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Employers: Must keep minimum wages in check

Businesses want the minimum wage to be 50 percent. The average wage and not more than this amount, because, in their opinion, it is dangerous for the economy, especially in a crisis. On the other hand, according to the OPZZ union, this increase in the minimum wage is not too costly for companies, i.e. can be increased by reducing the tax wedge.

– In recent years, the minimum wage has been isolated from economic parameters, which are provided for in the Minimum Wage Act. By 2021, during the current crisis, its size should exceed 53 percent. Average pay. Thus, it will be more than 50 percent. Established by social consensus in previous years. The Entrepreneurs Council, which unites the nine employers’ organizations, believes this is an unfavorable and dangerous situation for the economy.

At the same time, entrepreneurs are happy that after the last restructuring of the government, the “work” and “economy” sectors have been merged into a single ministry. Previously, this work was under the Ministry of Family, Labor and Social Policy and now it is under the Ministry of Development, Labor and Technology headed by the Deputy Prime Minister. Jaroslav Govin.

– We hope that this will lead to well-balanced results in the process of determining the minimum wage – wrote the entrepreneur.

There must be a special provision in the rules regarding the minimum wage, which must be implemented in exceptional circumstances such as the economic crisis, the freezing of the minimum wage or its correction. For example, like the spending rule, there is the “exit section” that the government used precisely during the current crisis.

– Adjustment mechanisms should be taken into account in the context of adjusting economic growth, which is considered to have occurred recently, when the terms of the minimum wage were 3.7% instead of GDP growth. By 2020, we have recorded a recession of about 2.8% (preliminary CSO data since January) – entrepreneurs insist.

Last year, setting this position for 2021 caused a lot of controversy. The Social Dialogue Council, comprising the government, employers ‘unions and workers’ unions, failed to reach an agreement, and the government finally decided to raise the minimum wage from PLN 2,600 to PLN 2,800. As a reminder, the minimum wage in 2015 was PLN 1750 total.

According to entrepreneurs, the minimum wage mechanism should have a clearly defined goal in relation to the average wage in the economy, i.e. 50 percent. And ways to achieve this goal, as well as ways to prevent the “progress” of this goal (by 2021 this rate has increased to more than 53%).

However, the unions representing the employees believe that the data should show the increase in the profits of the companies in recent years and the employees should participate in it.

– We have always argued that this should always be at least 50 percent. We often hear the argument that the average wage and there is no justification for suppressing wage increases in Poland and that micro-enterprises will not sustain it. Of course, the situation is currently mentioned, because we have an epidemic, but the Federal Statistical Office report, which provides data until 2019, states that in the previous 5 years, the profits of these companies have increased by 53%, yet wages are only a dozen or more%, so including the minimum wage increase in small companies There is no room for a pay rise – says OPZZ chairman Andrzej Radjikovsky in an interview with Interia.

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– Unfortunately, we find that many Polish entrepreneurs want to retain a competitive advantage based on the low pay of employees, and not in implementing innovations. This is a risky approach, especially now that the EU is raising enormous funds under the reconstruction program. This is an opportunity for a technological leap, in fact in many industries, without some technological advancement, it is difficult to further increase wages. Weaving in the current formula is a path that can go nowhere, because in a moment it turns out that such companies can not withstand competition somehow – says Radzikovsky.

During the summer negotiations on the minimum wage for 2021, OPZZ demanded that the PLN reach 3,100, as promised earlier by the government, but also proposed an increase in the minimum wage, but not too much burden on entrepreneurs.

– With the tax wedge, the point is to work on increasing the minimum wage, because the employee does not live on the total wage, but the net wage. Simply put, what matters to him is how much he gets. That is why we proposed to reduce the tax burden on very low wages so that their net increase would occur without too much burden on entrepreneurs. The key point is to share this cost and make it partially offset by employers and partly by the state budget. I can say that I have an announcement that the government is ready to implement this idea, says Radjikovsky.

Monica Kresniak-Sajevich

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