Martín Artiles, Antonio
Impact of immigration on employment and pay examined
02 Februar 2004
Spain has been witnessing increased immigration in recent years, and the trend is set to continue in future. Two studies published in 2003 shed some light on the employment situation of immigrant workers and their impact on pay and conditions. Notably, immigrant workers are employed in a relatively narrow range of sectors, and real pay levels have been falling in these industries since the mid-1990s. Trade unions attribute this to the increased employment of immigrants on poor employment conditions and are calling for regulatory action and the application of the conditions laid down in the collective agreements.
Controversial rulings issued in industrial accident cases
26 Januar 2004
In November 2003, Spanish courts issued three rulings that proved controversial because they were seen as finding workers responsible for the industrial accidents they had suffered. Trade unions criticised the judgments on the grounds that they failed to take into account the working conditions and the unstable nature of temporary employment contracts, and interpreted the Occupational Risk Prevention Law incorrectly.
Equal opportunities bargaining slow to develop
02 Dezember 2003
Despite major advances in legislation on equal opportunities for women and men and reconciling work and family life - often due to EU Directives - collective bargaining on these issues has been slow to develop in Spain. This article examines the situation in late 2003.
Renewal of pensions agreement
11 November 2003
In September 2003, the commission which oversees the 1995 'Toledo pact' on the Spanish social security and pensions system agreed a set of recommendations of the renewal of this accord. As well as continuing with many current initiatives, the commission makes a number of new recommendations aimed at dealing with Spain's ageing population and low birth rate.
Working time falling and becoming more flexible
28 Oktober 2003
Collectively agreed working time has been undergoing significant changes in Spain in recent years. The annual duration of working time has been falling at a moderate rate, while there has been increasing flexibility in the organisation of working time, through methods such as annualisation and the irregular distribution of hours over the year. Drawing on recent data, this article outlines the situation in 2003.
UGT calls for more government investment in active employment policies and social protection
28 Oktober 2003
In response to Spain's 2004 state budget, presented in September 2003, the UGT trade union confederation has called on the government to promote active employment and social protection policies aimed at improving the stability of employment and the employability and protection of unemployed people. UGT is also demanding greater investment in research and development, infrastructures and technologies, improvements in education and health policy and a new family protection policy that is not based on tax deductions.
More Saturday working agreed at SEAT
21 Oktober 2003
In September 2003, a working time flexibility agreement was reached by management and workers' representatives at SEAT, the Spanish motor manufacturer. The agreement provides for 10 additional Saturdays to be worked, in order to deal with increased demand.
UGT criticises family benefits system
29 September 2003
In August 2003, the UGT trade union confederation published a document criticising the Spanish system of family benefits, an issue to which unions have hitherto paid little attention. UGT states that Spain spends less on family benefits than any other EU country and criticises the fact that benefit is mainly paid through tax deductions, thus disadvantaging lower-earning families. UGT is calling for a fairer system, not based on taxation.
Pensions reform under discussion
25 Juni 2003
In summer 2003, work is due to start on a revision of the Toledo pact, the 1995 agreement on the Spanish pensions system, in the light of gloomy demographic and expenditure forecasts. The government is seeking various changes, notably linking pensions to contributions paid over the entire career, the development of private pension schemes, a halt to early retirement and an increase in the retirement age. A recent European Commission report has contributed to the debate.
Long-term working time flexibility agreed at SEAT
10 Juni 2003
An innovative agreement was signed in May 2003 at the SEAT motor manufacturing plant in Martorell, Spain, providing for long-term flexibility of working time to deal with reduced production between June 2003 and March 2004, thus preventing redundancies. Reduced working time over this period will be recovered in 2004 when production increases.