From 2023 the working day will have a reduction of one hour, that is, they will no longer work 48 hours a week but 47. This change in working hours obeys Law 2101, of 2021, «which aims to gradually reduce the weekly working day, without reducing wages or affecting the acquired rights and guarantees of workers”.

When talking about gradual reduction, reference is being made to article 161 of the Substantive Labor Code, which is modified: This would come into effect in July 2023 and would last until the same month of 2026. What is sought is that the country’s workers only work 42 hours a week from that year on.

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After two (2) years from the entry into force of the law, one (1) hour of the weekly working day will be reduced, remaining at 47 weekly hours. Three (3) years after the entry into force of the law, another hour of the weekly working day will be reduced, leaving 46 weekly hours. As of the fourth year, two (2) hours will be reduced each year until reaching forty-two (42) hours per week.”, can be read in the standard.

What is sought is that the country’s workers only work 42 hours a week from 2026.

It should be clarified that users and companies that want to adopt the entire new standard from July 2023 and modify the schedules of their workers will be able to do so without any type of restriction.

Of course, you must take into account that the article of the modified Substantive Labor Code establishes that the evolution of working hours must be by mutual agreement between the employee and the worker.

In addition, the law covers adolescents authorized to work, over 15 years of age and under 17 years of age; who are only allowed to work a maximum daytime shift of six hours a day -30 hours a week-.

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However, Colombia is the country that works the longest hours, when compared to other members of the OECD bloc, since it shares with Mexico.

What this new norm seeks is for Colombia to be at the level of countries like Israel, where people work 42 hours a week; although, it is still far from matching the working hours of countries such as Belgium (38 hours) and France (35 hours).

For its part, the National Association of Entrepreneurs (Andi) assures that the national economy could be affected by the measure, since “Reducing working hours does not imply that the time of production processes in a company is reduced, so more staff will have to be hired”.

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*With information from ELEMPLEO.COM