Verdi sees partial success: Amazon is raising wages in Germany

Verdi sees partial success
Amazon is raising wages in Germany

23,000 people work for the online retailer Amazon in Germany – 5,000 are to be added soon. The company wants to pay them at least twelve euros an hour in the future. Verdi calls for an even bigger leap.

The online retailer Amazon is increasing the entry-level wage in Germany. As of July, all employees at the logistics locations are to receive a converted starting wage of at least 12 euros gross per hour from day one, as the group announced. “From July every colleague in Germany will earn the equivalent of 12 euros or more per hour, regardless of where they work,” said Amazon Germany boss Ralf Kleber. So far, the starting wages for the German logistics centers have been between 11.30 and 12.70 euros, depending on the region.

According to Amazon, all shipping employees receive a wage increase. The starting wage is expected to rise to at least EUR 12.50 in autumn 2022. The Verdi union said actions and strikes had had an impact on the online retailer. “The announcement of higher incomes is probably the least that can be asked of a company that has earned a golden nose in the past few months,” said Orhan Akman, who is responsible for retail and mail order at Verdi.

Verdi demands 12.50 euros

But Amazon still lags behind Verdi’s tariff demands in retail and mail order. “We demand a minimum income of 12.50 euros for all employees,” he said. This is the only way to limit the risk of later old-age poverty due to insufficient pensions. “We also demand a table-effective salary increase of 4.5 percent plus 45 euros,” said Akman.

According to its own information, Amazon has invested more than 28 billion euros in Germany since 2010 and created more than 23,000 permanent jobs. Another 5,000 jobs are to be added in the current year. Amazon now employs well over a million people worldwide

Amazon has been in a clinch with Verdi over collective bargaining disputes for years. At the end of May, Verdi also accused the world’s largest online retailer of monitoring its employees. Akman had spoken at the hearing in the European Parliament on the corporate practices of the US group.

Kleber has now declared that Amazon is a fair employer, treats everyone with respect and offers its employees excellent services and career opportunities from day one. In this way, the workforce receives a whole range of additional benefits. These included, among other things, bonus payments based on work performance, employee shares, life and occupational disability insurance and a four-digit training grant for further training. Amazon has decided to become the best employer in the world, said Germany boss Kleber.