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An increase of 5% should be put on EU minimum wage levels – Sant

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An increase of 5% should be put on EU minimum wage levels - Sant“Where the national minimum wage exists in EU countries, in the current favourable economic context, the minimum wage levels should be increased across the board by at least 5%” Maltese MEP Alfred Sant told the European Parliament.

Speaking during the debate on the ‘Minimum income for a fair Europe: a right for citizens,’ Dr Sant added that we need to push for the adoption of an EU wide national minimum wage adapted to the conditions of each Member State.

He said that “private consumption has grown. Exports and investment have increased. Unemployment continues to fall and it has gotten closer to pre-crisis levels. Profits of corporations have increased.”

“Public deficit and debt levels have been largely brought under control. Not so the share of the economic cake being enjoyed by the working and middle classes; there the deficit has continued to grow. In most cases where a national minimum wage exists in Europe, it still falls short of what a living wage should be,” said the MEP.

Alfred Sant concluded by saying that the divergences between the highest income earners and the lowest have continued to increase. “This is not fair. At best, Minimum Income schemes play the role of safety nets for the most vulnerable workers and for individuals unable to guarantee an adequate standard of living through their own efforts. They are hardly doing so. The time has come however for such schemes to go beyond this minimum.”

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