With a small pilot project, Spain wants to examine the effects of reduced weekly working hours with the same wage on productivity.
If the results of the two-year trial are positive, the measure could be extended to other parts of the economy, the state TV broadcaster RTVE reported on Saturday, citing the lead Ministry of Industry. A total of ten million euros are available for the project, which was published in the Official Journal on Friday.
Small and medium-sized companies with up to 249 employees in the manufacturing sector can take part. The state pays them a maximum of 150,000 euros if they reduce the weekly working hours by at least ten percent for 25 to 30 percent of the workforce, depending on the size of the company.
At the same time, in the first year of the trial, the companies involved must demonstrate organizational improvements in work processes with the aim of increasing productivity and thus compensating for the higher wage costs per hour worked. Companies are free to reduce daily working hours or introduce a four-day week.