First cabinet council meeting of the year held to address job protection

In addition to receiving instructions from the President, the ministers took advantage of the gathering to voice their differences on the collective negotiation bill.

03 de Marzo de 2009 | 14:42 | Karina Morales, El Mercurio Online

SANTIAGO.- "Employment, employment, employment". This was how the Minister of Government Affairs, Francisco Vidal, resumed the instructions given by President Michelle Bachelet at this year's first cabinet council meeting, held today at La Moneda.

At the gathering, the President and her ministers analyzed the distribution of the extraordinary $40 thousand-peso bonus that began yesterday and went over some of the most important measures that need to be taken to confront the international economic crisis.

"The President has ordered all of her ministers to work on one objective: reducing unemployment", he added.

At the meeting, government ministers and the head of Labor, Claudia Serrano, were also able to resolve differences with regards to the date the collective negotiation bill will be sent to Congress.

While Vidal indicated that "these matters are always addressed amiably", because "coordination and tact" are crucial, the minister did admit that "perhaps" he had "gotten ahead of himself" by assuring that the initiative would be sent to Parliament before May 21st.

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