Friday, 2 February 2024, 19:11
The Junta de Andalucía is preparing an employment plan aimed at people who have lost work due to the ongoing drought crisis in the region.
Regional minister of employment Rocío Blanco announced a budget of 110 million euros for the plan and would target municipalities with fewer than 50,000 inhabitants. The plan, called Andalucía Activa, will compensate workers whose livelihoods have been affected by the drought and encourage the hiring of people under the age of 35.
This plan "aims to promote employment that is no longer being created in certain sectors, such as agriculture, so that they can at least have a substitute job for the work they have not been able to obtain as a result of the drought," the minister pointed out.
Of the 110 million euros to be allocated, 80 million will be reserved for municipalities with fewer than 50,000 inhabitants. The remaining 35 million euros will be available for larger towns, but in this case they will only be able to hire people from certain groups, such as the over 45s, long-term unemployed or people with disabilities. "There will be a minimum of ten or eleven contracts reserved for each small town and those left over from the larger municipalities will be distributed among the others so that there is no surplus," Blanco said. Hiring is expected to begin in June, she added. There will be a period of 12 months to carry out the contracts, with each beneficiary hired for six months.
The salary per contract will be "very close to the minimum interprofessional wage, so that the council will have to co-finance it as little as possible", Blanco added. In other employment plans that have had lower incentives, many councils have not hired people because they could not afford the co-financing.
A quarter of the production sector affected
Blanco pointed out that the drought is "not only affecting the agricultural sector" but also "affecting a quarter of the production sector". A total of 10% of the gross value added and employment in Andalucía comes from the primary sector and a third of Andalucía's exports come from the agri-food sector, she said. "We have calculated that production in the agricultural sector, as a result of the drought, will fall by 13%," Blanco added.
Andalucía's GDP has already gone down two points in 2023 due to the drought, and, in the agricultural sector alone, 40,000 jobs have already been lost.
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