Trinidad and Tobago’s three trade union federations say on Tuesday they officially lodged a complaint to the International Labour
Organization following what they described as disturbing comments by the Minister of Finance concerning public sector wage negotiations with respect to the Industrial Court and National Petroleum.
The National Trade Union Centre, Joint Trade Union Movement Federation of Independent Trade Unions and Non-governmental
organizations say the Minister’s words are implying the court is responsible for the financial state of NP.
In a media release this afternoon, the federations said on January 26 th in the Parliament the Finance Minister said: “Recently, the Industrial Court awarded an increase to workers at National Petroleum.
“I cannot say what the precise figure is, but I know it is within the range of 10 to 11 per cent salary increase.”
“As a result of that award by the Industrial Court, National Petroleum is now running at a loss every month in the vicinity of 15 to $20 million.”
The Federations say it is a fact the Industrial Court never awarded an increase of salary of 10 to 11 percent, NP’s witness, as stated in the Judgment, said he was comfortable with the award of a single digit increase anywhere from 0 to 9 %, the OWTU requested an increase of 14 % and the Court granted an increase of 7%.