The International of Low Wages (Replay)

Published on : 25/12/2020 – 17:42

In France, the Covid-19 pandemic has brought to the forefront people we usually hear little about. Cashiers, delivery men, orderlies, and many others, whose functions were discovered to be essential to the functioning of our societies and to what extent they were poorly paid.

(Replay of September 26, 2020)

This question of low incomes is not a discovery. Since 2018, the yellow vests movement has put it on the front page of French news. Wages are not increasing and are not sufficient, for the lowest among them, to ensure a standard of living in line with the development of the country. The question is not, however, limited to France. It is a global problem, we will find out. Hence the questions asked during the show: why are salaries stagnating? Is it a coincidence or the result of a deliberate policy? Is it possible to return to a phase of generalized wage increases?

To answer it, two guests :

– Patrick Artus is chief economist at Natixis bank and associate professor at the Paris School of Economics. He just published, published by Odile Jacob, a book called 40 years of wage austerity, how to get out of it ?

Philippe Askenazy is a research director at the CNRS, professor at the École Normale Supérieure. His latest work Sharing of wealth appeared at Odile Jacob. The previous book, All pensioners, will appear in its expanded and updated version in January 2021 in English under the title: Share the Wealth : How to End the Rentier Capitalism. It will be at Verso book.

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This is the testimony of an employee of Carrefour stores during a demonstration organized in September in Paris by trade unions. Among the demands the rise in wages. David Baché from RFI’s Economics Department was on site.

Eco from here Report / Yamani Ouardia Carrefour

The salary question is now turning into uneasiness, as we can see in France, through the “markets for employment and dignity”. One of them took place in Marseille. This is an Eco from here report Eco from elsewhere signed Stéphane Burgatt.

Eco from here Report / Salaries Marseille

Another example with what is happening in Turkey where, after several years of strong growth under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the economy has been mired in difficulties since 2016, including double-digit inflation and a failing currency. The purchasing power of Turks is all the more affected as their wages do not increase, against a background of structural unemployment. In Istanbul, it is a report byAnne Andlauer​​​​​​​.

Eco from here Report / Turkey salaries

In Quebec, about 20% of workers are considered poorly paid. A relatively stable proportion for 10 years, but the age of the people concerned is increasing. In other words, it is not a question of student jobs, but in large part of citizens who will keep this low remuneration throughout their careers. In general, the service sector, whether it is childcare, catering, or sales in food stores remains poorly paid. Pascale guéricolas met some of these employees in Quebec.


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