In Spain, the federal government seeks to go a weekly discount in working hours | EUROtoday

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Spanish Minister of Social Economy, Yolanda Diaz, at the Congress in Madrid, May 30, 2024.

For the third time for the reason that begin of the yr, employers, unions and the Spanish Ministry of Labor held a gathering on Thursday, May 30, to debate the federal government's plan to scale back working hours. Currently set at 40 hours per week, it might enhance to 38.5 hours this yr and to 37.5 hours in 2025, with no discount in wage. It is a measure “of the 21ste century “, declared the Minister of Labor, Yolanda Diaz, from the Sumar party (radical left). Rather than ” live to work »,Mme Diaz suggests having “time to walk, to study, to be with loved ones”. Ultimately, its goal is to open negotiations sector by sector, with a purpose to proceed this discount as much as 35 hours, and even 32 hours, per week.

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However, on Thursday the assembly once more ended with out progress. Not solely have the unions failed to achieve an settlement with employers, who imagine that the problem should be addressed sector by sector and negotiated throughout the framework of collective agreements, however the measure will nonetheless must go the filter of the Congress of Deputies, the place a number of parliamentary allies important to the federal government have already expressed reluctance, such because the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV, conservative).

“We will devote all our efforts to reducing working hours, the duration of which has been frozen for more than forty years”, insisted, on May 30, the Secretary of State for Labor, Joaquin Perez, who needs to finish an settlement earlier than the summer time. Nearly 12 million staff within the non-public sector may benefit from this measure, in keeping with a examine by the union federation of Workers' Commissions, significantly in trade and building. In the civil service, however, working time is already 37.5 hours. Furthermore, many sectors have negotiated a 38-hour week as a part of their collective settlement. According to Eurostat, essentially the most frequent weekly working hours in Spain in 2022 was 37.7, in comparison with the European common of 36.6 hours.

Low productiveness downside

“As history shows, freeing up free time means increasing productivity, consumption and economic activity in general”underlined Mr. Perez. For Lorenzo Amor, vice-president of the Spanish Confederation of Entrepreneurial Organizations, it is very important decelerate “the increase in absenteeism” and D'“increase productivity first”.

Spain has had an issue of low productiveness for a very long time, specifically because of the lack of worker coaching and funding in technological modernization, or the burden of the tourism, lodge and building sectors in GDP. . According to an OECD report, productiveness measured in GDP per hour labored was in Spain, in 2022, at 53 {dollars} (48.6 euros), in comparison with 61 {dollars} on common within the euro zone.

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