Fico: Some Businesses Will Have Huge Aversion to Night Bonuses

Prime Minister Robert Fico during a night shift at the Lozorno Automobile Industrial Park (photo by TASR)

Bratislava/Lozorno, November 26 (TASR) – I’m aware that the proposed hikes in night work bonuses will be met with huge resistance of some entrepreneurs in Slovakia, stated Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) at a briefing on Sunday after doing an eight-hour night shift at the Lozorno Automobile Industrial Park (Malacky district, Bratislava region).

As part of his night shift, Fico welded special components for car doors at a company called IAC Group Slovakia between 10 p.m.-6 a.m. (Saturday-Sunday).

“I’m keeping my fingers crossed for all people, because I know the aversion of some entrepreneurs in Slovakia to night work bonuses will be enormous. However, I’m keeping my fingers crossed and I believe the proposal will eventually be passed in Parliament,” he said, adding that people with whom he worked during the night in Lozorno are looking forward to the bonuses.

Fico went on to say that he produced almost 500 welds during the shift. “The premier did an excellent job because beginners produce on average between 300-350 welds, and the premier made 497 welds, which is a decent performance given the fact that he did the job for the first time in his life,” said the company director Peter Zatkulak, adding that an experienced worker produces approximately 650 welds of this type per shift. Zatkulak added that his company hasn’t calculated so far how much it will cost them to pay higher bonuses for night work.

The prime minister did the eight-hour night shift as a gesture of solidarity with employees who work during the night, weekends and holidays.

Higher bonuses for night, weekend and holiday work form a part of the measures introduced by the coalition in the so-called social package.

In an amendment to the Labour Code, MPs of the governing Smer-SD party have proposed increasing bonuses for night work from 20 percent to 50 percent of the minimum wage as of May 2018. Bonuses for holiday work should go up from 50 percent of an employee’s average salary to 100 percent. Bonuses for weekend work should be introduced as well, amounting to at least 100 percent of the minimum wage.