GREECE - The Greek parliament has passed government legislation to create a single supplementary pension fund for the banking sector, replacing the 11 such funds currently in operation.
Government ministers have set out to ease the burden on banks with large pension liabilities at the same time as protecting the entitlements of employees hired before 1993.
In this way, participating banks will have to make any necessary additional contributions to meet the full cost of setting up and running the new fund.
This will be spread over a period of ten years.
However, the 1993 cut-off implies the benefits of employees hired after that date may suffer through alignment with those of the vast majority of private-sector workers.
Opposition political parties and groups throughout the country are also against the scheme, claiming it will over-burden IKA, the main private-sector social security fund, whose future is contingent on an internal overhaul of its own.
In response to these concerns, the Greek Federation of Bank Employee Unions (OTOE) recently staged a four-week strike, paralysing the financial sector.
Furthermore, the union is threatening more disruption and protests at each bank signing up to the reform.
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