Business sector unwilling to raise minimum wages

Sector empresarial indisponível para aumentar salários mínimos

CTA - Confederation of Business Associations of Mozambique, the country's main employers' organization, announced Wednesday it was unwilling to raise minimum wages, comparing the state of companies to entities "in a coma" due to covid-19.

"Negotiating under these circumstances is clearly like going to negotiate with someone who is in a coma," said Vasco Manhiça, vice-president of the CTA.

"No company is breathing healthy, and if we don't have the capacity right now, it's unthinkable to enter into a negotiation process," he added.

According to him, "in the case of the minimum wage adjustments," the reasons that dictated the suspension of the negotiation process last year prevail.

According to the CTA's assessment, by 2020, the business sector "experienced turnover losses estimated at about $1.1 billion, corresponding to 7% of GDP [Gross Domestic Product], culminating in the suspension of about 90,000 jobs."

Although there was a timid recovery at the end of 2020, "in the first quarter of this year the picture became even more complicated, due to the emergence of the second wave of covid-19," said Vasco Manhiça.

"Domestic companies continue to resent the adverse context that characterizes our economy, and after an absolutely black first quarter, they are currently trying to create bases for their revitalization," in the face of an easing of covid-19 prevention restrictions, he stressed.

But, "it will not be a sudden process," he warned.

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