Published on November 16th, 2007 | by Babar Bhatti33
PTCL Voluntary Separation Scheme Announced
Details of Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS) at PTCL have emerged with information also provided at PTCL site which puts it like this in Urdu: Aap Ki Hidmat Ka Etraf (We recognise your services).
Total cost is about Rs 35 billion, out of which 50 per cent amount will be paid by the good old Government of Pakistan. The intended / eligible target of VSS are PTCL employees who are not over 58 years of age – probably management does not consider them relevant to the latest technology and strategy. According to insiders, this scheme works well for those who are relatively new at PTCL. As I have written before, if PTCL management handles this well, then this could be good for both the company and its employees in the long run. Business Recorder provides more information.
The government has imposed ban on re-employment of those employees of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) who will opt for Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS), informed sources told Business Recorder.
“The Ministry of Information Technology will ensure that optees who are granted voluntary separation will not be re-employed by PTCL,” the sources quoted Cabinet Committee on Privatisation (CCoP) as giving directions to the Privatisation Commission.
The sources said that GoP share of VSS would be available to only those optees who apply within 60 days of the launching of the scheme. Under the Sale Purchase Agreement (SPA) and Share Holders Agreement (SHA) between GoP and Etisalat International Pakistan (EIP), the new management of PTCL has the right to offer voluntary retirement or departure to the employment and GoP was committed to pay 50 percent gross expenses.
Prior to its privatisation, PTCL had also signed an agreement with the CBA unions providing for VSS for employees. The PTCL-specific VSS developed by consultants was approved by the company’s board and was placed for discussions in a series of meetings of the PC board, Ministries of Information Technology, Finance and Privatisation held between 14 and 24 September 2007.
The scheme was projected to cost Rs 34.858 billion, assuming that 60 percent of the employees avail this package. The share of GoP will be Rs 17.429 billion to be paid out of the privatisation proceeds.
About two months proposed time for acceptance of the package by the employees, the sources said that PTCL may take its time in implementation of the scheme. However, the government would honour its commitment of sharing 50 per cent cost of VSS towards those employees who opt for the scheme within two months of its announcement, the sources added.
The sources said that the Ministry of Labour and Manpower had not been consulted while developing the scheme, adding that concerns were also expressed regarding rights of the PTCL contract workers. In response, it was pointed out that the VSS was a voluntary scheme for only the regular employees of PTCL and had nothing to do with the handsomely paid contract workers governed by separate rules.