More money for low-paid workers
A new collective agreement for 1.3 million industrial workers in Sweden was signed on Friday, and those earning under a certain amount will receive a special boost.
The trade unions and the employers’ associations agreed to a three-year deal with a total pay rise of 6.5 per cent. In practice that will mean an annual rise of 2 per cent, with the remaining 0.5 per cent set aside for a part-time pension system.
Anders Ferbe is the president of the trade union IF Metall.
“Our assessment is that these pay rises provide a good base for real-wage improvements during the agreement period. And that is the most important thing we have to deliver to our members,” he said.
The trade unions had been pushing hard for a special pay deal for those earning less than SEK 24,000 per month, something the employers had previously rejected.
But a deal has now been struck, which “everyone can live with,” according to Anders Weihe, who led the negotiations on behalf of the Association of the Swedish Engineering Industry.
The agreement binds the unions not to strike, and in return they get guaranteed pay rises and other conditions. This agreement for the industrial workers often sets the tone for the other agreements that will be signed later.