Abate labor informality, the challenge of Marath Bolaños López at the head of the STPS: AMECH – El Sol de México

The new Secretary of Labor and Social Welfare, Marath Baruch Bolaños López, inherits various pending issues that his predecessor left in progress, but the most important issue of all is the fight against informality.

“It is one of the issues that must be added to your agenda, since half of the workers in Mexico are in the informal sector and do not have social benefits, this is 55.2 percent of the employed population of the country,” said Héctor Márquez Pitol. , in interview.

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President of the Mexican Association of Human Capital Companies (AMECH), pointed out that there are currently 21.8 million workers registered with the IMSS. So far in 2023, a growth of 490 thousand workers was reported.

But compared the first quarter of 2022 with the first three months of 2023, an increase of 1.2 million people was reported within the informal sector. Last year, 30.9 million people with informal jobs were registered.

Therefore, there are currently just over 32 million Mexicans who work in the informal sector, of which 54.8 percent are women, he referred to El Sol de México.

Márquez Pitol pointed out that there are a series of projects that Bolaños López will have to give continuity to as head of the STPS, such as Young People Building the Future, but there are many more. There is all the effort of REPSE. “In short, we would like to see that they do not stop.”

But also, in everything that in a year and a half, he will be as secretary in the STPS, work could be done, such as continuing salary increases to end precariousness, where 4 out of 10 people do not have a sufficient salary. This is 8.7 million workers out of a total of 21.7 million registered with Social Security as of March.

Regarding informal employment, he considered that it is the most important issue of all. “We bring a rate in the country of 25 percent, but there are states that reach 80 percent like Oaxaca and there are states higher, like Coahuila, with 35 percent.”

He said that it could be possible in Oaxaca and other entities to reduce informal work. Within the world of work, this is the most important to solve “and it has not entered it,” she said in an interview with El Sol de México.

For his resolution, the president of the AMECH, said that “it will be very important to continue with more communication with the business associations so that joint work can be carried out. The problem of informality is not a simple matter. We need formal jobs for 30 million people,” said Márquez Pitol.

“The only thing that can combat it is that there are formal employment opportunities. And those opportunities have to be with jobs and positions that have a good remuneration, that are decent jobs, with social security.”

What generates formal work is investment. Jobs are generated where there is investment and reinvestment where they already are. And much of that is achieved with dialogue, for sure. “It is what is needed so that businessmen can really take an interest,” he added.

He argued that this is the great challenge and being clear about what to work on and being able to immediately establish the conversation and concrete plans so that the conditions that guarantee formal jobs are given.

Regarding the participation of women in the informal sector, he commented that they are 54.8 percent of the 30 million Mexicans who develop in the informal economy. It is the highest level compared to the 48.7 percent participation of men in this sector.

Regarding whether women are the most hurt in informal jobs, Márquez Pitol commented:

“It is not that there are fewer opportunities in the informal sector, but rather that women need more flexibility for many activities, because many of them, being mothers, have to take care of their children and require jobs with a vision of help.”

That is why, due to these circumstances, women are more affected in the informal sector than men.

Pitifully precarious salary

Regarding the precariousness of wages, what should the new head of the STPS do?

-It is a situation that has been cancer. Therefore, the new Secretary of Labor must continue the salary increases. The percentage, the number of people with minimum wage is small. So, not only there but in general we have to grow.

The big problem in Mexico is low wages, so that they are higher and with benefits, people are invited to move from informality to formality.

This is a serious problem that no one has wanted to solve, which is why we have reached the volumes that we are already at.

Is there talk of 8.7 million working people without sufficient wages?

-And if we also talk about informal workers, there are more than 30 million; but within that informality, workers who are not well paid, do not even have the essential salary, which is difficult to have in statistics; but we are certain that at least a third of these people are not well paid.

These are the cases of many people who work in Services and where they are employed, but they are told: “…You don’t have a salary, just tips…”. Yes, there is a pitiful precariousness that prevents us from progressing.

Is there a recipe to overcome this?

-There is the case of Panama, which 15 years ago had a very serious problem of informality and has already left it behind. It is a country where people have a good income and therefore has a very different level of economy.

The recipe is not that difficult. It is to encourage investment to come to the country, but in a very drastic, very strong way.

In the case of Panama it was not a single thing. The main change was to exempt companies that invested and created jobs for 10 years from taxes. This allowed many investments to arrive, many companies and the country’s economy to rise.

In Panama, the exemption was from Income Tax (ISR) for 10 years, it is something very attractive for companies.

But there are other cases in our Mexico than when the government wants to and says. “I give you this land so that you can settle…”. It has to be something very attractive for the businessman to say: “I’m going there.”

Bringing one, two companies helps; but what we need is to employ 30 million people. So, we need a lot of capital to arrive.

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This is part of the formula that must be worked on to be able to deliberately establish clear objectives to change the reality of informality.

And finally, he said that AMECH, with more than 100 human capital companies, is ready to support them with what they have to do. “We have more than a year to work on these issues in the remainder of this administration. We hope to make progress to create formal and decent jobs”.

2023-06-29 23:03:16
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