Maltese MEP Alfred Sant said that the eurozone should agree to a general increase of 5% in the minimum wage across the whole of Europe. The Maltese MEP made this proposal during an economic dialogue and exchange of views with Nadia Calviño, Minister for the Economy and Enterprise of Spain at the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) at the European Parliament.
The Maltese MEP said growth prospects for the eurozone as a whole have dimmed. Further, concern is rising not least because of the uncertainties being caused by Brexit. Meanwhile, investment levels are still lagging not least by way of public investment. While jobs have been created, work conditions for many are less than satisfactory. There is a general feeling that living standards have not improved especially for the lower income households.
“Don’t you think that the time has come to think outside the box when considering how eurozone rules are playing out? We have economic and financial stability maybe, but is this leading to social and perhaps political instability?”
The Maltese MEP said some say that the ideals of a social Europe have been lost in translation.
“Are eurozone rules serving as a brake on public investment especially when governments need, as they do now, to provide some answers to people’s expectations for better social conditions? Instead of seeing governments grant social welfare concessions because people are rioting in the streets or because tough elections beckon, could the eurozone coordinate a social response, such as by agreeing to a general increase of say 5% in the minimum wage across the whole of Europe?” remarked the Maltese MEP.
The Spanish Minister, in her reply, said that there should be a balance between fiscal responsibility and the general welfare.

“This is not a project for bureaucrats but for the people. It’s vital to manage fiscal responsibility with general welfare. What effects one country affects all of Europe, for this reason we have to ensure there is also responsibility and trust between institutions so we can build a deeper Economic Monetary Union (EMU).”

Minister Calviño said it is important that European and national institutions work for the citizens and that the citizens are aware of this.
You may view Alfred Sant’s and Spanish Minister Nadia Calviño’s interventions in this link:

Maltese Version – ALFRED SANT JGĦID LI Ż-ŻONA EWRO GĦANDHA TAPPROVA ŻIEDA TA’ 5% FIL-PAGA MINIMA MADWAR L-EWROPA

Il-Kap tad-delegazzjoni Maltija Laburista tal-Parlament Ewropew Alfred Sant qal li ż-żona ewro għandha taqbel ma’ żieda ġenerali ta’ 5% fil-paga minima fl-Ewropa kollha. L-MEP għamel din il-proposta waqt skambju ta’ ideat ma’ Nadia Calviño, Ministru tal-Ekonomija u l-Intrapriżi ta’ Spanja fil-Kumitat Ekonomiku u Monetarju (ECON) fil-Parlament Ewropew fi Brussell.
Alfred Sant qal li l-prospetti ta’ tkabbir fiż-żona ewro qed jitilfu mis-saħħa tagħhom. Aktar minn hekk, qed jikber tħassib minħabba l-inċertezzi li qed joħloq il-Brexit. Fl-istess ħin il-livelli ta’ investiment għadhom lura, inkluż l-investiment pubbliku. Għalkemm inħolqu l-impjiegi, il-kondizzjonijiet tax-xogħol għal ħafna nies mhumiex sodisfaċenti. Is-sentiment ġenerali huwa li l-livelli ta’ għixien ma sarux aħjar speċjalment għal dawk li jaqalgħu l-inqas.
“Ma taħsibx li wasal iż-żmien li naħsbu ’l barra mill-kaxxa meta naraw kif ir-regoli taż-żona ewro qed jinħassu? Għandna stabilita` ekonomika u finanzjarja forsi, imma din qed twassal għal instabilita` soċjali u forsi anki instabilita` politika?” staqsa Sant lil Calviño.
Alfred Sant qal li xi wħud jgħidu li l-ideali ta’ Ewropa soċjali intilfu fuq il-karta.

“Ir-regoli taż-żona ewro qed iservu ta’ brejkijiet għall-investiment pubbliku speċjalment meta l-gvernijiet ikollhom bżonn, kif għandhom bżonn issa, jirreaġixxu għall-aspettazzjonijiet tan-nies għal kundizzjonijiet soċjali aħjar. Minflok qed naraw lil gvernijiet jagħtu benefiċċji soċjali aħjar minħabba irvellijiet fit-toroq jew minħabba l-elezzjonijiet Ewropej imminenti, iż-żona ewro tista’ tikkoordina risposta soċjali, bħal dik li taqbel dwar żieda ġenerali ta’ 5% tal-paga minima fl-Ewropa kollha?” saħaq l-MEP.
Il-Ministru Spanjol, fit-tweġiba tagħha, qalet li għandu jkun hemm bilanċ bejn ir-responsabbilita` fiskali u l-benesseri soċjali ġenerali.
“Dan mhux proġett għal burokratiċi imma hu proġett għan-nies. Huwa importanti li mmexxu b’responsabilita` fiskali flimkien mal-benesseri ġenerali. Dak li jaffettwa pajjiż wieħed, jaffettwa wkoll lil Ewropa kollha, għalhekk irridu niżguraw li jkun hemm responsabilita` u fiduċja bejn l-istituzzjonijiet biex inkunu nistgħu nibnu Għaqda Ekonomika u Monatarja aktar fil-fond.”

Il-Ministru Calviño qalet li huwa importanti li l-istituzzjonijiet Ewropej u nazzjonali jaħdmu għaċ-ċittadini u li ċ-ċittadini jkunu konxji ta’ dan.

Tista’ ssegwi l-interventi ta’ Alfred Sant u ta’ Nadia Calviño f’din il-link: