The new 40-hour working week for Greek public-sector staff will be launched after the majority return from their summer holidays next Tuesday, after the August 15 bank holiday. A circular ordering the implementation of the new working week was sent out by Administration Reform and e-Government Minister Dimitris Reppas on Thursday.
The working week has been increased from 37.5 hours to 40, making it the same as that in the private sector, and applies to all permanent staff in the civil service and local authorities (except in  cases where special regulations call for shorter work hours, such as for staff in sanitation).
It is also hoped that the additional work hours will help increase the productivity of services that come into direct and daily contact with the public.
The public will have access to all public-sector services and local authority services between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. with the exception of tax offices, that will be open to the public until 2:30 p.m.
Citizens' Service Centres with three more more permanent employees will operate from 8:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. on weekdays and from 8:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays.
Public-sector workers will also have staggered time-tables, that they applied for until August 8. There are now five different working shifts, starting at half-hour intervals between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. and ending at half-hour intervals between 3:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.