The National Trade Union of the Agricultural Industry Workers (Sintrainagro) presented before the Colombian Banana Association (Augura) a list of requests from producers to entrepreneurs in the Uraba region for the signing of a new collective labor agreement.
The starting point for negotiations will be a 12% salary increase for the first year of the agreement and 5% for the second.
The minimum wage in Colombia this year is 27,603 pesos per day (i.e. 828,116 pesos per month) but in the banana sector it is about 40,000 pesos a day ( 1.2 million pesos a month), so the 12% readjustment would increase it to 44,800 pesos per day (1.34 million per month). The aspiration of the banana workers is to transfer these percentage increases to education and housing funds, as well as extralegal benefits.
The business perspective
In the meeting in which Sintrainagro presented the proposal, the president in charge of Augura said that 2019 had not been an easy year for Colombia's banana production, as productivity has been affected by climate change, especially in Uraba, during the months of April, May, and June.
The organization of employers has considered the salary increase to be exaggerated and has proposed a one-year extension of the current agreement. In turn, Augura and Sintrainagro agreed that the dialogues, which will last 20 days in the direct settlement stage, will tend to protect the 35,000 direct jobs generated and the income of almost 850 million dollars in foreign currency for the country.