27 feb 2019
Labour issues

CEOE and Cepyme’s executive boards express their concern in light of the announcement by the labour minister about modifications in key aspects of the current labour regulation

CEOE and CEPYME’s Executive Boards, at the meetings held today, expressed their concern in light of the announcement by the Labour Minister about her intention of changing several aspects of the 2012 Labour Reform before the Spanish General Elections scheduled for April 28.

Trabajadores de la construcción
Trabajadores de la construcción — ©Dreamstime

According to the Spanish entrepreneurs, it makes no sense for the Government to pursue the approval of a Royal Decree-Law on labour matters with a clear electoral purpose ahead of the elections. CEOE and CEPYME believe that such significant regulatory changes must be approved through a Bill and not through a Royal Decree-Law. This last option leaves out the possibility of dialogue and consensus that any democratic process should strive for.

The Spanish Constitution limits the use of the Royal Decree-Law to cases in which there is "an extraordinary and urgent need". The Magna Carta guarantees, thus, the maximum restriction of use of this type of legislation, which, ultimately, denies the Parliament and the Senate the power to dictate Laws with sufficient deliberation among all the Parliamentary Groups.

The Government needs to take into account, in addition, that Article 86 of the Constitution excludes several fields from being regulated through Royal Decree-Law, in particular “the rights, duties and freedoms of the citizens contained in Part 1”.

The Government, as well as the other political parties, must be aware that an abusive use of a Royal Decree-Law constitutes an exception to the normal procedures to enact legislation. The entrepreneurs believe that resorting to this type of legislative provisions when Parliament has already been dissolved relegates the legislative power to a passive role and impoverishes the democratic quality of the country.

Likewise, entrepreneurs express their concern about the possibility of social dialogue being broken unilaterally. CEOE and CEPYME warn that it does not make sense to skirt the tripartite dialogue shortly after calling elections as a result of the Government’s inability to have a broad majority in Parliament that would allow the implementation of its reform plan.