WORLD


Spain seeks volunteers for nationwide test of four-day workweek

Baku, April 6, AZERTAC

Spain is about to ask hundreds of companies to join in one of the biggest-ever tests of whether a four-day workweek can be implemented without harming the economy, according to Bloomberg.

While initiatives elsewhere have largely been small-scale and started by individual businesses, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s administration has agreed to put 50 million euros ($59 million) of public money into a three-year, nationwide program.

It’s the brainchild of a small, left-wing political party called Mas Pais, which persuaded the Socialist-led government to implement a 32-hour workweek and then assess the experiment. Party leader Inigo Errejon expects around 200 employers to sign up voluntarily, with a start date in the fall.

Errejon, 37, was calling for a four-day workweek even before the Covid-19 pandemic, but he says it’s now more plausible in Spain because the crisis has shown that greater flexibility is possible in the workplace.

Under Errejon’s program, employees will get the same salaries despite putting in fewer hours. Unless they significantly boost their productivity, companies will pay their workers more to do less.

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