As of: January 9th, 2022 3:41 p.m.
The traffic light coalition wants to increase the minimum wage by law to twelve euros. The employers are fighting back – but Minister Heil makes it clear that the project will be implemented this year.
Federal Labor Minister Hubertus Heil wants to implement the promised increase in the minimum wage to twelve euros this year. “As a candidate for Chancellor, Olaf Scholz said that we would increase the minimum wage to twelve euros within a year. And we will increase it in 2022 because it is necessary,” said the SPD politician to the German press agency.
Heil announced that he would present a draft law “in the next few weeks”. “The increase to twelve euros will and must come. It is a question of fair performance and respect for decent work.”
The minimum wage in Germany is currently 9.82 euros gross per hour; it had risen by 22 cents per hour on January 1st. The traffic light coalition partners of the SPD, Greens and FDP have written the increase to twelve euros in the coalition agreement. Normally, the increases follow the requirements of the so-called minimum wage commission, which is made up of representatives from employers and trade unions.
Criticism from employers
Above all, employers are clearly criticizing the plan to raise the minimum wage by law. Heil does not want to be swayed by this. “If the employers’ associations do not want the state to intervene, then they can and must do their homework when it comes to collective bargaining. Only 48 percent of employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements,” he said. Many people in the country would work “in the far too large low-wage sector” and could “barely make ends meet despite full-time work,” said Heil.
“Millions of people in Germany would benefit from the increase – including many women and many people in East Germany, where the low-wage sector is particularly large due to a lack of collective bargaining coverage”.
“Question of trust in democratic politics”
It is “also a question of trust in democratic politics” to implement this election promise. “I also expect respect for this democratic decision,” said Heil. The minimum wage commission will retain its “previous function as an independent commission” and will continue to make recommendations to the federal government.