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Reforms a national imperative

21/01/2016 13:29
The reform of the public sector is a national imperative and the government hopes that the parliament will speed up procedures for the enactment and implementation of the six bills that were submitted last August.

The Secretary to the President Konstantinos Petrides speaking this morning on state radio said that it takes a long time to implement all systems affected by the reform and modernization of the public sector.

He urged that the bills are brought to the plenary, before the parliament suspends its work for May elections, while at the same time he noted that he understands that the parliament has a heavy workload.

"The sustainability of public finances which is nothing but respect for the taxpayer must be ensured. We must have certainty as regards the state payroll" he stressed.

He added that "in 2016 the government will implement bills including more development reform and will accelerate public processes to fight bureaucracy".

He noted that these bills are about meritocracy, transparent recruitment procedures in the public sector, promotions and a proper evaluation system.

Referring to the bill on the state payroll Mr. Petrides noted that there cannot be budgetary plans, plans relating to the reduction of taxes, plans to abolish the special levy, if what is provided by the state payroll is not ensured as a last safeguard to the sustainability of public fiscals.

He explained that wage increases should be linked to the rate of growth and that reckless recruitments or excessive benefits will not be possible. “We must not return to the previous situation" he stressed.

"If we really want to change things, these bills should be adopted and implemented. The public sector reform is a national imperative. I hope that the parliament during the discussion of the bills will approach the whole effort under this spirit ", the Secretary to the President noted.

With respect to other objectives in relation to the modernization of the public sector, Mr. Petrides said that there will be a focus on e-governance aiming at technological upgrading.

"We have already recorded 1,500 procedures relating to citizens' transactions with government which will be codified and digitalized, to be able to effectively implement corporate governance and increase services offered to citizens electronically. These are things to come in 2016"he noted.

Finally, he stressed that the country needs a national strategy and suggested that the state should take responsibility not only to promote but also to develop a unified strategy.