A new pay agreement is due to come into effect from April 2023. | Fela Saborit

1

The main unions, the CCOO and the UGT, believe that profits generated this summer justify a pay increase for the Balearic hospitality sector in line with the rise in the consumer price index - around ten per cent, therefore.

A national agreement on pay, with the employers represented by the CEOE confederation of business organisations, is unlikely to influence union demands in the Balearics, where negotiations for the hospitality sector (hotels, bars, restaurants) have typically resulted in different outcomes compared with the rest of the country. A prime example was in 2017, when a 17% pay increase over four years (extended by one year because of the pandemic) confirmed the Balearic hospitality sector as the best paid in Spain.

José Luis García of the CCOO says that reaching an agreement at state level and having this as reference would help, "but in any case, we must take into account our own situation".

He adds that "economic improvement is greater in the Balearics than in the whole of the country". Negotiations should therefore be "more ambitious", especially as the Balearic government has spoken out in favour of union demands, arguing that the economic situation allows pay increases.

Lorenzo Navarro, general secretary of the UGT, expresses his gratitude for the government having said that "we are right". "Businesses have made a lot of money, more than they expected, and they have transferred rising costs to prices of their products."

The unions are anticipating full-on clashes with the employers, who have consistently been saying that the rise in costs is eroding profit, despite an increase in turnover. The employers also argue that they are still counting the cost of two years of Covid and that now is not the time for hefty pay increases. They say that it would be preferable to wait for a definitive recovery and, in any event, not to link pay rises to the consumer price index.