Better salaries under collective bargaining agreements started to come into effect in 2018. | Laura L. Marin - Archive

The salaries of workers in the Balearics covered by collective bargaining agreements over the past three years have risen by up to eight per cent.

Figures from the Balearic government's employment observatory indicate that this average rise was 2.5% higher than in the country as a whole. In 2017, there was a 1.3% increase, and this was followed by 3.5% and 3.2% in 2018 and 2019.

Prior to 2017, increases had been negligible: no more than one per cent. This virtual freezing of salaries coincided with labour reform undertaken by the Spanish government of Mariano Rajoy in 2012. Unions are demanding that this reform is repealed.

In the Balearics, the situation with collective bargaining agreements began to change in 2016. The most notable were those for the hospitality and retail sectors, which applied to some 200,000 employees in total. The agreement for the hospitality sector, which came into effect in 2018, was 17% over four years. It was an agreement that took unions and the government by surprise, as the 17% was tabled by the Majorca Hoteliers Federation when unions had been looking at 10%.