CEOE employers’ association raises alarm: 16,764 companies close in January


The CEOE employers’ association has detected that “unfortunately, a significant destruction of the business fabric is taking place”. This is a deterioration “that translates into the loss of 17,300 self-employed, since the beginning of the year, and the closure of 16,764 companies in the month of January alone”, according to the newspaper Expansión. Thus, between the different types of companies and businesses, 34,000 enterprises have been destroyed so far this year.

The Labour Force Survey (EPA) for the last quarter of last year already reported the disappearance of a large number of self-employed workers. Specifically, 111,200 self-employed persons ceased to be registered in 2022, with a reduction of 3.48% with respect to 2021. At present, according to the EPA, there are 3,080,000 self-employed.

This analysis coincides with the start of wage negotiations with the trade unions for the three-year period 2022, 2023 and 2024, and with the worst moment of the business world’s confrontation with the government. The CEOE analysts express the organisation’s weariness with the profusion of government regulations that, in one way or another, tie down labour relations in companies and raise their wage and social costs: “In the field of labour relations alone, in the last six months there have been 14 regulations in this field or that affect the management of labour relations, without this being the object of their regulation”. A “profuse, confused and dispersed legal framework is being created”.

Among them, of course, is the pension reform approved by the Council of Ministers on the 16th. But also the Statute of the Scholarship Holder, which the Government is currently negotiating with employers and trade unions; the Employment Law; the preliminary draft of the Family Law and the Minimum Interprofessional Wage for 2023.

In addition, the law on sexual health and the voluntary interruption of pregnancy, or the law on real and effective equality for transgender people, or the law on the protection of people who report regulatory infringements and the fight against corruption. Thus, up to fourteen rules that, in one way or another, regulate labour relations in companies and also increase their costs.

Therefore, the employers also ask the government to provide companies with “a sustainable cost structure in an inflationary global context, with a constant increase in production costs, and highly competitive”.

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The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.