Spain's new government announced on Wednesday that the minimum wage in the country will be increased by 5.5 percent in an attempt to battle inequality.
It will be the third economic initiative that the new socialist government has implemented since taking office earlier this month.
If approved by the cabinet in the coming days the rise will take immediate effect and be retroactive from 1 January.
The uplift will affect around 2 Million employees and mean that full time workers can expect to earn a minimum of 1,108 Euros gross each month.
The move comes after new Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced back in late 2018 that he planned on increasing the minimum wage by around 22 percent making it one of the highest in Europe.
Business owners were disappointed with the announcement, however worker's unions welcomed the move.
After a press conference, Labour Minister Yolanda Díaz said, “I want to announce that we are a strong government, that we are heeding the mandate of a social majority that wants us to move forward.
"We have reached an agreement to lift the minimum wage this year," said Díaz, hailing it a "very happy day for democracy in this country and for all workers."
The government also plans to roll back parts of a 2012 labour reform, which made it easier for companies to fire workers and drive down wages.
Díaz said that the roll back of the reforms would be done in two phases, however they would be done “very quickly”.
Sanchez' new government with the support of leftist party Podemos, have also announced a 0.9 percent increase in pensions and a 2.0 percent increase in salaries of the country’s civil servants.
January 14, 2021