The adjustment plan has undergone numerous modifications since its adoption in the Council of Ministers on August 12. Among them, the most important is the elimination of the solidarity tax that indicates that those who exceeded annuities have to pay 90,000 euros. However, it introduces a 3% tax on income over 500,000 per year. In addition, this latest change has opted to raise the VAT from 20% to 21% and will also include an amendment to the text for the progressive delay of women’s retirement age of in the private sector, 60 to 65 years, starting on 2014.
The CIGL, which has five million registered members, believes that the new austerity measures are unfair because they affect the workers due to their labor market reforms and the privatization of public services.
The strike was called on August 23 and is expected to last eight hours – from 9 pm local time (7.00 GMT) to 17 pm (15.00 GMT) – in nearly 100 cities, including the largest ones in the country.
The protests have affected transportation, departures of flights, trains, buses and subways have been cancelled. In addition, several touristic sites remained closed.