May 20, 2013
Micheli, Moyano prepare joint protests
Anti-government CTA umbrella union grouping leader Pablo Micheli announced yesterday that he and his counterpart from the dissident CGT, Hugo Moyano, are preparing joint protest measures for March against the government’s labour policy.
Micheli announced a march scheduled for March 14, which will culminate at the Labour Ministry, where the umbrella groupings’ various member unions will “demand the unification of family benefits to 300 pesos for the entire country,” while a subsequent general strike was not ruled out within the first half of the year.
Moyano, who did not speak at the post-meeting press conference, did not officially confirm his union grouping’s presence, but he is highly expected to do so imminently.
After the meeting at the CGT’s Azopardo headquarters, Micheli said that Domestic Trade Secretary Guillermo Moreno’s recent deal with supermarkets to freeze prices for two months represents a “manoeuvre to limit wage hikes” with negotiations approaching. The CTA leader added that the march on March 14 will also be to demand that the Labour Minister Carlos Tomada and the government refrain from imposing a “ceiling on wage negotiations.”
“Price controls in Argentina have never been efficient,” Micheli argued, “generally they have failed because days before the control is implemented, prices have soared and the day after things became extremely expensive once again.”
The announcement came after President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner unveiled hikes of 20 percent to the income tax floor and 15.8 percent to pension rates, which are two of the issues that fostered discontent in Micheli and Moyano’s groupings throughout 2012.
The hikes were considered insufficient, with Micheli affirming the income tax floor rise “does not reflect reality after two years of nearly 50 percent inflation.” The union leader stated that joint national strikes with the CGT would occur “if the government continues to make decisions without consulting unions.”
— Herald with DyN