Monday, December 22, 2008

Costa Rican president asks businessmen to forgo salaries

San Jose (Xinhua) - President Oscar Arias has urged the businessmen of his country to forgo their salaries instead of cutting jobs, a newspaper reported Monday.

Arias made the call in an interview concerning the global financial crisis published Monday by local daily Diario Extra.

The president said that businessman could do without their salaries or reduce profits instead of making massive dismissals.

Arias also suggested that some sectors work less days to avoid the loss of jobs.

"I have suggested, and this is a good moment to show the generosity and solidarity of the Costa Rican people, that the owner of a company does not begin by dismissing people, but to begin by reducing expenses, cutting salaries by the half, even to reject it," Arias said.

Arias said his government has taken urgent measures to deal with the global crisis, including the approbation of a law allowing the capitalization of state-owned banks so that they can provide credit to the production sector.

The president said that 2009 will be a difficult year but he affirmed that Costa Rica is in a good position to face it because of a reduction of the country's debt during the past two years.

"Europe and U.S. are on recession. It is not the case of China nor India, neither ours, China will grow half of what it has been growing, Costa Rica will grow half or less of 3 or 3.5 percent," Arias said.

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