Daniel Viaña Madrid


Updated Monday, February 19, 2024-22:56

The Executive already has in place the

ambitious public procurement plan

that it wants to develop during the current legislature. The diagnosis is clear: a very relevant part of the civil servants are going to retire in the coming years and, in addition, the Government wants to expand the workforce of public workers to offer, they explain, better services to citizens. The result is that in subsequent years there will be a boom in public employment, starting with this year's job offer, which will remain at record levels.

Various government sources share not only the diagnosis, which was already outlined by the Minister of Public Function himself, José Luis Escrivá, recently in Congress, but they confirm the plan. They remember, for example, that in a decade six out of every 10 workers from the General State Administration will retire. Or, also, that public employment represents 16% of total employment while the OECD average is 18%, which represents

a difference of about 400,000 potential new civil servants


Furthermore, measures such as the elimination of the replacement rate announced by Escrivá only influence the Executive's determined commitment to expand the workforce. In this process, the Government also

wants to attract young talent

, with high qualifications and capacity in the use of new technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence. The Executive is aware that the future lies there and that the public sector cannot be oblivious to it.

Therefore, the Government's plan is not going to be limited to calling for public employment offers and increasing the number of civil servants. They also want to make the Administration a more attractive place, with career paths and even attract talent from the private sector, as explained in Public Function. At this point, the short-lived Miquel Iceta, who was barely six months at the head of the Ministry, even indicated that the option of increasing salaries beyond the agreed annual increases would be considered, although subsequently neither Montero nor Escrivá have referred to this. question.

But the starting point, the Government adds, is already positive in terms of demand, because they have detected that there is an unequivocal interest in a relevant part of societies and young people to become part of the Public Administration.

This entire plan, however, will very significantly increase the number of workers who depend on the public sector. And if we add the equally growing number of pensioners, the figures are very relevant. Right now, according to the latest statistical bulletin of personnel at the service of Public Administrations,

public workers reach three million

. The Active Population Survey (EPA) goes even further, and points out that the number of people employed in the public sector is 3.6 million, and data from the Ministry of Social Security show that the number of pensioners exceeds nine million.

For all of this to be sustainable, and even more so if these numbers are to continue increasing, the private sector must also create employment at a significant speed. Not only that, but this work must also be of the highest quality possible so that contributions in the form of contributions and taxes are also higher. A formidable challenge that is also part of the Government's objectives, as the Minister of Economy himself, Carlos Body, pointed out yesterday. During the inauguration ceremony of senior officials of the Ministry, he stated that he will work to achieve "

full employment

" and raise the "


" of companies.

Salary increase

But the most immediate thing, within the Public Service, is the salary increase corresponding to 2024 that has not yet been applied and the unions are demanding. The Government will approve it through the General State Budgets (PGE) that it wants to process before next spring, but the representatives of public workers asked again yesterday that it be applied now.

"The Government must arbitrate the appropriate legislative formulas to make the 2024 increase effective

without having to wait for the Budget law

," stated UGT and CCOO. The fear that Junts will block public accounts is evident, and the Executive itself is already considering alternative options in case the Budgets ultimately do not go ahead. In any case, this 2% increase will be added to the 3.5% that salaries increased in 2023 and also in 2022, and could be increased by an additional 0.5% depending on the evolution of inflation.