UFTUM addressed a letter to the President of the Social Council on subject of minimum consumer basket

On the occasion of yesterday’s revised minimum consumer basket published by the Statistical Office – Monstat, the Union of Free Trade Unions of Montenegro addressed a letter to the President of the Social Council, Mr. Kemal Purisic, requesting urgent convening of the session of the Social Council to discuss this topic.

The letter said the following:

SOCIAL COUNCIL OF MONTENEGRO
President, Mr. Kemal Purisic

Mr. Purisic,

Having in mind that the consultative meeting of the Presidency of the Social Council in an enlarged composition will be held on Thursday, March 8, 2018, I am addressing you that at this meeting you consider the request of the Union of Free Trade Unions of Montenegro for scheduling an urgent session of the Social Council at which the revised minimum consumer basket published by the Statistical Office – Monstat will be discussed. As you know, the Union of Free Trade Unions of Montenegro, on January 15, 2018, called for the convening of the session of the Social Council where  the consumer basket and the poverty line would be considered among other things, whereby we stated the necessity for the social partners to get complete information on the conducted procedure for definition of the minimum consumer basket, and in accordance with the Monstat’s announcement that starting from February they will start to publish data on the minimum consumer basket on monthly basis. On that occasion, we especially emphasized the fact that the social partners in the previous period made numerous comments on the intention to reduce the number of food products that will in future be included in a minimum consumer basket, as well as the intention to erase the value of the rent for housing from the previous structure of the consumer basket. At this point, we remind that at the session of the Social Council held in November 2016, it was agreed that representatives of the Monstat will introduce the members of the Social Council with the revised methodology of the minimum consumer basket before its official publication, which did not happen. In addition to the above mentioned request, we asked that, in order to determine the amount of minimum wages and social benefits, the social partners should be informed about the reasons why the Statistical Office has not compiled and published the results of the poverty analysis since 2013.

As the last session of the Social Council did not address the aforementioned issues raised by the Union of Free Trade Unions of Montenegro, and in the meantime, Monstat published a minimum consumer basket for January 2018, which caused numerous reactions of social partners and citizens, we consider that convening a session of the Social Council on this topic is necessary, and it is our opinion that representatives of the Monstat attend it.

In the expectation of the answer,

UFTUM Member of the Social Council Presidency

Mr Vukašin Zogović