Our salaries are adapted each year through a system set out in the Staff Regulations, called the « method ».. This system is based on two concepts : the evolution of purchasing power based net salaries of national civil servants between 1st July and 30th June, and the evolution of the cost of living based on the consumer price index for the same period. For our salaries, a special international index is used.
The integration of the « method » in the new Staff Regulations ensures an annual automatic adjustment of our salaries. With the method, it has been possible to avoid social conflict every year and ensure that our salaries are adjusted. This automatic salary adjustment is carried out based on rules set out in the Staff Regulations. Thanks to these rules our salaries have risen in line with the salaries of national civil servants.
CONF-SFE insists that the figures and calculations be thoroughly examined and that the method be applied strictly in accordance with the rules that were negotiated. The method cannot be weakened or neutralised by not applying the rules correctly.
Some unions in our Institutions favour abandoning the method and going for an annual negotiation of our salary levels. For CONF-SFE, abandoning the method would lead to a situation where salaries would no longer be automatically adjusted, with a serious risk of conflict with the Council every year, and a real possibility that our salaries fall behind the rise in consumer prices.
This year, the application of the method by the Commission requires particularly careful attention because consumer prices have increased substantially in 2007/8 and the Commission could be tempted to neutralise this large increase in prices by a restrictive application of the method. CONF-SFE is following this crucially important very closely. It will be present at every meeting of the joint bodies charged with examining proposals to adjust our salaries and will ask the necessary questions, Insisting that the method be correctly applied and that it reflects the real increase and the increase foreseen in the annual budget.
More information will follow as soon as we have received more detailed information
The Executive Committee