A minimum wage of 12 euros – that’s what Olaf Scholz promised, and that’s how it should be implemented. Another decision should also be made at the same time. There is criticism of the overall package.

The traffic light coalition in the Bundestag wants to decide on the promised increase in the minimum wage to 12 euros on Friday. A draft law by Minister of Labor Hubertus Heil is before the MPs. The increase in the lower wage limit is planned for October 1st.

The draft law is based on around 6.2 million employees with an hourly wage of less than 12 euros. Women and people in East Germany should benefit disproportionately from the increase.

Different reactions

The minimum wage increase was a core promise made by Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the SPD election campaign. At the same time, it is planned to raise the limit for mini-jobs from 450 to 520 euros. From the point of view of the FDP, this is positive for more than six million mini-jobbers.

Reactions to the proposed legislation varied. The employers’ association BDA criticized that politicians were breaking the promise that the minimum wage commission would set the wage limit. In this body, employers and unions usually determine the increments. According to the law, the commission should only become responsible again after the unscheduled increase.

The German trade union federation criticized the fact that the mini-job limit should be expanded. Millions of employees are still not covered by social insurance. The Union faction announced that it would abstain from voting. “I think it’s right that the minimum wage increases to 12 euros,” said deputy parliamentary group leader Alexander Dobrindt of the “Augsburger Allgemeine” according to the advance notice. “The link with new, unnecessary bureaucratic requirements for the economy, such as excessive documentation requirements, is wrong.”

12 euros for minimum basic security after 45 years of work

According to the federal government, without a basic pension supplement, more than 12 euros per hour would be required to end up above the basic security after 45 years of work. An hourly wage of 12.97 euros would be necessary, according to the answer to a request from the AfD parliamentary group, which is available to the German Press Agency. Full-time work with 38.5 working hours per week is assumed. Taking into account the basic pension, an hourly wage of 7.72 euros would be necessary.

The AfD MP Jürgen Pohl, who asked the question, told the dpa that the “popular minimum wage election gift of the traffic light” does not keep what it promises. Even 12 euros does not protect against poverty in old age.