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Juncker reflects on 2011's outcomes
Economics

Juncker reflects on 2011's outcomes

14.03.2012 From our online archive
The Tripartite was not a failure according Luxembourg's leader, who spoke candidly about the end-of-year controversial negotiations which ended in a stalemate.

The Tripartite was not a failure according Luxembourg's leader, who spoke candidly about the end-of-year controversial negotiations which ended in a stalemate.

In an interview with the Luxemburger Wort, Jean-Claude Juncker rebuffed criticism that key meetings between unions, business heads and governments failed because of poor negotiating skills on the part of the government.

Opposition deputies have widely blamed ministers for failing to secure a resolution when three major unions refused to attend the final Tripartite meeting in December.

The government did, however, go on to reach a decision based on earlier input given by the unions, prompting a move to limit the indexation of salaries to a once per year occurrence.

Mr Juncker did concede that policy needed to become more consistent, particularly with regard to the index, an inflation-linked increase which many business heads believe makes Luxembourg less attractive to new companies.

The Prime Minister was confident, however, that the final decision made would reduce the wage bills of companies during the next three years, thus improving competitivity.

Luxembourg residents can also expect to see a little more of their Prime Minister as of next summer. The eurozone will see a dramatic change in the way it is run when the lead role becomes a full-time post from June 2012. As current eurozone chief, Mr Juncker reassured journalists that he had no plans to hang up his Prime Minister hat, suggesting he will not apply for the role.

Read the full interview with Jean-Claude Juncker in German in Friday's Luxemburger Wort.