Separately on Thursday, the Garda Representative Association (GRA) representing rank-and-file Gardaí said it would urge its 10,400 members to accept the proposed new agreement in a forthcoming ballot.

Under the terms of the proposed agreement, about 250,000 State employees will receive pay improvements of between 6.2 per cent and 7.4 per cent over three years.

A further 50,000 civil and public service staff recruited since 2013 and who have a less generous pension scheme will receive pay improvements of 7 per cent and 10 per cent over the same period.

About 23,000 State employees such as Gardaí, military personnel and prison officers, who have faster-accruing pensions than other groups, will benefit least from the proposed new agreement.