TR Ministry of Labor and Social Security

Vedat Bilgin, Minister of Labor and Social Security, answered questions about the agenda and working life live on NTV. Bilgin announced that retirees’ Ramadan holiday bonuses will be deposited into their accounts on April 28 or 29 before the holiday.

Minister Bilgin shared the following information on the contribution of the participation program in the production process, which was piloted in Gaziantep, to working life:

“Employment is one of the main problems in Turkey. Our goal is to increase the number of people involved in the production process. Turkey is a country of 85 million people. As our economy develops, the level of well-being increases, but one of the most important factors in sharing the level of well-being is to reduce the number of unemployed. It is not possible for the unemployed to get a share of social assistance, therefore our goal is to reduce the number of unemployed and to make the social security system complete, which is among the important indicators social assistance. Considering that Turkey is one of the two countries in the world to have achieved growth after the pandemic process, we have a double-digit growth rate if we take last year’s growth figure seriously. Considering the 13% increase in industrial production last month, Turkey is a country that is achieving industrial growth and creating jobs at the same time. Despite pandemic conditions last year, we became the economy that created over a million jobs. »

Production Process Participation Program

Emphasizing that Turkey continues its momentum despite the fluctuations in the economy, Bilgin said: “Industry-based growth is extremely important in export-based growth. Because the share of industrial products in our total exports increases every year. All of this shows that we have the capacity to create jobs. When we meet with our industrialists and businessmen, the most common request is; they couldn’t find the people they were looking for. We thought we could do this in two ways: first, we renewed the on-the-job training programs and made them more comprehensive. The second is the Production Process Participation Program, which is a new model. We launched it in Gaziantep, we will implement it selectively in Bursa, Izmit and other industrial areas, and we will measure its impact on long-term employment. We have identified unemployed people who applied to İŞKUR to participate in the production process in three categories: Those with primary education, secondary school and university graduates will be paid in three different salary categories. We will pay the recruits’ wages directly to the employer, three months if the nature of the work requires three months, and six months if it requires six months. However, we have a condition: a project that concerns the worker’s job guarantee, which the employer receives for three months, 1 year if he receives assistance for three months, and 2 years if he receives assistance during six months. It will be a project that directly creates jobs, and not a training course or a course to which companies with more than 50 employees can apply. Because by transferring the ability of companies to create jobs and their need for skilled labor to workers participating in their own production processes, they will train their own employees, we will support the training process, and then they will continue to be employed. As this is a project that has the capacity to directly create jobs, the Turkish industrialists I have spoken to have welcomed it with enthusiasm and I believe that it will have an important function as an opportunity to job creation in Turkey.

New on-the-job training program with job guarantee

Providing information on the new on-the-job training program with employment guarantee, Minister Bilgin said that there were certain employment guarantees in the previous application, but they were abused and said “We have established a new regulation which prevents these abuses. In the on-the-job training program, we stipulate a job guarantee for the employee who is employed. We bring in the 3×3 model, and we ensure that the employee will work for 9 months when we accompany the employer for 3 months, and 18 months when we accompany the employer for 6 months. They also have salary categories according to various characteristics of participants in the education process, such as being a student or being unemployed. We have transformed it into a model in the form of on-the-job training, we believe that this model has the capacity to create employment. At the same time, we will measure these programs by carrying out impact analyses. There are resources that were previously used in non-functional jobs, we directed all these inefficiently used resources to the job. There is no problem of resources, the important thing is to create the jobs demanded by the industry and to guarantee employment”.

Bilgin said that with respect to talks on raising retirement holiday bonus wages, which are on the agenda, this issue is not on their agenda at this time. Stating that the Ramadan holiday bonuses will be deposited into the accounts in the form of 1100 TL with current fees, Bilgin shared the information that the bonuses will be paid out to retirees on April 28 or 29.

“We have guaranteed our employees by protecting them with collective agreements”

Furthermore, noting that inflation-based regulation or an update of the minimum wage is not on their agenda, Minister Bilgin recalled that an economic program based on the fight against inflation is currently being implemented, and stated:

“This economic program must succeed and there must be no attempt to disrupt it. If we can make inflation a horizontal line and then a downward trend after August, this will be extremely important for the success of Turkey’s new economic program, to achieve its growth and export objectives. These lead to events that will trigger hyperinflation and send Turkey into an inflationary spiral. I do not find it appropriate to make statements that would allude to the danger of such hyper-inflation. We don’t have such an agenda at the moment. 3 months ago, we increased the minimum wage by more than 50% on a historic basis. For the first time, we have excluded the minimum wage from all types of wages, this is a historic step. Our employees, including pensioners, will again receive the inflation difference in July when inflation differentials emerge within the collective bargaining system. In the previous period, we gave a share of welfare or balance at the beginning of January, and we will put them back on the agenda in July. Turkey is running its program under control, growing through exports, and as industrial production increases, Turkey’s growth in real terms is on solid foundations. We must carry out our economic program and we must not sink here into deviations and populist demands. We have guaranteed our employees and workers by protecting them with the collective agreements we have concluded. We are realizing its economic program based on social policies, and we have no doubt that we will also succeed.

Stating that the 3600 Supplementary Indicators Commission will meet for the last time on May 10 and that the resulting settlement will be presented to the President, Bilgin said: “The next stage is the parliamentary stage. I think that will be out of the question. Parliament at the end of this year.”

Bilgin, “Will there be a study on what is called retirement age (AET) in public opinion?” “These debates sometimes take place in Parliament. We have MPs who make statements. It is natural for politicians to make these statements. It is not on our agenda at the moment. I like to talk about issues that are on our agenda. There are 3600 additional indicators on our agenda, there are contract workers in the public sector”, he gave the answer.

Mentioning that the subject of contractual staff will be studied after the additional indicator 3600, Bilgin said: “There are many contractual statutes in the public sector, we are considering reducing them. It is necessary to hire only people with trades such as IT specialists with rare statuses on a contractual basis. At the moment, we are considering transforming the contracted order in the public sector, which is very messy, into a new status with the rights of civilian personnel, and this work is continuing. After 3600, this will be our first agenda, and we will complete this issue within the year,” he said.

“May 1st is a Labor Day celebrated where democracy exists”

Congratulating confederations, trade unions and workers on May 1st Labor and Solidarity Day, Minister Bilgin continued:

“May Day is the institution of democracy, countries where May Day is freely celebrated are democratic countries. May 1st is a Labor Day celebrated where there is democracy. Violent organizations with anti-democratic leanings are the enemies of May Day. Since they are the enemies of democracy, they are also the enemies of May Day, we don’t take them seriously. But the big mass organizations in Turkey, our confederations Türk-İş, Hak-İş, DİSK, are communities of trade unionists and workers who have adopted May Day institutionally and understand its meaning. I congratulate May Day and all our workers who act with the conscience of democracy. I hope we celebrate May Day with a surprise this year”

“The saying of the European delegation “I do not recognize social law” is a historical drama”

Stating that the European delegation has not implemented the rights and collective agreements of organized Turkish workers, Bilgin said: “When we say the European Union, the European institutions, we think of democracy, social rights, social law and social policy. There is a European delegation in Turkey which does not apply them, they do not apply the collective agreement, of course we will impose all the sanctions on them. Everyone living in the Republic of Turkey, every institution, every institution must comply with the laws enacted by the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, our Labor Law, our Collective Bargaining Law and our Trade Union Law. It is a state of social law, the declaration of the European Delegation “I do not recognize social law” is a historical drama. They are committing this shame and no one should doubt that we will impose the necessary sanctions against them.

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