The Confederation of Autonomous Trade Unions of Serbia (SSSS) will request a discussion about an increase of the minimum wage for this year at the Social-Economic Council (SES), after the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia announces the prices and the value of the minimal consumer basket for January, the secretary of the SSSS Council, Zoran Mihajlovic, said.

He told the Beta news agency that it had been agreed in December with the prime minister of Serbia, Ana Brnabic, for the minimum wage to be discussed again at the beginning of 2023.

– The minimal consumer basket cost over RSD 50,000 in December and had already exceeded the minimum wage for this year, which will amount to slightly over RSD 40,000. That means that the minimum wage lost step with the value of the minimal consumer basket back in December – Mihajlovic said.

He added that workers had not even felt the salary increase, because it had been “eaten” by the inflation, and that things would be even worse following the January increase in the prices of electricity, gas and other products.

The new minimum wage adjustment, according to the president of the United Branch Trade Unions “Independence”, Cedanka Andric, is an old request by that trade union, which was announced last year.

Andric said that, last year, the minimal consumer basket, when the minimum wage amounted to around RSD 35,000, cost RSD 50,000.

In September last year, the Government of Serbia, having failed to reach a consensus on the value of the minimum wage with trade unions and employers, set the minimum wage by itself at RSD 40,020.

The Labor Law envisages for the Government of Serbia to determine the minimum wage by itself in case no agreement is reached with the social partners.