“It is going to even be squalor”: for the boss of bosses, there’s a extra severe risk than power costs
The managing director of the Belgian Enterprise Federation was the visitor of Pascal Vrebos this Sunday on RTL TVI. Pieter Timmermans, popularly offered because the “boss of bosses”, was questioned specifically concerning the indexation of wages and the chance which weighs on corporations given the worldwide state of affairs.
Pascal Vrebos: On Tuesday, it is possible for you to to barter an actual settlement? (Editor’s observe: a gathering is scheduled for Tuesday on the Prime Minister’s Workplace with the federal government, companies and unions).
Pieter Timmermans: Tuesday is a gathering. I hope we are able to begin the dialogue once more, however then on every thing. We have now to speak about all of the information which are on the desk. Have we already talked concerning the sophisticated state of affairs through which the financial system finds itself? As a result of that’s the actual risk to our buying energy. Everybody is considering their payments immediately. Nicely Named. The federal government has taken motion, and rightly so. I’m nonetheless awaiting extra measures on the regional degree, and rightly so. However on the competitiveness of our corporations… And if there’s a union which ought to recall what occurred prior to now, it’s the FGTB in Wallonia. As a result of we danger dropping lots of jobs. When somebody loses his job, he loses his buying energy.
Pascal Vrebos: You’re preventing towards computerized wage indexation. PS, Ecolo, unions say in coronary heart “niet”. With out indexation, wouldn’t it be squalor?
Pieter Timmermans: However, with the indexation, in the long run with an indexation of greater than 10%, it is going to even be distress. Historical past has proven us that. In 82, devaluation. In 93, freezing of salaries. In 2008, monetary disaster. In 2018, index soar.
Pascal Vrebos: Is that what you’re preventing for?
Pieter Timmermans: No, I am simply saying that you need to be ready to keep away from that. I’m towards an index soar, I say it clearly. Towards an index soar. As a result of it is a linear measure that impacts everybody the identical method. However, and I add a however, if we do nothing, will probably be the one resolution in the long run. Those that say immediately that there isn’t any downside, that corporations can tolerate this, let’s wait, wait. That is the factor I hear essentially the most within the rue de la Loi (observe: road the place the Prime Minister’s workplace is positioned): “Let’s wait and it’ll resolve itself”. That is harmful.
Pascal Vrebos: However in January you wished, if I bear in mind accurately, to freeze wages?
Pieter Timmermans: Who mentioned that? No, I merely mentioned: let’s negotiate settlement, which permits corporations to outlive, which permits individuals who have essentially the most issues to outlive. This can be a query that have to be requested. Is the welfare envelope, ought to we give 10 euros to everybody, or ought to we give 50 or 100 euros to those that really want it? That is what we’re proposing. Is that on this disaster immediately, we must always not goal extra. I heard individuals who rightly reacted. These are the individuals who testified on the present that we should assist. (Editor’s observe: shortly earlier than the interview, a woman who was a former yellow vest and a person who mentioned he was pressured to squat in a house for lack of means testified on RTL TVI).
Pascal Vrebos: Some need to change the legislation of 96 to extend wages. Particularly since some say that 18 corporations within the BEL 20 are paying 8 billion in dividends this yr to shareholders. Could not we elevate wages?
Pieter Timmermans: Have you learnt what number of corporations there are in Belgium? 250,000. We’re speaking about 18 right here. Of those 18 corporations, there are two which have introduced to extend their dividends, as a result of it’s based mostly on the figures for 2021. By the way, it pertains to the State, as a result of we pay 30% (dividend tax). I can discover nonetheless different examples. When discussing macroeconomic points. When there’s a risk to our financial system, it is all the time very simple to provide you with one or two examples.
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