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Germany – SPD stands firm on coalition talks despite industry backlash

13 November 2013

Amidst the ongoing coalition talks between the CDU and the SPD political parties, Chairman of the SPD, Sigmar Gabriel continues to hold his ground, adamant that a coalition will not be formed unless a minimum wage agreement is reached.

“There will be no grand coalition with the SPD without the agreement of a nationwide legal minimum wage, and without an improvement in the general applicability of collective agreements,” Mr Gabriel announced on Tuesday to the Trade Union Congress of the Food and Catering Union (NGG).

In response to some of the comments made by Mr Gabriel, the CEO of the Temporary Workers Association (iGZ) Werner Stolz added: “It is a mystery to me how Mr Gabriel comes to claim that temporary work is poorly paid and has destroyed jobs.”

“It is actually the complete opposite: equal pay for collective agreements reached by the Confederation of German Trade Unions (DGB) from January 2014 of €8.50, additional industry surcharges in industries with higher comparative wages, and parity with other workers as well.”

“Temporary work creates jobs and also guarantees the customers’ business operations. 82% of the approximately 800,000 people employed in the staffing industry have a non-fixed term contract, and approximately 90% work full time,” he added.  

“About one third are, according to the current iGZ barometer, kept on as permanent members of staff by the client companies. Temporary work brings people into employment. Those wanting to regulate temporary work are further demonising and destroying job opportunities, especially for low-skilled people,” Mr Stolz concluded.  

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