Posted by on 22 Jun 2012. Filed under Current Affairs, Top news. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Government To Cancel Two Holidays to Boost Deficit

The government is making progress with its plan to cancel at least two national holidays to help boost the Slovak economy by an additional two days of GDP production, as a decision has finally been taken as to which two extra days we will have to work.

Smer-SD one-party government (c) The Daily.sk

The dilemma was which holidays to cancel, but a decision was finally made on the cancellation of Constitution Day (1 September) and Our Lady of Sorrows (15 September). The cancellation of the religious holiday has, of course, not gone down too well with the Christian democratic KDH party and religious leaders.

Yesterday Robert Fico told representatives of the Catholic church that the holiday should be moved to Sunday, which effectively means its cancellation and so there would be no need to open up the treaty that the Slovak Republic concluded with the Holy See. The church is very defensive of all its holidays, though, and 15 September is also the date that the Vatican ordained the Virgin Mary as the patron saint of Slovakia back in 1927.

At present there are a total of eleven religious holidays respected in Slovakia, with just 7 national holidays (bank holidays).

13 Comments for “Government To Cancel Two Holidays to Boost Deficit”

  1. I recon Fico’s gunning for two bank holidays but will settle for one, then everyone will think how benevolent, and caring he is !!! uvidíme…

  2. marek

    No hope for a pisshead of a country. Fico is an (ex) Communist and does not have any need, nor capability, to debate anyone of any clout. The rest of the EU reps don’t bother and treat SK as the red headed long lost step child, and these guys know this. SK is on its own all while Fico & Co get the majority of votes. Amazing ignorance in this place.

  3. Dave Crawford

    An interesting article in SME and on the news last night about the incidence of alcoholism in the SK. A figure of 400,000 was quoted in both articles. It would be interesting to know what the true cost of alcohol abuse / dependancy is in this country – not only in terms of lost production but also in the cost to the general population for the emergency services and health care, alcohol related crime and the continued carnage on the roads, etc.
    BnM and his crew may like to take a look at these figures and take some action such as increasing the govt duty on booze substantialy. It may not have any effect on those already addicted but it may become a financial deterent to others following the same path and generate much needed revenue. The only growth business I have witnessed in my time here is the pub industry which has saturated the market. Within a radius of 100m of my home which is in a residential area close to the town centre we have 18 bars with another two under construction and five shops selling booze with at least one more hoping to do the same. Some of the bars have gone bust numerous times in the last 3 years – one is in its 6th reincarnation – often with debts that have yet to be recovered including unpaid staff wages. The opening hours are ridiculous, many are open till 4 – 5 am and one only closes for two hours a day!, these late opening bars attract all the town riffraff, unemployed and alcoholics and a fair number of punters who leave the pub to go straight to work. I am all for relaxed opening hours but there has to be some commonsense, especially during the working week.
    Reducing the number of holidays will have no effect on GDP when some of the population can and do get steaming any day of the week.

  4. Dave Crawford

    Shades of Animal Farm without doubt.
    Increase GDP? – It may increase production in the manufacturing sector but I can’t see the idle wasters in state offices doing anything worthwhile.
    Holiday reform would be a good move – like move them all to a Monday or Friday rather than having them on specific dates which often fall mid-week.
    Wages reform would probably have more effect – workers obliged to stay behind at work without pay, attend work at weekend and on holidays with no enhancements or only paid for full hours worked are not the most enthusiastic or productive.
    Mandatory payslips – so workers can actually check their wages.
    Prompt payment of wages – why in this day and age must many workers wait upto 4 weeks for their previous months pay?

  5. George M

    Anything that pisses off lazy Slovaks and the KDH Catholic church has my vote .

  6. David

    @Ludwig>
    So, Slovakia wants to compete with Romania? Is that why it joined the EU? Hardly a way to increase the quality of life!

    One of the few things that Slovakia could boast was the number of public holidays it had. Now they won’t even have that. They will have nothing. Slovakia should be sorting out its infrastructure (not just physical but in its institutional thinking and attitude), not finding ways to compete with Romania.

    As a note, the reason I don’t employ people full-time is because of Slovakia’s employment laws. Changing a couple of public holidays is not going to change that. Appropriate changes in employment law would show a much better return: much lower unemployment, higher quality of life, higher competitiveness, increased tax revenue, less public expenditure, better attitude from workers. Playing with public holidays is just wasting time.

  7. Ludwig

    David – “Wages in Slovakia are not comparable to those in most of Europe, so the two days extra GDP will make little difference to actual business investment in jobs”

    NOT TRUE, have you tried comparing SK salaries with hungarians, romanian, bulgarian ones? (just as example). Moreover, you should compare SK salaries with the rest of the world, not only Europe…

    “This is effectively a wage cut as bank holidays are already factored in to calculations of pay and profitability”

    NOPE, not a pay cut, but companies will pay the same for 2 more days of work. Thus, benefit for the employer and, by reflection, the employee.
    Because I hope you understand what’s the main reason companies have relocated here…

  8. David

    This is effectively a wage cut as bank holidays are already factored in to calculations of pay and profitability. Wages in Slovakia are not comparable to those in most of Europe, so the two days extra GDP will make little difference to actual business investment in jobs. The main aim is to increase government revenue. Public holidays is just an easy target.

  9. Ludwig

    I’m actually positively surprised (afraid it will be the only time with this government though)

    EXPAT – September are NOT the first bank holidays on the list: there is 5th July and 29th August first. Slovakia has a ridiculously high amount of bank/public holidays Moreover, this year both 1st and 15th September fall on a Saturday.

    Mike – this is actually a right step if you want to keep companies here that are paying a salary.

  10. Christian

    Copying the Danish initiative I see.. Typical social democrats, why the heck would taking holidays help GDP, when there is anyway no demand for bigger output?!?!?!

  11. Ian McLeod

    I work for a company who do not have public holidays and we work Christmas and New Years day.

  12. Splendid. The state takes away things that actually matter (e.g. free time) to people and replaces them with … what? GDP?

    Here’s Robert F. Kennedy, in 1968, commenting on just how bleeding wrong this is:

    “Too much and too long, we seem to have surrendered community excellence and community values in the mere accumulation of material things. Our gross national product … if we should judge America by that – counts air pollution and cigarette advertising, and ambulances to clear our highways of carnage. It counts special locks for our doors and the jails for those who break them. It counts the destruction of our redwoods and the loss of our natural wonder in chaotic sprawl. It counts napalm and the cost of a nuclear warhead, and armored cars for police who fight riots in our streets. It counts Whitman’s rifle and Speck’s knife, and the television programs which glorify violence in order to sell toys to our children.

    “Yet the gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages; the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom nor our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile. And it tells us everything about America except why we are proud that we are Americans.”

  13. EXPAT

    Great, take a few more days from my yearly holiday schedule! But why both in September? These are the first holidays to come! Will it be mandated this year? Suppose they just fliped through a Slovak Calendar and found the first two days that will be a Bank Holiday! Well done FICO…why not just have the government work 6 days a week instead! Reduce the salaries to be closer to normal working people in Slovakia, pay taxes like the rest of us and stop cutting out benifits and rights!!! This just SUCKS!!!!!

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