Quarterly Business Magazine

Minimum wage provisionally set at 3,600 Kyats per day

Garment manufacturers to protest against the said rate
Posted :
Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The minimum wage has been provisionally set at 450 Kyats per hour and 3,600 Kyats per day after more than two years of processing. The rate will be across the board, applying to all industries and geographical areas, said the National Committee on the 29th of June, with the exception of small enterprises with less than 15 employees and family businesses. Ko Win Zaw, the workers' representative to the committee, said that most workers were satisfied with the set wage. He further elaborated that this was a vast improvement over the current wages. U Myint Soe, president of the Myanmar Garment Manufacturers Association, said that most Factory owners and manufacturers would protest the provision in a lawful way. He further stated that other industries might have different perceptions but the MGMA members would definitely object. Shwelinban industrial zone managing committee chairman U Aye Thaung commented that this provision probably will not affect established Factories but will pose difficulties to newly founded ones. All stakeholders have a time window of two weeks to formally lodge complaints and protestations. The 7th meeting on minimum wage was held on the 22nd and 23rd of this month involving workers, factory owners and government officials. The workers proposed 4,000 Kyats and the manufacturers were at 2,500 Kyats.On the 24th, at the National Committee meeting, the consensus was on 3,600 Kyats per day. U Aye Myint, the union minister for Labor, Employment and Social Security have said that the provision will be reviewed should there be formal complaints and those needing revision would be revised. If there were no objections, the provision will become effective within 2 months. Meanwhile, the township labor offices have already started sending out surveys to all Factories querying whether they were willing and able to pay the approved minimum wage. The survey also asked the factories would they close down if they could not pay. Some factory owners were unduly alarmed and some were disappointed with the way they were being pressured. They believed that they should be receiving material and moral support at these difficult times and this kind of heavy handed tactics was uncalled for and unwonted.

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