JC 207 (non-manual workers from the chemical industry): the 2019-2020 national agreement has been concluded!

Author: Leen Lafourt
Date:

On 26 June 2019, the social partners of this joint committee concluded their 2019-2020 sector agreement. This agreement applies to all employers and non-manual workers (whose positions are included in the job classification) from the chemical industry, unless otherwise stated below.

This agreement observes the maximum envelope for negotiation of 1.1% in 2019 and 2020 as prescribed by the R.D. of 19 April 2019. Free negotiations are possible for the companies covered by the agreement in accordance with the Royal Decree of 19 April 2019. In the case of companies not covered by the agreement, the social partners themselves have agreed on the arrangements.

Below, you will find a brief overview of the main subjects of the sector agreement. A detailed analysis can be found in our sector documentation.

Provisions with an impact on wages

Minimum wage scale

The gross minimum experience-related wages will increase:

  • on 1 July 2019 by 20.7996 EUR;
  • on 1 January 2020, by 13.8664 EUR.

These increases are not directive for the negotiations in the companies covered by the agreement.

Companies not covered by the agreement

On 1 January 2020, there shall be a 1.1% increase in the gross monthly wages and the shift bonuses (insofar as they are expressed in terms of lump sum amounts) effectively paid in companies that are not bound by a CLA as regards the possible increase in purchasing power for the period 2019-2020.

Any increases in the gross monthly wage and/or other benefits (other than wage indexation or increases in corporate scales) can be deducted from this. Any increases resulting from the increase in the sectoral minimum amounts may also be taken into account.

These provisions cannot be used as an example or precedent for negotiations with companies covered by the agreement.

The 1.1% gross increase shall be individual and recurrent by 1 January 2020 at the latest.

End-of-year bonus for sales representatives

The sales representatives of this JC are entitled to an end-of-year bonus equal to 100% of the gross wage of December (= fixed wage + average of the commissions of the last 12 months, if any), capped to 2,129.47 EUR.

As from the calendar year 2019 and for the end-of-year bonus payable in 2020, this cap will be increased by 1.1% gross.

End-of-career jobs

A worker who, from the age of 55, switches from a continuous regime or a fixed night shift to a day job (on the understanding that this might be an end-of-career job from the age of 58), shall temporarily and partially retain his shift bonus, according to the following terms and conditions:

Seniority in the company in a continuous regime or a fixed night shift

Partly retained shift bonus

10 years of seniority

During 2 months: 50 %

Subsequent month: 25 %

20 years of seniority

During 4 months: 50 %

Subsequent 2 months: 25 %

30 years of seniority

During 6 months: 50 %

Subsequent 3 months: 25 %

Subsistence security

As from 1 July 2019, the additional unemployment allowance shall be 11 EUR/day of partial unemployment.

Scheme of unemployment with corporate allowance (RCC/SWT)

Remark: The provisions relating to RCC/SWT apply to all workers who are bound to their employer under an employment contract for non-manual workers.

For the period from 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2021, the manual workers of this JC are entitled to:

  • RCC/SWT from the age of 59 years after an occupational history of 40 years;
  • RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after a an occupational history of 35 years in an arduous occupation;
  • RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after an occupational history of 33 years in an arduous occupation. This system only exists in those companies that agree to it at their level, by concluding an opt-in agreement or a CBA in the company.

For the period from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2020 (if possible extended to 30 June 2021), there is also a right to RCC/SWT for disabled workers and workers with serious physical problems:

  • from the age of 58
  • after an occupational history of 35 years as a salaried worker.

Time credit and end-of-career jobs

Remark: The provisions relating to time credit shall apply to all workers who are bound to their employer under an employment contract for non-manual workers.

Half-time and full-time time credit with motive

For workers with 5 years of seniority in the company, the right to half-time and full-time time credit is extended to:

  • 51 months for the motive of care;
  • 36 months for the motive of training.

Employment in shifts

For full-time workers working in shifts, the company can, taking into account the good organisation of work, determine the concrete terms for the application of the 1/5th time credit.

End-of-career job without benefits

Manual workers with an occupational history of at least 28 years who want to reduce their career by 1 day or 2 half days/week (within the framework of the right of older workers to end-of-career jobs without benefits) can do so from the age of 50.

Switch to RCC/SWT

If a worker switches from time credit to a form of RCC/SWT, the additional allowance shall be calculated on the basis of a full-time wage. This additional allowance shall be prorated in proportion to the periods of full-time and part-time employment over the entire occupational history of the worker.

Remark: The 4 points above are valid for the period from 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2021.

End-of-career jobs with benefits

For the period from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2020 (as soon as possible extended to 30 June 2021), workers with a long occupational history or arduous profession are entitled to:

  • a 1/5 end-of career job with benefits as from the age of 55;
  • a half-time end-of career job with benefits as from the age of 57.

Incentive bonuses

The system of regional incentives is extended from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2021.

Training

Feasible and workable work

The inter-professional objective of an average of 5 days of training per full-time equivalent per year (within the framework of feasible and workable work) is concretised by the sectoral training effort of an average of 4 days per year per full-time equivalent. All companies must contribute to this.

Extension of the financing of the training fund

The financing of 0.20 % on gross wages is extended.

Social Security Fund

Trade union bonus

The contribution to the Social Security Fund for the 2019 service year increases from 50 EUR to 55 EUR per worker.

For the service year 2020, this amount shall be further increased to 60 EUR per worker.

Employment certificates

The Social Security Fund is empowered to send employment certificates.

Duration

This national agreement is valid from 1 January 2019 until 31 December 2020, unless otherwise specified.

More information

This sector agreement will only become final after publication on the website of the FPS Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue. We will keep you informed.

Source: CBA concluded on 26 June 2019 in the Joint Committee for the non-manual workers from the chemical industry regarding the National Agreement 2019-2020.