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Uruguay : Murro: Salary Councils allowed an increase in the purchasing power of salaries of 55.5%.

"Since 2005, salaries have grown 55.5% above the price increase," said Ernesto Murro, which was achieved thanks to the reinstatement of the Salary Councils. He added that since that date they created 300,000 jobs and recognized that 50,000 have been lost, but not at the levels of the 1990s. He affirmed that Uruguay's path "is one of economic growth with social justice and decent work."

"There have never been so many people working and there have never been so few unemployed, there are many of them and it hurts us, but they are less than in the past," said Murro in a simultaneous broadcast of radio and television on the occasion of Workers' Day. "The rates of employment and unemployment by government period prove it," he said. He said: "We initially created 300,000 jobs, more than double what the entire population of Uruguay grew, but in recent years some 50,000 jobs have been lost and we are working to reverse this situation."

He recalled that the neighborhood generates an adverse situation, but, in front of it, "Uruguay did not reduce labor or social rights." From his point of view "the countries that are doing it have more unemployment, more poverty, more inflation and less or no economic growth". "That road is not ours," he said.

He stressed that "it is that of economic growth, with social justice and decent work." "The numbers sing," he said, and reviewed BPS industry and trade data: 54,000 more companies and 380,000 more workers.

"In Uruguay we have markedly reduced poverty, we are the country with the lowest percentage of poor people in Latin America, equality has been increased, and it is mainly thanks to the growth of work, salaries and pasivities," he said.

He said that this is possible thanks to the reinstallation of the Salary Councils, after its elimination in 1990. "In the three governments of the Frente Amplio, there were always Councils with the greatest number of negotiation areas, which allowed a significant improvement of the wages, with a growth of 55.5% above the increase in prices, "he stressed. He emphasized that "both the minimum wage and the minimum passivities have tripled above the increase in prices."

He explained that "in the seven rounds that have taken place in 14 years, there are between 85 and 94% of agreements between employers and workers, who prefer to negotiate in the Ministry of Labor to do so without participation of the portfolio."

He highlighted the decrease in occupational accidents and pointed out that, in relation to 2014, "there are 11,000 less work accidents". He exemplified that in the construction they decreased 55% and in the rural area, 33% ". He compared that, "between 1985 and 2004, 25 occupational health standards were approved, while in the last 14 years they were more than 50".

He also spoke about the National Integrated Health System, "which included, for the first time in history, retirees, pensioners and people with disabilities."

He argued that it is essential to learn throughout life and, in this regard, reported that the National Institute of Employment and Vocational Training (Inefop) multiplied by seven the training in five years, since they increased from 18,000 to 120,000. "On this May Day, we must value what we have achieved together, with social participation, because there is a risk of regression," he said. "We are in a country that deserves to continue advancing in social justice," he concluded.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:3URUG
Date:May 2, 2019
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