Money & Banking

IBA’s revised wage-hike offer of 8% rejected by bank unions

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on November 30, 2018 Published on November 30, 2018

Bank unions, on Friday, rejected the Indian Banks’ Association’s improved offer of an 8 per cent hike in wages against 6 per cent earlier under the industry-wide 11th bipartite wage negotiations.

Variable pay

Nine unions, under the banner of the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), also told the association’s wage negotiation committee that the proposal to introduce variable pay, which will be linked to return on assets and operating profit, as part of the overall 8 per cent wage hike, is not acceptable.

S Nagarajan, General Secretary, All India Bank Officers’ Association, said: “The 8 per cent offer should be improved upon further. We are not agreeable to variable pay.”

When it comes to officers, five banks – State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Punjab National Bank, Union Bank of India and Indian Bank – have given a mandate for wage negotiations only up to the rank of Scale III (Senior Manager), while 14 other public sector banks have given the mandate for all seven scales (from officer to General Manager).

“So, we told the negotiating committee that unless they decide on the mandate issue first, discussing anything else is irrelevant. On this, there is literally a deadlock.

“Historically, there has been standardisation in wages. They (IBA) cannot alter this. When the central pay commission decides on salaries from subordinate staff to Cabinet Secretary, the same principle should apply when it comes to negotiating wages of employees of government-owned banks,” emphasised Nagarajan.

Depending on the financial health of a bank, the maximum and minimum variable pay per year that has been worked out is 30 days and 5 days, respectively.

Going by the return on assets and operating profit parameters, Nagarajan said only Vijaya Bank and Indian Bank will be in a position to offer 30 days variable pay to employees. He added that the 15 per cent wage hike offered in the 10th bipartite wage settlement should be the starting point for the 11th bipartite wage negotiations.

After the 10th industry-wide wage settlement had run its course, ending on October 31, 2017, there have been close to 12 rounds of negotiations between bank unions and management, but not much headway could be made so far as there is a gap between the demand for salary hike and that on offer.

Published on November 30, 2018

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