Chamber and Unite reach wage accord for retail and distributive trades

The Gibraltar Chamber of Commerce and Unite, the Union have reached an agreement on recommended increases in wages for workers in the Retail and Distributive Trades.

In the last 12 months traders in these sectors have had to deal with a significant increase in business costs and they have also continued to feel the effects of the economic slowdown elsewhere. With this in mind both parties realise the need for prudence in regard to wage increases.

Workers earning the minimum wage

In January this year the government increased the statutory minimum wage to £5.40 an hour. Workers in these sectors who were on the Chamber’s minimum recommended wage of £5.07 per hour in 2010 have seen their wages rise to the new minimum rate of £5.40 an hour. As a result, no further increase is awarded for 2011.

However, the Chamber and Unite have agreed to increase the basic wage from £5.40 per hour to £5.47 per hour as from 1st January 2012.

Workers earning above the minimum wage

For those workers earning wages above £5.40 an hour the Chamber and Unite recommend a 3% increase in line with the annual rate of inflation. The increase in wage rates for these workers should be made retrospective to 1st January 2011.

The Chamber and the Union have agreed to hold these wage levels for two years until 31st December 2012.

As agreed last year, the Chamber and the Union agree that the priority must be to preserve full employment and this can only be achieved by managing costs on an ongoing basis. Any rise in unemployment locally will have knock-on effects elsewhere in the economy and this must be avoided wherever possible.

The full list of the increased minimum rates will be circulated to members in the relevant sectors in the next few days.