Minister of Labor and Social Policies Mykhailo Papiyev told a press conference on Monday that he will request the President to call a session of the National Security and Defense Council to check on the implementation of the Cabinet's decisions with regard to increased social payments and to dismiss the governors who fail to implement them, Cabinet press office reported.

Mr. Papiyev underlined that the government's initiatives with regard to pension provision have been inculcated in the draft state budget-2008, which, according to him, stipulates increased wages in the budget sphere as part of the scheme to raise the state's social guarantees by UAH 269 bn.

The minister reported that the government will raise salaries and wages in several stages in 2008, like it did this year. As a result, the minimal wage of UAH 505 projected for January 1 will grow to UAH 565 by October 1, 2008. Moreover, the single tariff scale will be fully implemented with the introduction of its third stage in 2008. "The wages of budget-funded employees in December 2008 will be 45-50 percent higher than those in December 2007. This is a serious positive indicator," Mr. Papiyev underlined.

The minister said he is aware that base wages of some budget employees have been raised in accordance with the government's resolutions but their increments and bonuses have been cut. This was absolutely uncalled for, especially considering that the current budget envisages UAH 4.2 bn for this purpose, which funds have been forwarded to the regions.

This, Mr. Papiyev believes, suggests either some political undertones or sabotage. However, the failure to pay wages in the volumes foreseen by the government's resolutions pertains to the issues of national security, hence his intention to ask the President to call a session of the NSDC.


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