The FNV trade union federation has lost the first round of its battle to have the new civil service pay deal overturned.
The FNV went to court to have the deal for 800,000 civil servants declared invalid because it, as the country’s biggest trade union group, was not part of the negotiations.
The deal was signed between the government and smaller unions in July. The FNV represents 56% of civil servants.
The deal includes a 5% pay increase over two years and a one-off bonus payment of €500. However, the FNV argues that the pay rise is made up of a 2.28% rise plus 2.2% from changes to the pension premiums which may affect eventual pension payouts.
It eventually pulled out of the discussions.
The court in The Hague ruled that both employers and other unions had held a ‘realistic and open dialogue’ and that the FNV itself opted to leave the talks.
The FNV said in a reaction to the verdict that it would appeal. Several other unions, including the police unions, are campaigning against the agreement as well.