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Gov’t decrees reallocate HUF 47 bln for bonus compensation

  A government decree published in the latest issue of official gazette Magyar Közlöny reallocates HUF 47 billion in budget money to be used as compensation for annual bonuses for public sector workers.

The government decided to suspend annual bonuses in 2009 for public sector workers as part of government austerity measures. But when unions threatened to strike, the government agreed to provide compensation equivalent to an entire month’s wages to workers earning up to HUF 180,000 per month (about $855/m), and a fixed HUF 180,000 of compensation for employees earning more. (Public sector annual bonuses in Hungary are usually equivalent to a full month’s pay.) The agreement was reached just a few days after Parliament approved the 2009 budget.

The compensation will require additional budget expenditures of HUF 120 billion, of which HUF 80 billion will come from reserves already built into the budget and the rest from the reallocated HUF 47 billion. Government officials declined to comment when asked why HUF 47 billion, not HUF 40 billion, was reallocated. (MTI-Econews)