A wage freeze is in application in Belgium for 2013-1014 in order to maintain the competitive position of our companies as compared to neighbouring countries. Increases in minimum wages and those resulting from indexation will be authorized, however.
What does the wage standard apply to, and what doesn't it apply to?
The wage standard refers to the average wage cost per worker per company. A wage freeze for the next two years means concretely that during this period, the average wage cost cannot rise.
The concept of "wage cost" does not apply exclusively to the "gross salary" - it also refers to non-mandatory benefits such as bonuses, restaurant vouchers, and even reimbursements of certain accounts. These are particularly reimbursements of expenses that have nothing to do with the actual work (for example, the cost of travel from home to work). Conversely, reimbursements of professional expenses (for example professional travel, tools for work, etc.) are not concerned. An exception is also possible for non-recurring results-related benefits.
As this freeze pertains to the evolution of the average wage cost, individual raises in salary will not necessarily be excluded. As long as the individual raises do not increase the average wage cost per worker, they pose no problem.
Indexations and increases in wage rates corresponding to the official wage scale also fall outside the wage freeze. This increase in wage rates refers to a raise resulting from a new position, or greater seniority or experience within the company or the sector.
Questions ? Please contact Group S - International Division