On September 8, 2003 the Administrator signed an order implementing the new 11-tier salary scale for all Iraqi public employees. His action was based on the recommendation of a salary task force composed of Iraqi representatives from the various ministries.
This 11-tier scale replaces the temporary four-tier scale in effect since the collapse of the former regime. The actual date the scales take effect will depend on decisions made by the individual ministers.
The fundamental principle of the scale is that of equal pay for equal work. Actual salary is decided by the difficulty and complexity of the duties required of the employee.
This scale should be the same throughout the government, so that a computer operator at the Ministry of Public Works should earn the same as a computer operator at the Ministry of Justice.
In some cases the new scale will result in a decision that the grade assigned to a specific position would result in less pay for the person who now holds that position. That employee will be protected against a salary cut. In no case will any employee receive lower pay than he or she is now earning.
While the individual ministries will classify jobs according to the new scale, the Ministry of Finance will conduct a final review to make sure that there is enough money to pay all employees what they earn and that pay scales are uniform from ministry to ministry.
This system is important because it helps make government employment fairer. It means that ministers and other senior people cannot give secret bonuses or otherwise reward their friends and punish their enemies.
Starting these new salaries scales is an important step in making Iraq a fair and just place for all Iraqis—not just those with friends in high places.