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Business

ECB to hire more staff for crisis management

The European Central Bank has confirmed media reports on the recruitment of additional staff. The ECB said there would be 40 new employees to cope with an increasing workload stemming from the euro area debt crisis.

An ECB spokesman on Tuesday confirmed a report in the German daily Die Welt that the ECB staff would be expanded.

The Frankfurt-based bank said the new staff would to a large extent be used to strengthen the analysis department in charge of compiling reliable data on the state of the eurozone's national economies.

The recruitment initiative comes on the back of earlier comments by ECB President Mario Draghi who had acknowledged that the tasks facing the staff had multiplied greatly as a result of the euro crisis and become more difficult and "psychologically demanding."

Union criticism

"It's no surprise that the staff see themselves as overworked, and our assessment is exactly the same," Draghi said.

But IPSO, the only recognized labor union at the ECB whose members account for more than 40 percent of the overall staff, said hiring 40 people would not be enough. In a recent IPSO poll, bank employees were found suffering from stress and overwork, with 80.1 percent complaining of a heavy workload and 74.4 percent saying it was a permanent situation.

The EC currently employs a total workforce of 2,600, with 1,200 on permanent contracts.

hg/mz (AFP, Reuters)