21 April 2004
MADRID – The new Spanish government is to reduce national insurance payments for workers on permanent contracts, the Minister of Employment said Wednesday.
But companies whose workers have temporary contracts will be penalised more, said Jesús Caldera.
The move is designed to reduce the number of people on short-term or temporary contracts by offering tax benefits for the employers whose workers have fixed contracts.
Spain has the highest number of workers on short-term contracts in Europe.
Caldera said he regretted the “precarious” labour market in Spain and said the Socialist administration wanted to finish the “excessive” use of temporary contracts.
Caldera said the government is to try to stop the linking together of temporary job contracts – a common practice in Spain.
Instead, they want to stimulate fixed contracts.
The change to national insurance payments are intended to stimulate this change.
Caldera said talks between unions and bosses had led to change in the labour conditions in recent years and this meant there was a need for “more flexible and improved” relations in this field.
“We are not going to have impositions from the government or changes by decree,” he said.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news