Experts rule out Gov’t ability to raise public sector salaries

2. Lower House
(File photo: Ameer Khalifeh/Jordan News)
AMMAN — Economists ruled out the government’s ability to accept one of 20 recommendations made by the Lower House Finance Committee, which called for an increase in the salaries of employees and retirees in the public sector, saying that in light of the severe budget deficit and high national debt, it is almost impossible to meet that demand, Amman Net reported Sunday.اضافة اعلان

Minister of Finance Mohammad Al-Ississ asked during the Lower House discussion of the budget draft law “where will these extra funds come from in light of the estimated budget deficit of $2.4 billion?”

The committee also recommended that retired employees’ pensions that are less than JD300 be increased by JD15, pensions that are lower than JD250 be increased by JD25, and those that are lower than JD200 be increased by JD50.

Member of the Finance Committee Dirar Al-Harasis said that this recommendation comes at a time employees and retirees are suffering from difficult conditions due to low salaries, and the country is going through a tough economic situation due to the repercussions of the pandemic.

He added that the committee is waiting for the government’s response to its recommendations, asking that the issue be considered seriously and result in raises, similar to those of workers and retirees in the military, whose salaries were increased during 2019.

The Department of Statistics announced that the general consumer price index increased in 2021 by 1.35 percent, to reach 102.46 percent, compared to 101.10 percent during 2020.

According to official data, the average salary for workers in the public and private sectors is JD416 per month. The average salary for men in the Kingdom in both sectors was JD429 and for women JD379 per month.

Economist Mufleh Al-Akel said that it is not possible to improve the financial situation of retirees in the absence of foreign investments and without increasing economic growth rates, which would help reduce the budget deficit.

Economic expert Qassem Al-Hammouri said it is important that the government adopt this recommendation, as it will achieve positive results by improving the living conditions of families, on the one hand, and moving the economic wheel, on the other.

However, he admitted that it is impossible to implement this recommendation, given the budget deficit, and stressed that it is important to paying attention to recovering public funds, including state funds in the public domain.

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