On 19 June 2019, the social partners of Joint Committee (JC) 226 for non-manual workers of the international trade, transport and logistics have concluded a protocol agreement for 2019 and 2020. As stipulated in the Royal Decree of 24 April 2019 implementing Article 7 § 1 of the Act of 26 July 1996 on the promotion of employment and the preventative safeguarding of competitiveness, this agreement complies with the maximum negotiating envelope of 1.1% in 2019 and 2020.
Below, you will find a brief overview of the main subjects of the sector agreement. A detailed analysis will be included in our sectoral information.
Provisions with an impact on wages
Increase in purchasing power 2019-2020
As from 1 July 2019, the actual wages, scales and ‘in-house scales’ will go up by 1.1%.
With effect from 01 February 2020:
- the employer’s contribution to the cost of the transport ticket for non-manual workers who come to work by bus, metro, tram (TEC/De Lijn, STIB/MIVB) or Waterbus will be increased up to 80%. It is recommended that companies use a third party payment scheme, where possible.
- the bicycle allowance will be increased from 0.23 to 0.24 EUR/km.
The social partners recommend the introduction of the mobility budget at company level.
Temporary agency work
For employment contracts concluded as from 1 July 2019, employment as a temporary agency worker performed in a period of 24 months and immediately prior to the conclusion of an employment contract in the same company is taken into account for the determination of the wage-scale seniority.
Leave, short-term absence and regional leave days
Sectoral leave days
As from 1 January 2020, the sectoral leave days included in articles 2, 5 § 1 and 13 of the CBA of 30 June 2015 relating to leave, short-term absence and regional leave days (reg. No. 128.581) can be converted into an equivalent financial benefit, provided that a number of cumulative conditions are met.
Temporary agency work
For employment contracts concluded as from 1 July 2019, the employment as a temporary agency worker performed in the 24 months immediately preceding the conclusion of the employment contract in the same company is taken into account for the calculation of the seniority leave.
Youth holidays (as of holiday qualifying year 2019 - youth holidays 2020)
Full-time non-manual workers taking up youth holidays are entitled to an additional premium (on top of the ONem/RVA benefit) of 30 EUR/day.
The employer pays this premium and can claim it back from the Social Fund.
The non-manual worker is entitled to an absence of 5 days in case of decease of his spouse, a child, his father or mother.
Contribution to the Social Fund
In the 4th quarter of 2019:
- the employer's contribution for groups at risk is set at 0.10 %;
- the employer's contribution to the social fund of 0.4% will not be collected.
From the 1st quarter of 2020 until the 4th quarter of 2020, the employer's contribution to the social fund is set at 0.50 % (including the contribution for groups at risk).
Scheme of unemployment with corporate allowance (RCC/SWT)
The following unemployment schemes with corporate allowance will apply for the 2019-2020 period:
- RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after an occupational history of 33 years, of which 5 (7) years in heavy and arduous professions in the last 10 (15) years or 20 years of night work;
- RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after an occupational history of 35 years in a heavy and arduous profession;
- RCC/SWT from 59 years with a long occupational history of 40 years.
From 1 January 2021 up to 30 June 2021, the following time credit types will exist:
- RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after an occupational history of 33 years, of which 5 years (7 years) in a heavy and arduous profession in the last 10 years (15 years) or 20 years of night work;
- RCC/SWT from 59 years after an occupational history of 35 years in a heavy and arduous profession;
- RCC/SWT from the age of 59 after an occupational history of 40 years.
Wind-down time jobs and time credit
Time credit with motive
Non-manual workers are also entitled to:
- maximum 51 months full-time or half-time time credit for the provision of care;
- maximum 36 months full-time or half-time time credit for following a training course.
Both periods together may not exceed 51 months.
Wind-down time jobs
Workers with a long occupational history or heavy and arduous profession are entitled to:
- 1/5 wind-down time job with benefits as from the age of 55;
- half-time wind-down time job with benefits as from the age of 57.
Wind-down time jobs without benefits remain possible for workers from the age of 50 after an occupational history of 28 years.
For reductions by 1/5th
- The age to benefit from a supplementary premium of EUR 80 gross/month is maintained at the age of 60 (National Labour Council CBA No. 103).
- Non-manual workers who reduce their working hours by 1/5th within the framework of the NLC CBA No. 137 or art. 8 § 3, 2nd indent of the NLC CBA No. 103 (1/5th time credit without benefits from the age of 50 and after an occupational history of at least 28 years) are entitled to a supplementary premium of EUR 80 gross/month from the age of 55.
- From 1 January 2020, the additional premium of EUR 80 will be indexed once to EUR 90 gross/month.
Reducing the working hours by 1/5th
With effect from 01 January 2020:
- workers can benefit from a supplementary premium of EUR 100 gross/month from the age of 57 (instead of 55);
- the supplementary premium of EUR 100 will be indexed once to EUR 110 gross/month;
- the supplementary premium will be granted until the end of the half-time career break.
Threshold of 7 %
The threshold = 7 %.
Non-manual workers aged 55 and over who benefit from a 1/5th time credit or aged 57 years and older who reduce their working hours by half are not taken into account for the application of the threshold.
This Protocol Agreement will enter into force on 1 January 2019 for a period of two years.
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: Protocol agreement 2019-2020 of 19.06.2019