Sánchez asks businessmen and unions for a great income pact to face the effects of the war

The president of the Government, Pedro Sanchez, warned on Wednesday that the conflict over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will last a long time. “We are facing a long crisis“, he said in the Congress of Deputies, and for this reason he has asked for great political and social support around a plan of measures with which to face, among other issues, the effects that the conflict is going to have on the Spanish economy “Europe is obliged to pay with this (economic) sacrifice what the Ukrainians are paying with their freedom and their lives,” said the president before detailing his proposal for measures to address the effects that economic sanctions against Russia will have on the Spanish economy.

The president has called the social agents –employers and unions– to agree “a great rent pact”of moderation of benefits and wages, “to avoid falling into an inflationary spiral“What Sánchez intends with this measure is to prevent the rise in inflation, which will be doubled in the coming months due to the increase in energy prices (gas, fuel, oil, and electricity) and raw materials ( due to the interruption of supplies), is transferred structurally to the Spanish economy.

The president has also advanced that he will request in the European Union a gradual return to fiscal rules suspended by the pandemic, to avoid greater urgency to the States in reducing the deficit and public debt in the current context of war tension.

In addition, from the platform of the Congress of Deputies, Sánchez has outlined a package of measures aimed at containing the energy price and to contain the effects of economic sanctions on the most vulnerable groups and on the business sectors affected, such as tourism and agriculture. For all of them it will be made available the new erts (RED mechanism), of temporary suspension of employment, in order to prevent difficulties from translating into greater unemployment.

To “protect industrial consumers and families”, it has announced the extension until June 30 of the discount of electric social voucher of 60%, for vulnerable groups, and 70% for severely vulnerable groups, as well as the tax reductions of the receipt (electricity VAT of 10%, suspension of the 7% tax on the value of production and special tax of electricity 0.5%). Until that date, it will also extend other measures in force, such as the temporary reduction in the extraordinary profit obtained by gas generation plants non-issuers, which ended on March 31, and the measures of flexibility in natural gas contracts for industrial consumers.

As a novelty, Sánchez has announced the 80% reduction in tolls on the bill to the more than 600 electro-intensive consumers in Spain, a measure repeatedly requested by large industry to mitigate the effect of rising energy costs. In the field of energy, the president has also said that he will invite in the next Conference of Presidents, which “will take place in a few days & rdquor;, the Autonomous Communities, Local Entities, associations and social agents to adopt “additional & rdquor; social measures; to confront “the energy shock in families”.

With the focus on the efficiencySánchez has announced the launch of a energy consumption reduction plan in the buildings and infrastructure of the General State Administration, “associated with air conditioning, mobility and lighting & rdquor ;, as well as an item of 100 million euros for the replacement of Street lighting “which will allow consumption reductions of 70% in this area”.

And with a more medium- and long-term vision, he has advanced that the Government will allocate an item of 500 million euros to the acceleration of self-consumptionwill advance in the “removal of barriers to Electric connection”, will convene in the first half of the year a new renewable energy auction additional to those already planned in the calendar (it is understood, therefore, that it will go beyond the one called on April 6) “to accelerate the deployment of these technologies & rdquor; and one new item of 1,000 million euros for PERTE of Renewable Energies, Hydrogen and Storage (ERHA).

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On the other hand, to make up for the absence of Russian tourists, Sánchez has announced that the Government is working on the search for “alternatives”, while in the case of the farming, has ensured that Spain will apply to the European Commission that it use “all the means at its disposal” to “facilitate the supply of cereals and oilseeds in the European and international markets” and, if necessary, they will request the activation of the mechanisms of the Common Market Organization agrarian “to provide the necessary support to farmers and ranchers”.

In the area of ​​what he has called the country’s “strategic autonomy”, Sánchez has listed other measures such as “accelerating and reinforcing the investments in microchips, semiconductorsstorage and batteries, 5g, Artificial Intelligence, cybersecurity, data centers, or the production of basic principles and essential medicines”; the creation of a reserve of goods considered strategic to conserve essential resources, as well as the approval “coming soon & rdquor; of the National Cybersecurity Strategy and the start-up of the Cybersecurity Operations Center.

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