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Sector agreement PC 200: higher wages and bicycle allowance

03 November 2021 Annelies Bries Employers

A draft sector agreement for the years 2021-2022 was drawn up in the General Joint Committee for Employees (PC 200). The PC 200 includes more than 50,000 employers, together employing more than 400,000 white-collar workers. Once the agreement is concluded, it will therefore have an impact on many employers. Here you can read which agreements are on the table.

Signed up with the Acerta Payroll Company office? Then you will receive a more detailed communication with the possibilities and the expected actions.

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Pay rise of 0.4%

Effective 1 December 2021, the minimum wage scales and real gross monthly wages increase by 0.4%. For employees paid according to the minimum wage scales, a conversion to an equivalent benefit is not possible.

The increase in real gross monthly wages can be granted through an effective salary increase and/or other benefits of equivalent purchasing power. The following principles apply:

  • once-off premiums are charged on the 0.4% if you have already paid them or will pay them in the period 2021-2022;
  • the gross salary increase of 0.4% or the equivalent benefit must be recurrent as from 1 January 2023 at the latest. This means that this increase must be granted permanently after this date;
  • the total cost (gross + employers' social security contributions) of the actual wage increase and/or other benefits is charged at 0.4%;
  • annual salary increases based on professional experience and/or seniority are not counted in the 0.4%

If you want to work with an equivalent benefit for the increase of the real gross monthly wages, then this needs to be discussed:

  • in companies with a trade union delegation, an agreement must be reached for this by 30 November 2021 at the latest;
  • in companies without a trade union delegation, it is sufficient for you to inform your employees individually and in writing about the application of the equivalent benefit by 30 November 2021 at the latest.

Corona premium of 125 or 250 euros

No later than 31 December 2021, a one-time corona premium must be granted to employees employed in companies that generated sufficiently large sales and profits in 2019 and 2020. The corona premium amounts to:

  • 125 euros if the turnover of the company has increased by at least 5% and a profit has been made in 2019 and 2020;
  • 250 euros if the turnover of the company has increased by at least 10% and a profit has been made in 2019 and 2020.

If a corona premium has already been granted at company level, it must be deducted from these amounts.

Bicycle allowance of 0.20 euros per kilometre travelled

As from 1 January 2022, the amount of the annual gross limit for the private transport allowance will increase from EUR 27,750 to EUR 29,680.

As of 1 July 2022, the bicycle allowance will be increased from 0.10 to 0.20 euro per kilometre actually travelled by bicycle with a maximum of 8 euro (max. 40 km there and back) per working day.

Year end bonus

To be eligible for the end-of-year bonus, seniority of at least 6 months is required. The sector clarifies that the period of employment as a temporary worker is also taken into account provided that:

  • the recruitment follows the period of temporary employment;
  • the position held by the employee is similar to the one he held as a temporary worker.

Any period of inactivity of 7 days or less counts as a period of employment as a temporary worker.

The other rules regarding the end-of-year bonus, such as the possibility of converting it into an equivalent benefit, remain unchanged.

Temporary annual premium of sector agreement 2019-2020 remains in place

The 2019-2020 industry agreement provided for a temporary annual premium equal to a gross monthly salary x 15.31% for certain employees, to be awarded in December to employees employed on 1 September 2019. This premium had to be paid until a pension plan was provided for white-collar workers that was at least equivalent to the supplementary pension of blue-collar workers employed in the same business activity.

The industry gave itself time until 31 December 2022 to develop an equivalent pension plan. Failing that, this temporary premium would be paid until December 2024. The deadline to reach an equivalent pension plan is now extended to 31 December 2024. If no settlement has been reached by that date, this temporary premium will be paid until December 2029.

Telework and deconnection

For the time being, the sector is not developing a sectoral framework for the introduction of telework, but it does encourage you as an employer to do this after consultation within your company, should you implement telework.

You haven't had a conversation about disconnection yet? The sector advises you to discuss this in the Committee for Prevention and Protection at Work, and to raise awareness about the risks of excessive connectivity.

Other changes

In addition to increasing salaries and the bicycle allowance, the agreements on SWT (the former early retirement pension) and time credit were extended, taking into account current legislation. The agreements made in the agreement for 2019-2020 on the number of days of training that an employer must grant, were confirmed.

Go for an optimal remuneration

To help you provide the best option for your employees and yourself in the context of increasing purchasing power and granting end-of-year bonuses, Acerta Consult offers individual guidance on how to calculate and/or choose the best benefit to consider.

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Written by Annelies Bries

Legal advisor at Acerta

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