The European directive on the minimum wage is in the pipeline. A little more than a year and a half after the European Commission’s proposal, already approved by the European Parliament and the Council at first reading, the provision according to the most accredited forecasts should be the subject of an agreement in the night at the end of the last round of negotiations ( the so-called ‘trilogue’) between the Commission, Parliament and the EU Council. A long-awaited provision in Italy – Minister Andrea Orlando called it “an assist for workers” – where the political debate on the issue has reignited in recent days to the point of creating some tension within the majority and the government.

But in Brussels they are certain that the impact of the directive will not be “negative for job creation and employment”, as the EU Commissioner for Labor Nicolas Schmit has already warned, recalling that after the introduction in Germany the on the contrary, employment has increased and that in the EU there will be no maximum and minimum wages. According to what has already been clarified, the directive will instead aim to establish a framework for setting ‘adequate and fair’ minimum wages. Italy is among the six EU countries that do not already have regulations on the matter, with a completely open debate between the social partners and within the government itself. The idea of ​​the three European institutions in the agreement to be approved is to respect the different welfare traditions of the Twenty-seven, while reaching the point of guaranteeing “a decent standard of living”, reducing inequalities and putting a stop to precarious and pirate contracts. . The aim is then to “strengthen the role of the social partners and collective bargaining”.

The coverage of collective bargaining in particular should be set at a threshold between 70% and 80%, according to the two objectives set respectively by the Commission and the European Parliament and within which a compromise should be found. In addition to Italy, the minimum wage has also not been established in Austria, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Sweden. Where it is already foreseen, according to the latest Eurostat data, it travels between € 332 per month in Bulgaria and € 2,257 in Luxembourg. In Germany it is equal to 1,621 euros. The definitions of ‘adequate’ and ‘minimum’ wages are other points on which European negotiators are confronted. Even if the text would now be armored by a general agreement reached between France and Germany and only technical details would remain to be defined. The new European directive could thus be definitively approved by June, starting from that moment the trap of two years for transposition into national laws. The European measure, observed Orlando “will push more towards interventions that safeguard the lowest wage levels and towards an organic discipline”.

CGIL secretary Maurizio Landini urged not to listen to Europe “only when it tells us to cut pensions or cancel article 18 or cut social spending. If finally all of Europe realizes that low wages and precarious workers without rights they question social media, you have to listen to it “. “We have a dramatic problem of poor work”, the denunciation of the secretary of the Democratic Party Enrico Letta: “We are in favor of the minimum wage, in the logic of the EU directive. The minimum wage is used to remove as many types of work as possible from the table. poor”. For the vice president of FI Antonio Tajani, on the other hand, “there is a risk of lowering salaries rather than increasing them”. While for the leader of FdI Giorgia Meloni it is “a weapon of mass distraction”, when the tax wedge should be cut. The leader of the Five Stars Giuseppe Conte called it “unworthy” to try to remove the citizenship income, “indeed we must work to broaden the front – he reiterated – also introducing the minimum wage”.

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