KNOWLEDGE SESSIONS – ACTIONABLE DISCUSSIONS
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Council on Competitiveness for Greece (CompeteGR), has been organizing biweekly online knowledge sessions featuring representatives of its member companies, various associations and academia as well as other friends of the Council to discuss specific issues and put forth opinions and proposals.
Each session begins with a brief statement from Council President Mr. Simos Anastasopoulos, followed by a presentation, by Council Executive Director Dr. Venetia Koussia, on Greece’s competitive position according to international reports, and a brief introduction on each of the session’s topics by a knowledgeable and distinguished speaker.
Wednesday, 13 May, 2020
Flexibility and Support for Employment in a Rapidly Changing Labor Market – Ioannis Lixouriotis, Professor Emeritus of Labor Law, Panteion University
According to the World Economic Forum, the labor market is one of the 12 pillars of competitiveness of every economy. Unfortunately, Greece has for decades failed to address its structural issues, and as a result, its labor market is over-regulated and provides limited flexibility for employers, is unattractive to the workforce, and is a far cry from the standard of the international investment community.
The pandemic has brought to the fore certain tools such as telework that we must utilize without coming to think of them as a panacea. It has also brought about a number of urgent measures, including the suspension of contracts and the possibility of transferring employees, which must in the coming time become the topic of methodical and structured discussion in the context of a broader public dialogue (Social Dialogue included) in order for Greece to transition to a contemporary and competitive labor environment that takes into account the views and proposals of all in the globalized labor market.
Greece does not deserve to be ranked 107th out of 140 countries in the WEF’s Global Competitiveness Report, 2019) can do much better, and we believe that the time has come for it to do so, so that, as in all markets, supply can meet demand and cast aside, to the extent that this is possible, undue barriers.