Pay salaries in USD: TNF

Tripartite Negotiating Forum (TNF) partners are advocating for wages and salaries to be pegged in United States dollars which they say would improve buying power and income for workers.

The partners that comprise government representatives, labour and business have been engaged in a meeting that started on Monday and ended Thursday in Victoria Falls to deliberate on strategies of finding each other and reaching consensus on conditions of work and labour issues.

The participants came up with a list of priorities classified under economic, labour and social clusters which they said should be areas of engagement next year.

Among the priority areas are; “need to have price and income stability through pegging salaries and wages in United States dollars payable at interbank rate.”

They said companies affording to pay in United States dollars or any foreign currency should be allowed to do so while those without capacity should pay in the local currency but the salaries should be pegged in USD terms.

Currently, some workers earn local currency which easily gets eroded by inflation and exorbitant exchange rates.

Other priority areas include the need for exchange rate stabilisation, policy consistency, putting national interests ahead of personal interests, review income tax bands in line with economic trends, operationalization of the TNF and setting up of its independent secretariat, gazetting minimum wage, addressing gender inequality in labour issues, provision of WASH services in urban and rural communities, coming up with strategies to deal with drug and substance abuse among workers and citizens I general, putting in place measures to deal with migration and dealing with corruption among other issues.

Public Service Minister Paul Mavima who is chair of the TNF said significant progress had been made in coming up with a consensus on labour issues.

“We adopted priority areas on what the TNF should work on and set an agenda for 2023. These recommendations will be made to the Cabinet making a contribution towards development of practical policies,” said Mavima.

Representing workers, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) president Florence Chitauro said workers understand that consensus building is key but will not tolerate compromised positions.

She implored the government to respect workers’ rights.

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