Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce
celebrates Forum and Conversation on the Labor Reform 2022

October 26, 2022, San Juan, P.R.—The Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce (PRCC) and its Human Resources and Labor Committee held the Forum and Conversation: Labor Reform 2022. This is part of the efforts by the PRCC of offering guidance, education and professional training for all those entrepreneurs interested in contributing to the economic development of our island.

“The attendees learned about the status of the claim filed by the Fiscal Oversight Board against the Government, what they can do in what the lawsuit is clarified and what innovative adjustments they can incorporate into the day-to-day administration of their human resources. In addition, the opportunity to hear, firsthand, an economist, as well as several former Labor Secretaries opining on this issue so transcendental for our economy was a huge opportunity to absorb information and use it to help achieve the Puerto Rico we want,” said Jaime L. Sanabria, co-chair of the Human and Labor Resources Committee of the PRCC.

The PRCC as a “voice and action of private enterprise” has been active in different forums where its opposition to the recently approved Labor Reform has been denounced. This is because he understands that it threatens Puerto Rican businessmen and the investment climate on the island. The union pointed out that it was approved in the Legislative Assembly without having the specialized knowledge of the Department of Finance, the Office of Management and Budget (OGP), or Financial Advisory Authority and Fiscal Agency (AAFAF) to know the real economic impact it would have on government collections or with future State revenues or with the projections or estimates contemplated by the Oversight Board in the Adjustment Plan. Fiscal. The Chamber has repeatedly stressed the importance of having a specialized, trained, prepared and competitive workforce. For this reason, according to the union, the private sector has not needed legislation to pay wages higher than the minimum, offer other marginal benefits, give flexibility to labor agreements for the benefit of workers, not only to recruit them, but to retain them and in most cases help them, because they have become the extended family.

“The approved Labor Reform should contain an estimate of costs and a certification of compliance or non-compliance with the approved Fiscal Plan. In this, a government entity with expertise in budget and finance evaluates the impact that the measure has on projected revenues and expenses. In addition to providing continuing education credits through this series of events, we are consistent in our stance in defense of private enterprise by providing the information and tools necessary for better decision-making,” said PRCC President Cameron McKenzie.

The event was attended by economist Chantal Benet Arbona, Chief Operations Officer of the firm Inteligencia Económica, Inc., who offered an Economic X-ray of the Island. Meanwhile, the discussion was moderated by Lcdo. Jaime Sanabria, labor partner of ECIJA-SBGB and professor at the School of Law at the University of Puerto Rico and Lcda. Julybeth Alicea Rodriguez, Director of Human Resources, International Aireko Construction LLC. The invited panelists were: Gabriel Maldonado González, secretary of the Department of Labor and Human Resources of Puerto Rico and the former secretaries of the Department of Labor and Human Resources of Puerto Rico, Lcdo. Carlos J. Rivera Santiago and Lcdo. Ruy N. Delgado Zayas, who is also the owner and legal advisor in the Labor area. Likewise, the Expresident and Advisor of the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce, Juan Carlos Agosto, also participated as a panelist in the discussion.

The Human Resources and Labor Committee is in charge of studying the labor legislation that is located in the Legislative Assembly, as well as the regulations and legislation in force, and will recommend the necessary amendments to maintain an adequate climate in worker-employer interaction. It promotes the thorough revision of labor laws to make them more flexible and temper to the new economic order characterized by globalization and market opening. It remains attentive to changes in the legislation on federal minimum wage, on layoffs and the working day. It offers recommendations to the Board of Directors of the Chamber and its president regarding measures to promote labor productivity in the public and private sectors.

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Contac: Karen Garnik, APR


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