Collective bargaining wages see biggest increase in 12 years
Collective bargaining wages increased by 3 percent on average in 2020, the biggest increase in 12 years, Statistics Netherlands reported on Thursday. Employees in industry, construction and catering saw the biggest increases, at over 3.5 percent. These increases are the result of agreements largely made before the coronavirus pandemic.
The outlook for this year and next year is much bleaker, employers' organization AWVN told broadcaster NOS. It predicts wage increases of about 1.2 percent this year, while inflation is expected to amount to 1.4 percent. If that turns out to be right, it will be the lowest collective wage increase since 2014.
The slow down in wage increases is due to uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Many companies are uncertain about their future. This resulted in many collective bargaining negotiations stalling since the outbreak of the pandemic. In sectors were agreements were made, the wage increase agreed upon was generally lower.
According to figures from AWVN, over 720 thousand workers are currently covered by a collective bargaining agreement that expired and where no new agreement is in place. This includes employees at supermarkets, the metal and electronics industry, pharmacies and hair salon. The collective agreements for another 1.4 million employees will expire this month.