“Our study proves that one of the main factors affecting progress of Spanish productivity is the high rate of temporary workers between industries with high technological intensity. These sectors are also those that provide the highest aggregate productivity growth (of all sectors) to our economy, “says Welcome Ortega, author of the study and researcher at the UMA.
The labor law reform of 1984 introduced in our country the possibility of new temporary contracts. And after the subsequent reforms of 1994, 1997 and 2001, the use of temporary contracts has decreased only marginally since 1995 in some sectors.
“We agree that this kind might have multiple beneficial effects such as providing companies the flexibility to adjust the templates to fluctuations in demand, companies provide workers to replace sick leave or maternity, or favoring entrepreneurs open new businesses by reducing fixed costs, “says the researcher.
However, according to the study, the increase of temporary contracts has penalized the productivity growth in Spain and has generated greater instability in employment.
The proportion of temporary, temporary result derived from wage employment and total – in 2004 reached 34.6% in Spain, even to 47.2% in regions such as Andalusia. For that year, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) as a whole this ratio stood at 13%.
“Spain is three times the rate of temporary employment of countries, from a cultural and labor market regulations are coming as France and Italy,” said Ortega.
The use of temporary contracts is distorted
“It is clear that employers use temporary contracts as a mechanism of adjustment of employment and, therefore, dominate this type of temporary contracts on the selection. Also, the temporary increase reduces the possibilities of investing in human capital or to receive specific training in the company, “says Ortega.
The evidence from this research indicate that in the case of construction and services, increasing the proportion of temporary workers has not had a significant effect on productivity growth. However, the energy sector and advanced manufacturing is a “clear” decline in growth rate with respect to labor productivity.
“The high seasonality may encourage further sectoral shifts in industries that traditionally prevails this time work, such as low productivity industries (agriculture, construction and catering), and divert investment into them. A further impediment to the development of high added value sectors, “they say.
“We need an urgent reform of the labor market and sectoral policies that are effective for increasing permanent recruitment, at least in the companies belonging to these branches of production,” says the expert