Ground transport services, flights and ferries were disrupted in Greece after a nationwide 24-hour strike began over higher wages.
Greek workers have begun a 24-hour nationwide strike to demand higher wages to match rising inflation, which has disrupted ground transport, flights and ferry services.
High energy prices and soaring costs of living have sparked strikes and protests across Europe this month, including in Germany, France and Spain.
The nationwide walkout in Greece – the second this year called by private and public sector unions representing more than 2.5 million workers – is expected to culminate in the coming weeks. protests outside parliament on Wednesday night.
Ferries have docked and bus, train and subway staffers are expected to cause travel chaos in the capital.
Some flights were grounded as air traffic controllers planned to join the walkout between 08:00 and 14:00 GMT.
Inflation peaked at 12%
While the Greek economy is growing at almost double the rate of the euro zone this year thanks to a recovery in tourism, inflation is near a 30-year high of 12%, one of the highest. of the 19 countries that share the euro.
The General Confederation of Greek Labor (GSEE), the main private organization, said: “Workers… are fighting against inflation that has suffocated Greek households, jungle-like conditions in the market. labor, against the burdens they had carried on their backs for many years. industry union.
GSEE said the government was “mandatory” to take measures to tackle inflation because high energy costs and basic goods were ingrained in people’s disposable incomes.
Together with the Federation of Public Sector Officials (ADEDY), the organization is demanding an increase in the minimum wage, currently around 713 euros ($717) per month, and the restoration of collective labor laws.
The conservative government has spent more than 9 billion euros ($9 billion) since September 2021 on electricity subsidies and other measures to ease the burden of rising energy and fuel costs for farmers and households. families and businesses.
It has promised to increase pensions next year for the first time since the country’s financial crisis and push the minimum wage further.