March 29, 2023

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K. Hatzidakis in Liberal: The Minimum Wage Increase and Syriza’s Typo

If one sees passion and collie review to Syriza In government announcements about minimum wages, two things can be believed: Either He increases Which we introduced, workers are ruined. Either that, instead of an increase, we’ve given a decrease. It does not explain otherwise how it is possible to talk about a “significant drop in income”!

Before we see, however, why this criticism “contradicts” reality, let us see what is the credibility of those who exercise it: because Syriza and Mr. Tsipras, after They promised for workers bottom salary in 751 eurosfinally gave it 650 euros, And this with 4 years delay And shortly before the 2019 elections.

Nor are Syriza and Mr. Tsipras, who until last fall proposed a minimum wage of 800 euros, and now, when the GSEE proposed 826 euros, they have surpassed it with a proposal of 880 euros. I have no doubt that if Government Propose a minimum wage of 880 euros, and then they say: “Sorry, typo, we meant 980 euros”!

I don’t think any citizen deserves to be treated this way. in contrast So with Mr. Tsipras – and his well-known opposition practices – we moved on Tuesday salary He increases from the bottom salary.

We received it for 650 euros in 2019, with Double increase In 2022 it went to 713 euros, now we have increased it to 780 euros. A bigger increase actually if you take into account a decrease insurance Contributions up 4.4 points to date.

We do not celebrate. After all, this money belongs to the private sector. She is, however, single He increases where imposed from economic reality. significantly increased and completelywhich takes into account the growing needs of workers—amid imported inflation—and business flexibility.

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she says oppositionthat the prescribed increase Insufficient. Although we do not claim that the increase solves all the problems of workers, the fact is that workers at the minimum wage will see three more net wages in their pockets compared to 2019. This is due to the increase in annual net earnings from €7,667 in 2019 to €9, 336 € in 2023. That is an additional 1,669 € on an annual basis and a total increase of 21.8% in 2022 compared to 2019!

They say the increases do not make up for the losses due to inflation. The fact is that the three increases overlap increase it economic inflation: From 2019 to 2023, the consumer price index increased by 15.1%, while the minimum wage increased for the same period by 20%. That’s 5 percentage points more.

They say the increases do not cancel out workers’ reduced purchasing power. The fact is that our country, at the level of the European Union, is on the rise From the thirteenth to the tenth place to the minimum wage and From the eighteenth to the thirteenth in purchasing power (out of 22 countries with a minimum wage).

Even worse for her nihilistic opposition to Syriza:

According to PS ERGANI data, in 2022 minimum wages were paid to 585 thousand workers – 60 thousand workers less than in 2021. This is noteworthy because increases in minimum wage are usually accompanied by an increase in the number of workers who get paid with it. The fact that this did not happen indicates the dynamics of the economy. And it is in line with data showing that in 2022 compared to 2019 we have an increase in the average monthly wages of employees by 12.4%. Which is higher than the growth rate of inflation. For example, workers paid €1,000 and above were 23% more in 2022 than they were in 2019! Clearly, there is no doubt that wages need to go up further in Greece. But this data proves that our efforts are moving in exactly this direction.

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At the same time, Wages are increasing in Greece, while at the same time Unemployment goes down: from 17.5% in the summer of 2019 to 10.8% in January. I notice this for two reasons:

FirstlyBecause for the unemployed, there is no greater support for his income than finding a job. And the, secondly, Because the three years will be unfrozen, when unemployment drops below 10%. Reducing unemployment below 10% will, in turn, depend on the country’s trajectory from now on: on political stability and the messages that will be sent to the economy.

How did we get here? We have succeeded simply because the increases from 2019 onwards are consistent with the good trajectory of the economy: its competitiveness has improved and its recovery is expected to continue this year. Unemployment decreased. Taxes and insurance fees have been reduced. The licensing environment has been simplified and the message of seriousness and confidence has been sent to investors. So we are determined to combine development with social cohesion, and development with social gain.

We don’t cheat. We know more needs to be done for workers. At the level of curbing inflation (we are already subsidizing electricity bills, introducing fuel card and shopping card, increasing heating allowance, etc.) digital and green skills training, etc.).

This is why we are not satisfied. It would be easy to push for bigger increases, especially in the run-up to the election. However, to do so would be irresponsible as it would undermine the foundations of economic growth and ultimately lead to lower unemployment and higher wages. After all, workers and unemployed demand serious economic policy. Because only such a policy can become the basis of a social policy with results!

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