BERLIN, Germany: Germany’s largest industrial union, IG Metall, has said it will seek an 8 percent wage increase, just above the country’s current inflation rate, for millions of manufacturing workers during upcoming pay negotiations.
The union’s demand comes as Chancellor Olaf Scholz, along with unions and employers, aim to address the impact of rising prices and seek to curb inflation.
In Germany, Europe’s largest economy, wage agreement are usually settled in negotiations between employers and unions covering entire industrial sectors. IG Metall mainly negotiates for workers in the auto and machinery industries, numbering more than 3.8 million.
Negotiations are due to begin in mid-September.
“The economy needs rising incomes and stable consumption as an existential support,” said IG Metall chairman Joerg Hofmann, who argued that most companies are doing well, in terms of both orders and earnings, so they can “pass on rising costs, but employees cannot,” as quoted by the Associated Press.
In June, Germany’s annual inflation rate stood at 7.6 percent, slightly less than the half-century high of 7.9 percent in May.
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