Monday, Jun 05, 2023

Apede: recovery measures are urgent due to deterioration of the business structure

Apede: recovery measures are urgent due to deterioration of the business structure

The Panamanian Association of Business Executives notes in a statement that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a weakening in the business structure, which is advancing every day and putting the future of hundreds of thousands of jobs at risk.

Apede indicates that the business platform of the nation, made up mostly of micro, small and medium-sized companies, has run out of liquidity and if the current scenario continues, many will have to close permanently.

For the association, the proposals presented by the President of the Republic, Laurentino Cortizo, in his speech to the Nation, are in need of immediate and concrete management plans to make the announced financial aid viable.

It is imperative to define the new reopening scheme that allows, within the possibilities, to prepare gradual and safe plans for the resumption of operations of the affected companies. Likewise, citizens need to know the plan to contain the pandemic that should be linked to a social plan for attention and prevention of contagion of vulnerable populations, highlights Apede.

Deeper and more realistic measures

Regarding the tripartite table that was held in relation to the labor situation that we face, the employers' association points out that the private sector came in a unified way and with a patriotic spirit, convinced that the problems of society are only resolved through dialogue, with the deepening of democracy and the rule of law, and not with failed totalitarian visions.

Apede acknowledge that agreements were reached, however they point that the result of the tripartite table did not address issues that are critical to the reopening and that the spirit of realism was lacking to understand that the temporary measures.

Apede points out that the measures must be deeper and two key issues that must be urgently addressed:

• The gradual reactivation process, understanding that biosecurity measures and the market situation do not allow a full reintegration of workers from the first moment.

• In the absence of consensus on the suspension of the effects of labor contracts, it is urgent to define a legally viable mechanism that provides a solution to companies that do not yet have a date defined in the reopening plan, which could be extended until the end of this year.

The private sector recorded that the legal structures that govern labor relations do not conform to the reality of the 21st century: virtuality, artificial intelligence and the so-called "big data" do not agree with regulations that have been there more 40 years.

Today more than ever, Panama requires the modernization of the State, eliminate the mechanisms that block innovation both from the incipient entrepreneur and the business sector, and de-bureaucratize the government to adapt to current conditions with clear and transparent rules leveraged in technology as an enabler of changes, concludes the association.
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