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German employers urge longer hours as workers celebrate Workers’ Day

In World
May 01, 2024

As workers across Germany celebrate International Workers’ Day, the head of the country’s employers’ associations said people should put in more hours on the job.

“We need more work in Germany, not less,” Rainer Dulger said in a statement on the group’s website on Wednesday.

“Germany discusses too much about the conditions of non-work and too little about the value of work,” lamented the president of the Confederation of German Employers’ Associations (BDA).

The question of how to make Germany an attractive place to work again must take centre stage, he said. “This also means that we will all have to work more and longer,” Dulger stressed.

To achieve this, the framework conditions for work must be improved, he said.

“Work is much more than a necessity, and this must be brought back into focus on May 1,” emphasized the BDA boss, adding: “There is no such thing as effortless prosperity. And added value is created by private entrepreneurs.”

Dulger also emphasized the value of social partnership. “In times of low growth, an ageing society and a high shortage of labour and skilled workers, we must work together to secure good jobs and prosperity in Germany for the future,” said Dulger.

He called on trade unions and politicians to “finally help shape work constructively again. That will help everyone: When the economy is booming, wages will also rise faster.”

People take part in a demonstration organized by the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) on May Day at Karl-Marx-Allee. Christoph Soeder/dpa

People take part in a demonstration organized by the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) on May Day at Karl-Marx-Allee. Christoph Soeder/dpa

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