Government steps in to Posti dispute over high salaries and contract conditions

A three-day strike by parcel workers highlights how little take-home pay they would get compared to the huge salary of Posti's CEO.

File picture of Sirpa Paatero (SDP) Minister of Local Government and Ownership Steering / Credit: VNK

The government has stepped into a labour dispute which has exposed the high salaries of executives at the state-owned Posti postal service.

At a press conference in Helsinki on Tuesday, Minister of Local Government and Ownership Steering Sirpa Paatero (SDP) said she would stop the transfer of 700 Posti parcel workers from one collective bargaining to another.

The workers have been on strike this week as the union claims they faced 30% to 50% wage cuts under a new collective bargaining agreement, when the current one expires.

With the average postal worker earning around €2200 per month, a pay cut would be financially extremely tough for the employees.

The minister says she’s suspending the workers’ transfer to the new, cheaper, collective bargaining agreement until the issue is investigated by unions and employers.

Paatero also said there will be a review of the salaries of Posti executives after it was revealed that CEO Heikki Malinen was receiving €990,000 per year – an increase of 65%.

Malinen takes home more than €82,000 each month, but says he will forgo two month’s salary this year in light of the current situation.

However, Minister Paatero said on Tuesday there would have to be “significant” pay cuts for executives who earn such large salaries at the state-owned enterprise.