SIPTU has voted to back the Haddington Road Agreement on public sector pay and conditions.

Members of the country’s largest trade unions voted 76% to 24% in favour of the proposals.

SIPTU Vice-President Patricia King said the union welcomed the result of the ballot.

She said: "We now hope that we can move on to implementing the reform process in order to improve the services for those who depend on them while protecting the jobs, terms and conditions of those who provide them."

Earlier this week, members of the Irish National Teachers' Organisation also voted to back the proposals.

The Government is aiming to reduce the public service pay bill by €1bn.

"From the point of view of the Government exiting the bailout this is a really significant landmark," said Bill Roche, Professor of Industrial Relations at UCD.