The government wants to cut down employment benefits for the highest income groups. Unemployment benefits in the country are normally negotiated with trade unions and constitute on average 68% of a worker’s previous wages. This means that if highly paid workers lose their job they can get unemployment benefits up to 7700 euro a month. The average amount of unemployment benefits, however, lies around 1200 a month. The government defends its plans to reduce the amount of employment benefits by comparing the countries’ policies with other OECD nations than on average pay only 56% of the last earned wages in employment benefits. With the new austerity plans the government wants to save up to 3.9 billion euros over three years.
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