He reiterates the need to raise the salary, because one cannot live “with dignity” with 1,545 euros per month


The second vice president and Minister of Labor and Social Economy, Yolanda Díaz, has set the objective of the Spanish labor market to converge with the employment rate of 70% of the European averages.

“If we have done it with temporality, I think that now the time has come to take a qualitative leap and do it with employment, in such a way that since we are four points below that rate, [we] work on it as a country objective” , indicated the head of Labor at the closing of the Cinco Días conference on ‘The economic future of Spain’.

Likewise, Díaz has stressed that the second “great challenge” of the economy is to improve salaries and not just the minimum wage, because the median salary in Spain is 1,545 euros per month and this “does not allow us to live with dignity.”

“Not only does it not allow you to live with dignity in Madrid, Barcelona or Seville, it is that in any town in Galicia you cannot live with dignity with 1,545 euros either,” he stressed.

Thus, he recalled that the negative salary differential with respect to Europe is 20%, so in this matter also “we must be European” and raise salaries in the country.

For Díaz, the increase in profit margins in some sectors and the drop in energy prices that has already occurred “have grown” to achieve a salary increase “that is not inflationary.”

“There is room to address it,” added the head of Labor, who recalled that the real average salary has been “practically frozen” in Spain for 30 years, while in the economies of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has increased by more than 30% throughout this period.

“We have shown that by raising salaries, that by raising the minimum wage, the economy is doing much better, we collect more, we have a more solid, more robust public pension system and, furthermore, life is better because people logically have more resources,” he stated.

On the other hand, Díaz has conveyed the need to continue restricting inequality in Spain, for which the Multiple Effects Public Income Indicator (Iprem) must be raised because it is not “coherent” to continue raising the minimum wage, while “people who need it most, have the Iprem frozen”.

Likewise, she has conveyed the need to develop a universal benefit for dependent children of 200 euros per month, since, in the opinion of the head of Labor, it is one of the “great tools” to close the gap in inequality.

Along these lines, he recalled that a few days ago Brussels endorsed the Government’s fiscal projections and increased the country’s economic growth, which is why he has asked to “land the macroeconomic projections at the micro level and in people’s real lives” and not fall into “triumphalism.”

During her speech at the event, the Minister of Labor assured that reducing the negative differential in relation to the productivity of Spain with the rest of Europe is also an issue that must be addressed through the “necessary reforms.”

However, he has stressed that from 1995 to the present, productivity has grown above 15% and salaries, in real terms, at 8%, which is why we must act on this “deeply unfair distribution” to What Díaz has pointed out is that it is necessary to address the reduction of working time, although the average working day included in collective agreements in Spain is set at 38.5 hours per week.

For Díaz, addressing this challenge involves, among other measures, increasing the size of Spanish companies, as well as their investment and presence in sectors with greater added value. As well as improving the training and qualification of its workers.

Furthermore, he indicated that to increase productivity, precariousness must also be reduced, for which he recalled the coalition Government’s commitment to create the Productivity Council, a recommendation of the European Commission since 2016, which he assured will inaugurate “in the coming times” together with the Minister of Economy, Carlos Body.

“There is a lot to correct in terms of productivity. I think that increasing productivity in our country is a challenge,” he added, while ensuring that the negative productivity differential in Europe in relation to the “sandwich we have between Washington and China” is an issue that also “concerns” the European Union.