German parliament approves minimum wage of €12 per hour

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The statutory minimum wage in Germany will rise to 12 euros per hour (12.89 dollars) in October, after a vote on Friday in the Bundestag parliament.

The minimum wage was passed with the votes of the centre-left coalition, the Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens and the Free Democrats as well as the hard-left Die Linke party.

The conservative opposition and the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) abstained.

Currently, the minimum wage is 9.82 euros; by July 1, it will rise to 10.45 dollars.

At the same time, the maximum remuneration for so-called mini-jobs will rise from 450 euros to 520 euros per month in October.

Labour Minister, Hubertus Heil, said women and people in eastern Germany would particularly benefit from the increase in the minimum wage.

Meanwhile, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, from the SPD, had made the wage increase a key promise of his election campaign in 2021.

Many of the speakers during the debate used the current high inflation as part of the reason why a minimum wage was vital.

However, opposition parties argued that the minimum wage would not protect people against further prices increases and that there were other ways; to increase purchasing power and keep Germany’s economy competitive.

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