This International Workers’ Day Bolivians celebrate salary increases and the nine year anniversary since the nationalization of hydrocarbons under the Morales government.
Bolivian President Evo Morales announced various salary increases on Friday in honor of International Workers’ Day. The national minimum wage will increase by 15 percent from US$208 to US$239 and the general salary by 8.5 percent.
The announcement came after lengthy negotiations between government officials and representatives from Bolivia's largest trade union COB.
Between 2005-2013 alone, Bolivia has achieved an increase in real minimum wage of 104 percent, higher than any other Latin American country, according to the International Labor Organization.
In honor of International Workers’ Day Evo Morales also inaugurated the new headquarters of the Federal Workers Union of “Light and Force” (Luz y Fuerza) located in the capital La Paz.
“Unity is most important. Of course we have our differences which we have to overcome” said Morales at the inauguration. “But us, the organized workers for rights and recognition against the chief State and business owners, are first and foremost anti-imperialists, anti-capitalists, and as long as we don't give up on this, all other problems are secondary.”
According to Domingo Vasquez, the executive secretary of the Federation of Petrol Workers of Bolivia, there is reason to celebrate twice.
“We celebrate International Worker's Day and we celebrate nine years since the nationalization of hidrocarbons; an historic fact, a decision taken by President Evo Morales, by the national government,” said Domingo Vásquez.