Workers who qualify for a 13th month salary will receive their dues starting January 14, finance minister Jean-Paul Adam has said.
He was giving details of the new scheme to journalist Michael Payet during last night’s News Xtra programme on Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) TV.
Minister Adam explained that the reason for making the payment in January is because most workers are paid earlier than usual in December and they spend a lot during the festive season as families get together.
He added that this is a big boost to families at this point in time and also for the economy as there is always a slowdown in January after December shopping spree.
The minister also explained that all public sector workers who are not on contract qualify for the 13th month salary.
“This also applies for workers of parastatals which get a budget from government. Parastatals which do not get a budget from government and which had a bonus or 13th month salary structure in place, will proceed along the same line. If I take the example of STC (Seychelles Trading Company), it is paying a 14th month salary to all its workers. The workers have received their 13th month salary and because STC has made good profit, they have been paid a 14th month salary based on their performance. STC has kept its bonus structure which is even better than the 13th month salary scheme that has just been put in place. Seypec (Seychelles Petroleum Company) also had its 13th month salary scheme,” said Minister Adam.
He added: “We also have public companies like SPTC (Seychelles Public Transport Company) which are partly subsidised by government and their workers will get the 13th month salary because special arrangements have been made by government depending on their circumstances.”
The minister pointed out that the board of directors of Air Seychelles, for example, has also decided to pay their staff the 13th month salary.
“For Seypec, STC and Air Seychelles, the money for the payment of the 13th month salary does not come form the government’s budget. Seypec and STC already had their 13th month salary scheme in place, while for Air Seychelles it is a decision taken by the company based on the reality of what the government is proposing,” explained Mr Adam.
He added that the same thing applies for IOT (Indian Ocean Tuna) in which the Seychelles government has 40% shares.
“We have negotiated with our shareholders to make sure that IOT employees also benefit from the 13th month salary scheme,” he said, adding that it is the government’s wish that workers of the private sector are also rewarded under this scheme and that throughout the year 2016 there will be discussions with private companies on this matter.
“It is important to note that certain private companies also have their bonus scheme and the government has shared with them what it is putting into application. We will work with the private sector to come up with a set of criteria that will be used by all sectors as right now there are different models being used,” Mr Adam noted.
The minister explained that it is going to cost the government R97 million in 2016 to make payment under the 13th month salary scheme and this include payment for home carers, people working with maintenance contractors and for cleaning services as they are all paid through the budget.
“Because this represents a lot of money, this is why workers who are on PSC contracts will only get their 13th month salary in 2017, while Constitutional appointees will not benefit under this scheme,” said Mr Adam.
The minister reminded that like for every bonus, the 15% PIT (personal income tax) will be paid, but this will not be applicable for the first R10,000. For example if someone’s salary is R10,100 he/she will pay income tax on R100 only.
Meanwhile, finance and trade principal secretary Patrick Payet has added that parastatals which had been paying bonuses to their employees can choose to give them a 13th month salary or rather a 14th month salary, but they can also do so depending on the organisation’s profitability.
Source : Seychelles NATION