It has only just begun, but autumn 2021 is going to be intense, at least in terms of Social Dialogue. The agreement to raise the minimum interprofessional wage (SMI) – only with unions – is the tip of the iceberg of what remains to be negotiated and closed before the end of the year due to the commitments made with the European Commission through the Recovery Plan, Transformation and Resilience. One of these issues is labor reform and the CEOE It has already made it clear that it will not participate in any agreement on this matter.

As EL ESPAÑOL-Invertia has learned from Social Dialogue sources, the employer’s association, although it will continue to participate in meetings with the Ministry of Labor and the unions, has decided not to follow the ‘game’ of Yolanda Díaz’s department.

The vice president’s team had asked the social agents to forward their proposals for the labor reform in which they are working. But the CEOE will not even take this step. The reason? Employers do not want a comma to be changed from the current legislation.

They consider that, at least until the pandemic and crisis completely pass, the current legislative schemes should be maintained. And even so, in a post-crisis scenario, they will be very reluctant to negotiate.

Hence, actually, the employer ‘gets up’ from the negotiation, although it does not stage it in a physical way. The causes are in certain changes proposed by Labor, such as those that they want to establish in collective bargaining.

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Counter Reformation

Government wants to ‘counter-reform’ the 2012 reform of the PP and recover the ultra-activity of the agreements and that the sector agreement takes precedence over the company one.

Another measure that companies do not like are limits to be established for subcontracting. The Government is proposing to eliminate the work contract to employers to prevent them from outsourcing services, something that the employer’s association is directly opposed to.

It will be the second of the great negotiations that Díaz has not managed to carry out since he is responsible for Labor policies after excluding the employers from the rise in the SMI of 2021. Although this does not detract from the achievements of the Galician vice president in negotiations with employers and unions, since it has reached agreements on issues such as successive extensions of the ERTE and the ‘Rider Law’.

In fact, from the guts of the Social Dialogue they add that the employer is expected to remain in the rest of the pending negotiations. Between them, future increases in the SMI for 2022 and 2023.

Upcoming SMI

In fact, the employer is open to negotiate such salary increases, especially in the face of an economic context in which there will not be as much uncertainty as today due to the pandemic and it will be possible to have clear perspectives.

On the side of the unions, the deal seems done. The workers agree with the bulk of the measures proposed by Díaz’s team. All in all, they still have to hand over their joint proposal of initiatives for labor reform, since the UGT and the Workers’ Commissions have agreed to do it this way.

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However, the unions do not seem to be going to provide these facilities to Diaz’s counterpart in Social Security, José Luis Escrivá. Both Pepe Álvarez and Unai Sordo have warned that will oppose any cut in benefits through the intergenerational solidarity pension mechanism in which the Ministry of Inclusion is working.

On his side, the question of pensions has remained in stand by. The Escrivá ministry has preferred not to touch on this issue again until, at least, the extension of the ERTE Covid until the end of January is resolved, which not closed yet.

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