entire population and enterprises of the country, which will lead to a new wave of rise in prices for goods and services,” reads a statement sent to the parliament and government.