Interior minister Yiannis Ragoussis announced on Thursday that the ministry plans to take two significant initiatives for the modernisation of the public sector, productivity of the civil servants and improving services to the citizens, during a meeting with the presidium of the civil servants' umbrella federation ADEDY.

The first initiative will be an increase in the working hours by 2 1/2 hours weekly, from the current 37 1/2 hours to 40 hours per week, as is in effect in the private sector, while the second initiative is for certain vital services to be open to the public in the afternoons as well.

On the second proposed initiative, Ragoussis stressed that the ministry was not talking about a shift with a break between morning and afternoon hours, but a continuous shift. He said the new working hours for the services that will also be open in the afternoon will begin in October to enable employees to schedule their obligations.

Ragoussis said that with the above to proposals to the civil servants, he was calling on them to contribute to the national effort being made by all the Greeks to bring the country out of the crisis, and clarified that the initiatives were unrelated to the Memorandum and the troika.

ADEDY chief Spyros Papaspyros expressed reservations over the increased weekly working hours and the afternoon hours, although he acknowledged the ministry's desire for a frank dialogue.


PM confers with interior minister ahead of meeting with ADEDY reps


Prime minister George Papandreou had an early morning meeting on Thursday with interior minister Yannis Ragoussis, ahead of the premier's scheduled discussion with the presidium of the civil servants' umbrella federation ADEDY.