The second vice president and Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, and the general secretaries of CCOO and UGT, Unai Sordo and Pepe Álvarez, respectively, signed the agreement this Wednesday to raise the minimum interprofessional wage (SMI) by 5%, to 1,134 euros per month for fourteen payments, with retroactive effects from January 1, 2024.

After signing the agreement, Minister Díaz thanked the unions for their commitment to general interests “above particular logic” and highlighted that with this increase in the SMI, the rights of workers with the lowest salaries are expanded.

“No one who works full-time in Spain can earn less than 1,134 euros per month in 14 payments, which is equivalent to an average annual salary of 15,876 euros,” said the vice president, who highlighted that this increase in the SMI will benefit one of every seven employees.

In fact, the 2024 increase, which has not been supported by CEOE and Cepyme, will benefit more than 2.5 million people, of which a third are women and young people.

In this sense, the general secretaries of UGT and CCOO, Pepe Álvarez and Unai Sordo, highlighted at the signing of the agreement that the increase in the SMI has “the face of a woman and a young person”, since the typical profile of the recipient of this minimum income “is a woman, young, with a temporary contract and who works in sectors such as commerce, hospitality or the agri-food sectors.”

The union leaders have also highlighted that the SMI “is one of the fundamental elements of social justice and wealth distribution” and its effects are “extraordinarily positive” on the Spanish economy, since its rise contributes to the maintenance and improvement of consumption, to reduce inequalities and boost productivity.

“The rise in wages can boost the improvement of the productivity of the economy because if wages are raised and especially lower wages, the best business projects are favored and the worst business projects are discouraged. Some will call this ideology, but It is a reality that can be demonstrated empirically right now with data in Spain,” Sordo emphasized.

Álvarez, for his part, has warned that the “inordinate ambition” of businessmen for profits forces them to continue working “more and more thoroughly” with the SMI, so he has requested that, by law, it be regulated “up to What point is it necessary that, automatically, the lowest contract salaries affected by the SMI can add this increase to the salary scales themselves”, avoiding disputes that could end up in court.

“It is very important that the SMI is a permanent support for the action of collective bargaining,” added the CCOO leader, who insisted, like Álvarez, on the need for the SMI “not to be decoupled” from 60 % of the average salary recommended by the European Social Charter.

Both Álvarez and CCOO, Unai Sordo, have regretted that CEOE and Cepyme have not joined the agreement “despite all the facilities” that have been given to them and they trust that their absence in this pact will not affect the development of other negotiation tables. social dialogue.

After the formal signing of the agreement, the Government is expected to take the decree to increase the SMI to the Council of Ministers next week for approval.

The business organizations CEOE and Cepyme have not joined the agreement to increase this minimum income, alleging that their demands to index the SMI to public contracts and to establish bonuses for the rural sector have not been met.

Following the increase in the SMI, the Ministry of Finance has announced that, as it did last year, it will increase the exempt minimum in the Personal Income Tax (IRPF) in 2024 to avoid an excessive impact on withholdings.