Many expressions can be used to define the kind of job this post will speak about, such as “Marginal employment”, “Minor employment” or the most popular one:“MiniJobs”. There are many different opinions about this minijobs, on the one hand, Rosalía Sanchez, a Spanish journalist specialized in Ecomomics explains in her article how minijobs work in Germany, the country which has the lower unemployment rate of the European Union and where she lives since 2003. She explains how this minijobs have led Germany to the top of the European Union in the worst moment of the economic crisis and how it will be a suitable solution for Spain and for many other European countries with dramatic levels of unemployment among youngsters. And on the other hand, some other experts, such as James Angelos and Nina Adam, who write for some prestigious British economic magazines, claim that this kind of employment is a very dangerous option in the long term.
For everyone to know, the specific characteristics of these minijobs are the following ones: Low remuneration contracts (around 400 euros) that are tax-free for the employees and nearly tax-free for the employers, jobs for no more than 15 hours a week, with only a partial subscription to the Healthcare System (Social Security).
In Germany, where this system of minor jobs was instaured in 2003, there are more or less 7 million people working with these conditions. It is true that is seems to be a good solution for unemployment but many experts, as James Angelos and Nina Adam claim that the country is becoming poorer because of these measures. It is a reality that the number of poor people in Germany has increased (considering poor people with an income inferior to 980 euros/month) while the unemployment rate has decreased. As they explain in their article: “Critics say Germany’s embrace of minijobs helps widen the gap between rich and poor and add to poverty, developments they say undermine the social contract underpinning the nation’s social-market economy.” The German Government is very proud of their employment system but according to Angelos and Adam, German population is not feeling that success: “The German economy grew 13.5% over the same time frame in inflation-adjusted terms, leaving many Germans feeling they missed out on economic gains”
“Minijobs have missed the mark,” said Werner Eichhorst, the deputy director of labor policy at the independent research institute IZA. “They are structured in a way that employers have no incentive to turn those jobs into regular employment and, for tax reasons, employees have no incentive to work more. It’s a dead-end job.”
BCE has recommended Spain to start following the German model in order to solve their important problems concerning unemployment and specially unemployment affecting the younger sector of the society. It is time for Spanish society as well as for the Spanish government to think about this possibility and wonder it will bring benefits to our economy at the same time that reducing the unemployment rate.
-Rosalía Sanchez, ( December2011)” Qué son los minijobs?” http://www.elmundo.es/elmundo/2011/12/15/economia/1323955971.html, El Mundo, Retrieved on December 2013.
– James Angelos and Nina Adam (May 2013), “Minijobs’ Lift Employment but Mask German Weakness”, http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424127887324682204578512782697519080, Retrieved on December 2013.
– Kate Connolly; Louise Osborne (30 August 2013). “Low-paid Germans mind rich-poor gap as elections approach: With no national minimum wage and a fifth of workers in insecure mini-jobs, critics say German prosperity is being built on exploitation of the downtrodden”. The Guardian (Berlin). Retrieved 31 August 2013
-Jorge Barón (May 2013) “minijobs: La receta alemana contra el paro” http://blog.infoempleo.com/blog/2013/05/08/minijobs-la-receta-alemana-contra-el-paro/, retrieved on December 2013.