The minimum wage in 2022 will rise sharply. We know how much is the minimum amount of increase

As of next year, the minimum salary should not be less than 2903.70 PLN or even 2,984.70 PLN. The amount is based on the average salary in the first quarter of 2021.

The increase in the minimum wage next year will be at least 103.70 PLN (3.7%) or 184.70 PLN (6.6%). This value is guaranteed through the mechanism stipulated in the law of October 10, 2002 regarding the minimum wage for work (i.e. the Code of Laws of 2018, Item 2177). We will find out the correct amount on May 12, 2021. On this day, the Central Bureau of Statistics will present the average salary in the first quarter of 2021. If it is less than 5,600 PLN (that is, the current minimum wage – 2.8 thousand – then at least half the average salary will be formed.) Salary), the regulations will guarantee an increase of 103.70 PLN. If the above amount is exceeded, the minimum salary will have to be increased by at least 184.70 PLN. This value will be the starting point for the government and the social partners negotiating the lowest wage in a given year. If they do not agree, the final amount is determined by the government (not less than the statutory amount).

In light of the current difficult economic situation, growth must be maintained only at the level guaranteed by law. The effects of the epidemic have turned out – so far – to be less painful for the labor market than expected, but in the period of economic recovery, caution must be exercised, says ukasz Kozłowski, chief economist of the Polish Entrepreneur Union.

The increase in the minimum wage is important for the entire market. Firms will have to raise the salaries of those with the lowest wages. According to data from the Central Statistical Office of Poland, their number is about 1.5 million people (as at the end of 2019). In addition, all benefits and obligations related to the minimum wage will also increase, including night work allowances, compensation for harassment and discrimination, and social security contributions for those running the business (in a preferential period). At the same time, the lowest hourly wages for the self-employed and contractors will, of course, also rise. In 2022, it must be at least 19.00 PLN (an increase of 0.70 PLN) or 19.50 PLN (an increase of 1.20 PLN).

For some sectors, this will not be a big problem, but some may clearly feel the need to raise interest rates.

– In the period of the epidemic, for example, the industry and construction performed well. But some industries have been severely weakened – points out asukasz Kozłowski.

It is primarily about people who have been or have been in lockdown for the longest and longest period, i.e. gastronomy, hotel industry, trade.

In these sectors a lot of people are getting lower wages. Entrepreneurs are just emerging from the crisis, and they are starting to rebuild their businesses. Therefore, caution and restraint are advisable when determining a minimum wage increase. The growth implied by the regulations is high enough – FPP chief economist adds.

This situation is assessed differently by the other side of the social dialogue, that is, the trade unions.

– We expect an increase that takes into account the current conditions and the government’s statements. On the one hand, taxes are increasing, the cost of living and prices are rising. On the other hand, the productivity increases. We recognize that many companies are just starting to rebuild their activities after the pandemic, but this catch-up must also involve employees, believes Norbert Kosiak, Director of the Economic Policy and Structural Funds Department at OPZZ.

It also appears that it is more and more justified to amend the rules for determining minimum wages. The current mechanism – based on macroeconomic projections – has practically not taken into account last year’s crisis and decline in GDP at all (projections from 2019 assumed an increase, because no one had predicted a global pandemic at the time).

– A new formula is needed. In the event of a sudden economic slowdown, the current mechanism of paradox means that the bottom line of growth is not only slowing down, but also accelerating. The regulations do not take into account the incorrect forecast of the GDP, that is, its decline, but take into account the fact that after this collapse the economy will recover and the growth rate will be high – notes Łukasz Kozłowski.

For years, there have been proposals – mainly from trade unions – that the current mechanism should be replaced by a simple compass (for example, the minimum wage should be 50% of the average wage or 60% of the average wage).

The European Union is currently working on a draft directive on this issue. Norbert Kosiak says that Brussels’ activities are advanced and we must instead not present our own solutions for the time being, so as not to disrupt the legislative work.

For the time being, employers and trade unions are left to wait for the government’s proposal to lift the increase and start negotiations on the subject in the Social Dialogue Council. If they do not agree with the government, the latter will independently indicate the final amount by September 15, 2021.

Łukasz Guza

Zenik Gazeta Browna

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