Penyelarasan Gaji Minimum_2

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SUMBER:
JURNAL
&
MAJALAH
I
SUMBER MANUSIA
I
Bpah Minimum Waiar
Dilaksanakan di Malavsiail
Oleh OR MUSTAFA QAKIAN
(Kolej Yayasan pelaJilranCMruAruRruA,I_ _
K
ONGHES Kesatuan Sckcrja r.oIalaysia
(MTlJC) dan Kongrcs Kesatuan Pckcrja dalarn Pcrkhidrn;Hi\ll Awam
(CUEPACSj tclah mcncfldangkan supaya
kcrajaan mcnimbang sClllula pcnggcnaan upah minilllum scbanyak RM I ,200
kcpada pMil pckcrja llnlUk meningk,llbtl kcbajikan lllcrcka.Gcsaan ini
dilakukan rncmandangkan ~HlJC berlanggungjawab lIlcndesak kcrajaan
utltuk rncnghargai surnhangan bcsar
pihak pckcrja yung rncnjadi pcnggcrak
kcpada pcmbangunan ekonomi ncgara.
$clama inL hubungan pekcrja-llliljikan-kcraj<lilll lllcrupakan satu pertali;1Il
eral all\ara liga pillak yang sarna-sarna
bcrganding balm Iltlluk mcmastikan produktiviti jlckcrja. up3h buruh yang kompelitif dan pengguna<ln sumbcr rnanusia
dcngan cara yang cfisicll terus dilakubn
supaya kos pcngc1uar3n tidak mcningkat.
Pcrdana Mcntcri. [)atuk Scri Dr.
Mahalhir Mohamad Illenekankan bah3wa kerjas.ulla eral di anlara liga pihak
ini lIlarnpu mcnangkis sebarang kegiman
penyelcwcngan olch pcngusaha dan
pcnglibalan pclabur asing yang tamak
akibm kesan globalisasi dunkl. Jus!Cru.
pckerja perlu lcrus bcrganding bahu
unluk memaslikan bahawa sebarang lintlakan yang dial1lbiJ perlu mengarnbilkir,t
pihak lain.
Kcs pcrhubullgan perusahaan di
Malaysia lllcnunjukkan k;ldar yang meIlllHtskan apabila bilang,1ll pertikaian
pCrllsahaan lclah mcnurull sebanyak
0.114 bagi seliap \,000 pckerja pada
tahun 1984 kepada 0.052 pada lalulIl
1998. Kchilangan hari bckerja kcrana lin<.htkiln pcrusah'lan khususnya discbabkan mogok berkurangan dari 19.800
hari pada wtUlll 19BO kcpada 2.685 hari
pad3 lahUll 1998.
Kerajaan juga tclah mcngarnbil lindakan t1nlllk mClllulihkan kebajikan
pckcrja tcrutama scktor awam dalarn
l3elanj3wan 2000 rnclalui kcnaikan
imbuhan peru mahan. pcrnbcri<ln bOllus
scbanyak seblilan gaji dan kcnaikan 10
pcratus gaji bcrkllatkuasa pada I Janu<tri
2000.
Tindakan ini disokong olch kenyataan 1\lcntcri Sumbcr r-,·Ianusia. [)al\lk
Dr. Fong Chan Onn bahawa. "/\pa jua
upah yang ada di Malaysia hams rnclllberikan pcngiktirafan kepada pckcrja
bahawa mereka merllpakan kllmplll3n
pcnting scbagai pcnyumbang ckonorni
M3Iaysia".
Sclalll:l ini sistem inselllif lIcgara
rncrupakan SiStClll upah yang bolch
mcngambilkira keb3jikan dan kcperlu31l
pekcrja di samping rnclllclihara kc·
pentillgan pih3k lll:ljik:lI1. Sistern up3h
(G3fis Panduan Pernbaharu3n G3ji
tJcrasaskan Prodllktiviti) yang digu!>al
oleh Kcmcnlerian Surnber ~1:lIl11Si3
(1996) mCllg;unbilkim kcpcnlingan pih'lk
pckcrja dan majik311.
Di l\'lalaysia. k:tkit:lngan kerajaall
merniliki pckerjaan tctap yang dib<ly:tr
upah tTlcngikut gaji bulanan. Mercka
Illcndapat gaji tidak rncngira cllti S3kit
atau bckcrja. g3ji y3rlg st3tik rncngikllt
kellaikan tahllll3n. mend3pal pclbagai
kCl1ludahan. dibay3r el3un tencnlll, pinjat1l3l\ perul1l3h3l\ dan kcndcm,1Il deng3n bd3r faedah ernp31 pcr31lls. caru-
man Kumplllan Wang Simp,man I'ckerja
(K\VSf'1. skim f'erlubuhan Kehajikan
Sosial (Perkesol. insurans berkelolllpok,
pemberian bonu::. st'liap l<lhun dan
beb'Hl kerj,j yang rdatir rendah.
Pihak swasta juga memberikan gaji
yang fleksibcl mcngikut produktiviti dan
prcstasi scmasa organisasi, kl'lHlikan
pangkat yang pantas, faedah s<lmpingan
dan penman kesatu<ln sekerja yang tillggi
Llntuk membela kebajikan para pekcrja.
Keadaan ini menunjukkan bahawa pihak
majikan mengrl<1rgai sum bangall jlckcrjfl
sebagai ,>jen pl'tlggcrak kcmajwll1 ckonorni ncgara.
Indeks LJaya Pcrsaingan Sedlillia ;WOU
yang dikeluarkan oleh Perbadallilll
Produktiviti Kegara (NPC) menyebtll ba·
hawa Malaysia berada di lempal Kt' 2!i
disebabkan produktiviti peker·
j<l di Malaysia hanya rnem:apai
tahap lim,l peralils. Tahap produkti\'ilj yang rendah dan
kenaikall gaji yang mcndadak
akan
rncrnlmrukkan
lagi
kcadaan yang scdia ada.
Pandangan Dr. Fan Chan
Onn menunjukkan bahawa
pembangunan s\lmber 1ll,lllll'
sia di Mal(lysia sangat baik berdasarkan Indeks Persckitaran
Kerja yang lIleningkat daripada
106.0 mata kcpada 118.9 mata
dalam tcmpoh 18 tahun lalu.
!\amun, berdasarkan maklumat semasa dahlm Utusan
\1alaysia, membayangkall lerdap<ll anggaran hampir 19.000
orang lulusan Inslitut Pcngajian Tinggi
Awam dan Swasta yang mcnganggur.
Kcadaan ini agak mcmbimhangkan kerana ekonomi Malaysia kini scmakin berusaha untuk beralih daripada p-ekonollli
kepada k-ekonomi.
Berhubung dengan isu gaji minimuTll
yang utarakan oleh MTUC dan CtJEPACS
scbanyak H:Yll,ZOO, lllcnurut
Dr.
Mahathir, kerajaan tidak dapat lllcnetapkan gaji minimum tersebut kerana akan
mengakibatkan kenaikan gaji ke panls
yang terlalu tinggi. Kenaikan gilji ini akan
menyebabkan kerajaan dan pihak swasla
menanggung beban d<ln menyebllbkan
berlaku jarak gaji yang bcsar alltara
pckcrja atasan dcngan pckrrja snkongan.
Keadaan ini sccara tidak langsung
alan meningkatkan kos buruh, mengurangkan daya saingan industri dan mengurangkan pelaburan langsung asing
(FOIl. Kerajaan hanya akan berst'mju
dengan penelapan gaji minimum st'banyak RMI,200 sekiranya wlljud dalam
!ll'llingkat;ln produktiviti pekerja dun
rnajikan. pcningkatan nilai tambah
antam scklor dan kos kehidupan yang
rasiona1.
Memang diakui bahawa par,ls g<lji
minimum d,tlam lingkllngan Hr.,1400
~t'blilan b'lgi st'setf'llgah sektar sl'bagaimana yang wujud hari ini, agak rendab. Plmyelarasan lTlungkin diperlukan
pad<l masa ini. Tctapi. jib peningbmn
gaji mcncapai 20U pemtus sehingga
11\11 ,ZOO sebulan, mungkin membeban·
kall pihak majikan. Sebarang kenaikan
perlulah dilengkapi dengan kewajarilll
yang rasiunal bagi mengelakkan st'gala
y,lng dirancang lidak mernbcrikan kesan
11l'g,lIifkepada ekonomi ncgara.
Kesal\lan sekerja harus sepakat dan
mengambilkira jangkaan produktivill
hllj<lh lwliau, upah minuman akan
Illeninl:(kalkan kos sara hidllP, kos pl"
ngeluarall, pcrbczaan Kadar upah dall
llf(H"\uklil'ili, pcnganggurall meningkal,
kebajikan pckcrja diabaikan, mern·
behankan kedudukan kew<lngan ncgara,
Il1cngurangkan persaingan ckonomi
ncgara, 111l'ningkalk<tn pinjaman kewangan negara, inflasi nwningkat. kcsatuan
sekerja lebih lwrkuasa daripada majikan,
kllnlllg l_lt'laburan langsung asing (FOil.
Slrllktllr llpah ncgara yang relatif tinggi
hl'rlJilnding ncgara maju dan kesej<lhlemall rakyat tcrbantul.
Saya bcrpendapal. upah minimUlTl ini
mampu meningkatkan stllllbangan scktor pertama Ipert<lnian, prrhlllanan, perlombongan d,Hl kuari) vang memiliki
nil'li tumb'lh yang linggi kcpada sLlmbangan ekonomi herbanding seklOr kcdua (pcrindustrian dan
pcmhinaan]
dan
kel iga
(pcrkhidmatanl. Hal ini disebabkan sebahagi,U1 hesar rakyat Malaysia (40 peratus) tcrlibat dalam seklor pcrtama yang
memiliki struktur upah yang
tidak mencntu. Mereka sangal
bcrgantung kcpada keadaan
rnusim dan cuaca untuk rnernpcrolch pendapatan dan masih
I11cnyumbang sebanyak 4:; peratus kepada ekonami ncgara.
Dengan pelaksanaan upah
minimum ini mampu menjana
pertlllllbuhan dan sumbangan
sektor pertama, meningkatkan
prnggunaan
buruh
yang
('knomik, ITlcningkarkan produktiviti
Kt'rja, mcngatasi kadar pengangguran
slruktuml ncgara. meningkatkan pelahuran swasta dalam sektor pertama,
rneningkalkan eksport negara dan sctcrusnya memberikan kelehihan kcpada
seklOr pertama sebagai pcnyumbang
eksporll1egara pada masa hadapan.
Ptmgalaman Malaysia daJam nwngharungi krisis ekonomi telah menjadikan
rakyal Malaysia lebih prihalin dan memahami akan cabaran terhadap ekonomi
tlcgal'a, Pckcrja-majikan-kerajaan pcrlu
mcncari pendekatan dan formula baru
untuk mencapai kejayaan ekonomi yang
lebih l11elllberangsangkan dan menya·
kinkan.
Upah minimum ini jika dilihat
IT1l'ngikUl slllllbangan sektor ekonumi
rnampu mcnjana sumbangan sektor perlama untllk mcnjadi ejen penggerak
kcpada perlumbuhan ekonomi negara
untuk menangani kesan globalisasi
ckonomi dunia.
Pihak swasta juga memberikan
gaji yangfleksibel mengikut
produktiviti dan prestasi semasa
organisasi, kenaikan pangkat
yang pantas,faedah sampingan
dan peranan kesatuan sekerja
tinggi untuk membela kebajikan
para pekerja.
yang tinggi yang boleh disumbangkan
olch setiap pekerja. Bagi seklOr kerajaan,
cara yang paling mudah unluk melipal'
gandakan jumlah hasil adalah dengan
menaikkaTl Kadar cukai. 11al ini kerana,
keO<likan Kadar cukai boleh digunakan
untuk membayar gaji pckcrja. Cukai
ll1crupakan hasil utama kerajaan dan jiku
gaga!' proses peminjaman dipt'rlukan
dan hal ini akan menjejaskan kedudukan
kewangan negara.
Manakala bagi pihak swasla, kenaikan gaji minimum ini akall mcnycbabkan kenaikan kas pengeluaran dan
selerusnya menychabkan pihak majikan
lTlclakukan pcmbuangan pekerja (downsizing). Hal ini akan meTlyebabkan Kadar
pcngangguran dalam negara meningka\
dan setemsnya menjejaskan kt'bajikan
rakyal.
Sungguhpun begitu. saya menyokong
pendapal Prof. Dr. Mahani (BI-1,20001
yang menyebut ten lang kesan ncgalif
pelaksanaan upah minimum ini. Alllara
IWIU\ f:lW~O\lI'JtUI1000'
39
SUMBER:
INTERNET
A Minimum Wage for Malaysia
Is Malaysian Government Aiming to Suppress Wages?
Jul 24, 2007 John Walsh
Labour activists are campaigning for a national minimum wage in Malaysia where salaries are
far out of touch with cost of living. Here are the issues.
From time to time the Malaysian government is overcome with resentment towards the many
thousands of migrant workers, mostly Indonesians, in their presence and resolves to expel them
all, one way or another. A few weeks later, as the middle classes call out for affordable domestic
help and the construction sites across the country are disturbed only by the occasional passing
of tumbleweed, the policy is quietly reversed and the migrants return. Malaysia, in common with
just about every other developed or developing country of the world, cannot survive without
migrant workers. And if some of those workers are illegal or unregistered, then that probably
benefits the economy even more. The presence of migrant workers, especially those willing to
accept just about any wages no matter how low because of fear of attracting the attention of the
authorities, keeps wages for the whole country suppressed. This benefits some and hurts others;
it is reasonable to assume that the former are happy with the situation while the latter would like
to change it.
So it is with Malaysia where wage rates have become almost completely decoupled from the
cost of living. A recent salary increase for civil servants only just managed to bring them up
above the designated poverty line. The going rate for work in most of the country ranges
between 300-450 ringgits monthly while the cost of living rarely dips below 800 ringgits no
matter where in this highly diverse country one might look. Now trade unionists are becoming
unexpectedly and almost unprecedentedly bold in asking for a set minimum wage which would
enable workers to live free from the fear of poverty. Government minister Fong Chan Onn, who
represents human resources in the country, has argued that introducing a minimum wage at the
suggested rate of 900 ringgits per month would be disastrous because it would mean that
migrant workers would receive the same rate and this would lead to job losses, inflation and the
disappearance of investment overseas. The minister has rather revealed the government’s
thinking on this issue, which is to support the low-wage economy for the benefit of business
owners. This is not something that the government has freely acknowledged before.
KENYATAAN MEDIA MENGENAI HARI TERBUKA GAJI MINIMUM
Kementerian Sumber Manusia sedang mengadakan Makmal Gaji Minimum pada 7 hingga 14
Februari 2011 di Pusat Konvensyen Antarabangsa (PICC) Putrajaya. Bersempena dengan
makmal tersebut, Kementerian Sumber Manusia akan mengadakan Hari Terbuka Gaji Minimum
untuk mendapatkan maklum balas daripada orang awam seperti ketetapan berikut:
Program : Hari Terbuka Gaji Minimum
Tarikh : 12 Februari 2011 (Sabtu)
Masa : 2.00 petang – 4.30 petang
Tempat : Tingkat 18, Wisma PERKESO, Jalan Tun Razak Kuala Lumpur
Penyertaan dibuka kepada semua orang awam terutama pekerja di sektor swasta, majikan,
Pertubuhan Bukan Kerajaan (NGO) dan juga individu yang berkepentingan.
Objektif Program:
1. Merasionalisasikan pelaksanaan gaji minimum di Malaysia;
2. Platform kepada orang awam untuk memberikan pandangan dan cadangan bagi
pelaksanaan gaji minimum; dan
3. Memberi makluman berkaitan amalan terbaik pelaksanaan gaji minimum di negara lain.
Atur Cara Program
2.00 petang: Ketibaan tetamu jemputan dan orang awam
2.30 petang: Taklimat mengenai gaji minimum oleh wakil Bank Dunia
4.00 petang: Sesi soal jawab
4.30 petang: Majlis berakhir
KEMUDAHAN TEMPAT LETAK KERETA SECARA PERCUMA DISEDIAKAN DAN ORANG
AWAM DIJEMPUT HADIR.
Pengumuman
Kementerian Sumber Manusia dengan kerjasama Bank Dunia akan menganjurkan
Makmal Gaji Minimum pada 7-14 Februari 2011 bertempat di Pusat Konvensyen
Antarabangsa Putrajaya (PICC).
Kata-kata aluan Y.B Menteri
Tuan/ puan yang dihormati,
Salam 1Malaysia
Selaras dengan konsep “1Malaysia: Rakyat Didahulukan, Pencapaian Diutamakan”, Kerajaan
melalui Kementerian Sumber Manusia sedang mengkaji kemungkinan pelaksanaan gaji
minimum kebangsaan untuk pekerja sektor swasta di Malaysia. Kajian ini juga selaras dengan
hala tuju Kerajaan untuk merealisasikan Model Ekonomi Baru (MEB) yang berteraskan ekonomi
berpendapatan tinggi dan usaha mempertingkatkan taraf hidup isirumah berpendapatan rendah.
Tidak dinafikan, masih terdapat segelintir rakyat yang hidup di bawah paras Pendapatan Garis
Kemiskinan (PLI), malahan ramai pekerja yang menerima upah kurang daripada RM750
sebulan. Sebagai contoh, analisis gaji yang ditawarkan oleh majikan dalam program Fast Track
KSM bagi bulan Oktober - Disember 2009, menunjukkan gaji purata pekerja tempatan seperti
dalam jadual berikut: Jadual 1 : FastTrack: Gaji dan Elaun Purata Pekerja Tempatan mengikut
Sub-Industri Sektor Pembuatan
Berdasarkan kiraan gaji purata bagi lima sub-sektor berkenaan iaitu Elektrik & Elektronik,
Perabot, Plastik, Sarung Tangan Getah dan Tekstil, gaji pokok purata adalah RM626.76
sebulan manakala gaji kasar purata termasuk elaun-elaun tetap adalah RM762.20 sebulan.
Peningkatan kos sara hidup terutamanya harga barang keperluan harian yang semakin
meningkat, golongan berpendapatan rendah ini menghadapi kesulitan untuk memenuhi
keperluan hidup mereka terutamanya di kawasan bandar. Cadangan penetapan gaji minimum
kebangsaan sekurang-kurangnya akan dapat mengurangkan permasalahan ini.
Namun demikian, sesetengah pihak berpendapat penetapan gaji minimum kebangsaan akan
membawa kepada implikasi negatif kerana ia boleh menjejaskan kuasa pasaran (distort market
forces). Pelaksanaan gaji minimum juga boleh menyebabkan ‘kehilangan’ beberapa kategori
pekerjaan di peringkat rendah yang masih ada permintaan terutamanya untuk golongan yang
mudah terjejas (vulnerable groups) khususnya mereka yang bekerja di luar bandar dan secara
tidak langsung akan meningkatkan kadar pengangguran negara.
Sehubungan itu, Kementerian Sumber Manusia amat mengalu-alukan sebarang pandangan,
pendapat, idea, cadangan dan komen yang boleh disalurkan melalui blog ini atau menerusi email: [email protected] bagi membantu Kerajaan dalam menggubal dasar dan
strategi mengenai gaji minimum.
Untuk mendapatkan maklumat lanjut berhubung dengan pelaksanaan gaji minimum, sila layari
pautan gaji minimum yang disediakan.
Kerjasama tuan/ puan amat saya hargai dan didahului dengan berbanyak-banyak ucapan
terima kasih.
Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam
Menteri Sumber Manusia
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Pandangan MEF Mengenai Gaji Minimum
Pembangunan Ekonomi Yang Tidak Seragam
Dalam membincangkan keberkesanan pelaksanaan Gaji Minimum di Malaysia, keadaan
struktur ekonomi semasa negara perlu diambil kira. Perkembangan pesat yang berlaku
sekarang sememangnya dihargai dengan kewujudan sektor yang besar di kawasan luar bandar.
Di kawasan luar bandar, perusahaan yang dijalankan adalah perniagaan yang sangat kecil
seperti kedai runcit, warung, perkhidmatan bengkel motor dan kiosh-kiosh petrol. Data
menunjukkan bahawa sebanyak 99 peratus syarikat di Malaysia adalah dalam terdiri daripada
Industri Kecil dan Sederhana (IKS). Sekiranya penetapan gaji minimum dilaksanakan maka ini
hanya akan menyebabkan banyak syarikat IKS terpaksa ditutup dan mengakibatkan kesukaran
kepada penduduk sekitarnya. Kerajaan seharusnya membantu membangunkan syarikatsyarikat kecil ini dan tidak membebankan mereka dengan penetapan Gaji Minimum
kebangsaan. Selain itu, ini akan meningkatkan kadar penggangguran kerana syarikat-syarikat
kecil tidak dapat meneruskan operasi mereka kerana kos buruh yang semakin meningkat.
Sistem Sedia Ada Memadai
Buat masa ini, secara prinsipya upah ditentukan berdasarkan kepada kuasa pasaran dan bagi
pekerja yang mempunyai kesatuan, mereka akan berunding dengan majikan dalam
menentukan kadar upah yang dipersetujui oleh pihak pekerja dan majikan. Kaedah penetapan
upah ini membolehkan terdapat perbezaan upah berdasarkan kepada perbezaan bentuk
perniagaan yang dijalankan oleh syarikat, saiz syarikat, lokasi perniagaan di mana terdapatnya
perbezaan dalan kos dalam menjalankan perniagaan. Kaedah ini adalah jauh lebih baik
daripada penetapan kadar gaji minimum. Undang-undang perburuhan juga memberikan ruang
yang mencukupi kepada pekerja dan majikan untuk berunding dalam menentukan kadar gaji
yang sesuai untuk mereka. Undang-undang memperuntukan bahawa Perjanjian Kolektif akan
dijadikan kontrak dalam pekerjaan yang akan digunapakai kepada semua pekerja dan
membatalkan kontrak-kontrak yang lain. Perjanjian Kolektif ini tidak akan dipindah atau
dibatalkan tanpa adanya persetujuan di antara pekerja dan majikan.
Dalam konteks Malaysia, keharmonian industri adalah matlamat yang harus dikekalkan. Sistem
perhubungan industri yang wujud sekarang membenarkan majikan dan pekerja menyelesaikan
sebarang masalah yang wujud secara bersama. Sekiranya persepakatan gagal dicapai maka
khidmat perundingan akan digunakan. Apabila persepakatan gagal juga dicapai maka
Mahkamah Perusahaan akan mendengar perkara tersebut dan memberikan arahan yang akan
mengikat kedua-dua pihak apa yang lebih penting ialah mengelakkan tindakan perindustrian.
Sistem yang ada sekarang adalah memadai dan sekiranya penetapan gaji minimum
kebangsaan dilaksanakan, ia akan menyebabkan sistem tidak fleksibel dan akan mengganggu
hubungan di antara majikan dan pekerja.
Mereka yang mengusulkan penetapan gaji minimum kebangsaan berbuat demikian
berdasarkan pendapat yang salah di mana pekerja akan menikmati gaji yang setimpal;
mengelakkan eksploitasi; mengurangkan kemiskinan; dan memastikan upah yang dibayar
adalah sesuai dengan kerja yang dijalankan. Seharusnya kita tidak menyatakan bahawa objektif
ini hanya boleh dicapai jika sekiranya perkembangan ekonomi memberangsangkan. Ekonomi
yang sentiasa berkembang maju akan turut meningkatkan penerimaan kadar upah kerana
peningkatan kemakmuran negara akan meningkatkan upah. Penetapan gaji minimum tidak
menjamin kepada perkembangan ekonomi negara.
Gaji Minimum Akan Menjejaskan Daya Saing
Perniagaan yang dijalankan berkait rapat dengan senario persaingan dan kos untuk
menjalankan perniagaan adalah fakor penting dalam menjalankan sesuatu urusniaga.
Kesannya bukan sahaja ingin mengekalkan penglibatan berterusan para pelabur asing bahkan
juga keupayaan Kerajaan untuk menarik para pelabur asing yang baru. Hal ini terbukti
sekiranya kos buruh meningkat melebihi paras yang difikirkan berpatutan oleh majikan, ini akan
menyebabkan sesetengah majikan bersedia untuk menutup operasi mereka dan berpindah ke
negara lain yang menawarkan kos buruh yang lebih munasabah. Terdapat banyak syarikat
yang terpaksa menutup operasi mereka semasa krisis ekonomi yang berlaku baru-baru ini.
Meskipun terdapat tanda-tanda pemulihan ekonomi, namum pertumbuhannya tidak menyeluruh
dan prestasi syarikat dan sektor adalah tidak sekata.
MEF berpendapat bahawa dalam menggubal dasar yang tepat berkaitan dengan penetapan
upah, adalah penting untuk menanamkan kepercayaan di kalangan pelabur asing dalam
ekonomi; membantu syarikat mendapatkan kembali kos daya saing; membuka peluang
pekerjaan dan mengurangkan kadar pengangguran. Penetapan Gaji Minimum Kebangsaan
jelas menunjukkan bahawa ianya adalah satu langkah yang kurang sesuai. Apa yang Kerajaan,
Majikan dan Kesatuan sekerja perlu lakukan adalah mempromosikan dan mempraktikkan
sistem upah berdasarkan kepada prestasi.
MEF menyokong pendirian Kerajaan bahawa Malaysia buat masa ini masih belum bersedia
untuk melaksanakan dasar gaji minimum, ini kerana sekiranya dasar ini dilaksanakan dikhuatiri
akan menyebabkan para pelabur asing meninggalkan negara ini seterusnya akan menghalang
minat para pelabur asing yang baru untuk melabur di dalam negara.
Aspek Statistik dalam penentuan gaji minimum
Sistem Gaji minimum walaubagaimana pun bentuknya, tidak akan berjaya berfungsi kecuali
bepandukan statistik yang tepat, boleh dipercayai dan terkini berdasarkan data-data seperti
pendapatan, upah, harga dan ciri-ciri penerima upah (jantina, pekerjaan, tahap kemahiran dan
sebagainya). Ia memerlukan sistem sokongan statistik perburuhan berdasarkan kepada
program kajian establishment yang dilakukan secara berkala, kajian guna tenaga isi rumah
yang kerap, kajian perdapatan dan perbelanjaan isi rumah dan pengumpulan statistik yang
berterusan daripada sistem pentadbiran. Melaksankan penetapan gaji minimum bukanlah suatu
perkara yang mudah. Menurut Konvensyen ILO 131 dan Cadangan 135 mengenai gaji
minimum yang merujuk khas kepada negara-negara membangun telah menyatakan bahawa
kreteria-kriteria penetapan gaji minimum adalah seperti berikut; keperluan asas pekerja dan isi
rumahnya, upah umum dalam negara, kos sara hidup, faedah keselamatan sosial, standard
hidup yang relatif dengan kumpulan sosial yang lain; dan faktor ekonomi, termasuklah
keperluan perkembangan ekonomi, tahap produktiviti, keinginan untuk mencapai dan
mengekalkan tahap tenaga kerja yang tinggi. Adalah sukar bagi Malaysia untuk menentukan
gaji minimum yang “tepat” dengan menganbil kira kewajaran yang sepatutnya diberikan untuk
setiap faktor-faktor tersebut.
Pandangan Kesatuan Pekerja
Merapatkan jurang antara kaya dan miskin serta mengurangkan kemiskinan
Beberapa negara di sekitar Malaysia telah melaksanakan peraturan gaji minimum kebangsaan
seperti Thailand dan Filipina. Walau bagaimana pun, tiada bukti kukuh untuk mengatakan
bahawa nasib pekerja-pekerja di sana lebih baik berbanding pekerja di Malaysia berikutan
penetapan gaji minimum. Sebaliknya, pendapatan pekerja di Malaysia semenjak kemerdekaan
secara konsisten telah meningkat dalam semua sektor tanpa penetapan gaji minimum
kebangsaan.
Konsep gaji minimum sering disamaertikan dengan konsep minimum living wage untuk
membolehkan pekerja memenuhi keperluan asas mereka. Apabila kita bercakap mengenai
keperluan asas, kita merujuk kepada golongan miskin, mereka yang berada di bawah
pendapatan garis kemiskinan seperti yang dinyatakan oleh Kerajaan. Istilah ‘gaji’ bermaksud
kewujudan kontrak pekerjaan antara majikan dan pekerja. Walau bagaimana pun, mereka yang
berada di bawah pendapatan garis kemiskinan selalunya tiada pekerjaan bergaji, contohnya
penduduk miskin di kawasan luar bandar.
Sekalipun peraturan gaji minimum dilaksanakan, ia tidak dapat membantu mereka yang miskin
untuk keluar dari kepompong kemiskinan memandangkan mereka bukan pekerja yang bergaji.
Jika demikian, apa perlunya gaji minimum? Pihak MTUC semestinya berpandangan bahawa ia
akan meningkatkan kadar gaji terendah, namun demikian, ia seharusnya bergantung kepada
tahap yang ditentukan sebagai gaji minimum. Perkara ini adalah sangat penting untuk
dipertimbangkan. Indonesia dan Thailand contohnya menetapkan kadar gaji minimum yang
terlalu rendah sehingga ianya tidak menggambarkan “minimum try me wage”, yang mungkin
bertujuan untuk memastikan ramai majikan mematuhinya.
Namun demikian, terdapat keburukan di sebalik kepatuhan majikan yang tinggi terhadap kadar
gaji minimum yang ditetapkan. Sesetengah majikan mungkin mampu membayar gaji yang lebih
tinggi tetapi memilih untuk tidak berbuat demikian terutamanya semasa kadar pengangguran
tinggi seperti yang sedang berlaku di Indonesia. Pandangan bahawa gaji minimum akan
meningkatkan kadar gaji terendah – adakalanya melindungi golongan yang mudah terjejas –
adalah tidak kena pada tempatnya dan tidak dapat dibuktikan.
Satu laporan Suruhanjaya Diraja di United Kingdom pada tahun 1968 menyimpulkan bahawa
perlindungan dari segi undang-undang tidak meningkatkan gaji golongan pekerja yang bergaji
rendah berbanding dengan pekerja lain. Sekalipun gaji minimum dapat meningkatkan kadar gaji
– bertentangan dengan hasil penemuan laporan – dalam situasi kurang guna tenaga penuh, ia
hanya akan menyebabkan peningkatan kadar pengangguran.
Benarkah gaji di sektor perladangan rendah?
Di bawah Perjanjian Gaji Penoreh Getah MAPA/NUPW, kenaikan gaji antara 9% dan 13% telah
diberikan dan komponen-komponen berikut dibayar kepada penoreh getah berdasarkan
prestasi mereka:
a) Komponen bulanan sebanyak RM95.00 sekiranya menoreh sekurang-kurangnya 26 tugas
sebulan
b) Komponen harian sebanyak RM13.50 satu tugas
c) Insentif sekiranya lateks melebihi 11 kg, kadar terkini adalah 73 sen per kg
d) Insentif getah sekerap basah sebanyak 20 sen per kg
e) bonus harian berdasarkan harga getah, kadar terkini RM17.60 sehari
f) Jaring keselamatan sebanyak RM350 sebulan tidak termasuk bonus harga dan insentif out
turn
Penoreh getah mampu memperoleh pendapatan serendah RM800 sebulan dan boleh
mencecah RM1,500 sebulan. Sistem gaji flexi ini adalah standing dengan sistem-sistem yang
digunakai di negara lain. Di samping itu, majikan juga menyediakan kemudahan-kemudahan
percuma seperti tempat tinggal, bekalan air dan elektrik, rawatan perubatan, asuhan kanakkanak dan tanah untuk diusahakan yang dianggarkan bernilai antara RM 350 dan RM450
sebulan. Sehubungan itu, tuduhan yang kononnya pekerja ini dibayar gaji rendah adalah tidak
berasas.
Penutup
Cadangan pelaksanaan gaji minimum kebangsaan di Malaysia adalah tidak produktif. Sistem
upah sedia ada berfungsi dengan baik dalam konteks pembangunan Negara kita. Badan-badan
yang mengawal selia pertikaian mengenai gaji telah menjalankan tugas dengan lancar dan
berkesan, manakala hubungan industri yang harmoni dapat dikekalkan sepanjang tahun.
Langkah ke hadapan yang lebih positif dalam perundingan gaji harus berpandukan kepada
mengaitkan upah dengan produktiviti. MEF sejak sekian lama menyokong sistem upah
berdasarkan produktiviti yang mengambil kira prestasi syarikat dan individu. Berdasarkan hujahhujah di atas, penetapan gaji minimum kebangsaan adalah tidak mempunyai justifikasi dan
tidak berasas.
Posted by Admin MOHR at 1:16 PM 28 comments
Labels: Gaji dan Upah
Pandangan MTUC Mengenai Gaji Minimum
Isu mengenai gaji minimum untuk pekerja di Malaysia bukanlah suatu perkara baru. MTUC
sejak bertahun-tahun telah menyuarakannya. Ianya agak rancak diperkatakan sejak beberapa
tahun kebelakangan ini. Tampaknya perjuangan untuk mendapatkan gaji minimum masih belum
membuahkan kejayaan. Tidak dapat dinafikan bahwa hal yang berkaitan dengan gaji atau
pendapatan ada kaitannya dengan perkara kemiskinan. Masih kedapatan di Malaysia bahwa
pekerja-pekerja menerima gaji pokok (basic wages) dibawah paras kemiskinan.
Kos hidup di Malaysia saban hari terus meningkat sedangkan pendapatan pekerja tidak dapat
mengimbangi perbelanjaan yang kena ditanggung. Kita tidak dapat membayangkan
bagaimanakah keadaan kehidupan pekerja nanti setelah subsidi beberapa barangan dan
perkhidmatan ditarik balik. Tanpa gaji atau pendapatan yang munasabah sudah tentulah
kehidupan mereka yang berpendapatan rendah akan menjadi bertambah teruk berbanding
dengan keadaan sebelum ini. Jelasnya, gaji mereka tetap sama namun kuasa beli yang ada
semakin merosot.
Para majikan pula, atas kehendak mereka sendiri, tidak akan menaikkan upah atau gaji
pekerja-pekerja yang bergelut untuk meneruskan kehidupan dalam keadaan yang ada sekarang
untuk menyara diri dan tanggungannya. Oleh hal yang demikian campur tangan pemerintah
dalam memperkenalkan undang-undang bagi gaji minimum adalah sangat diperlukan.Objektif
dan hasrat pemerintah Malaysia untuk mencapai Model Ekonomi Berpendapatan Tinggi agak
sukar dicapai tanpa adanya gaji minimum yang munasabah.
Banyak orang yang berkata, termasuk Menteri Sumber Manusia, bahwa pekerja tempatan tidak
mahu bekerja dengan syarikat-syarikat swasta akibat dari gaji yang ditawarkan adalah agak
rendah. Tambang untuk pergi ke tempat kerja dan balik telah meningkat. Begitu juga dengan
kos makan minum turut meningkat. Akibat dari sistem pengangkutan awam yang tidak effisien
maka ianya memaksa para pekerja menggunakan kenderaan mereka sendiri yang tentunya
akan meningkatkan kos hidup.
Dalam abad ini sepatutnya kita tidak lagi mendengar atau melihat berita bahwa pekerja masih
ditindas dan diainayai. Akan tetapi penindasan ke atas pekerja masih berlaku. Majikan masih
membayar gaji yang rendah yang tidak selaras dengan kos hidup terutama sekali bagi mereka
yang berada di Lembah Kelang. Hujah yang menyatakan bahwa: 'biarlah kuasa pasar (market
forces) menentukan paras gaji' tidak hanya membuatkan para pekerja terus ditindas malah
ianya akan memburukkan lagi taraf kehidupan mereka.
MTUC masih berpendirian bahwa pekerja di Malaysia hendaklah dibayar gaji pada paras
RM1,200 (termasuk Elaun Kos Hidup/COLA RM300) seperti mana yang telah dikemukakan
kepada pemerintah sebelum ini. Masanya sudah sampai bagi sebuah negara seperti Malaysia
yang bakal menjadi sebuah negara 'maju' tidak berapa lama lagi memperkenalkan undangundang gaji minimum. Banyak negara di dunia ini telahpun menetapkan gaji minimum sejak
lama dulu termasuk negara-negara jiran kita di rantau ini. Barang diingat bahwa gaji minimum
tidak bermakna bahwa gaji tersebut akan beku pada paras tersebut. Dalam kata mudah gaji
minimum bukanlah akan menjadi maksimum!
Posted by Admin MOHR at 10:18 AM 17 comments
Labels: Gaji dan Upah
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Gaji Minimum
Gaji minimum mengikut definisi International Labour Organization (ILO) ialah upah minimum
yang patut dibayar kepada pekerja untuk kerja atau perkhidmatan yang dilakukan dalam
tempoh tertentu, sama ada dikira berdasarkan masa atau output, yang tidak boleh dikurangkan
sama ada oleh individu atau menerusi perjanjian kolektif, dijamin oleh undang-undang dan
ditetapkan bertujuan untuk menampung keperluan minimum kehidupan pekerja dan
keluarganya berasaskan keadaan sosio-ekonomi sesebuah negara.
Gaji minimum kebangsaan adalah ditetapkan oleh Kerajaan atau pihak tripartite (wakil kerajaan,
wakil majikan dan wakil pekerja). Ia merupakan model yang paling banyak digunakan di seluruh
dunia dan terbahagi kepada 2 kategori iaitu satu kadar seragam gaji minimum kebangsaan
untuk seluruh negara, atau kadar gaji minimum berbeza mengikut sektor / wilayah.
Posted by Admin MOHR at 11:23 AM 85 comments
Labels: Gaji dan Upah
Isu Tuntutan Pelaksanaan Dasar [email protected] Minima dan Konsep dalam
Pembangunan
Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) berpendirian yang dasar upah
minima prlu dilaksanakan di malaysia. Hujah yang menyokong pendirian (MTUC).
Sebagai penggubal dasar pertimbangkan hujah ini dengan hujah dari pihak
majikan.
Isu tuntutan gaji minima merupakan isu sejagat yang diperjuangkan oleh
golongan pekerja di serata dunia. Definisi upah minimum adalah penghasilan upah
yang diperoleh dari upah pokok yang bersifat tetap dengan jumlah hari kerja normal. Isu
ini bukanlah perkara baru khususnya dalam senario perhubungan perusahaan di
Malaysia.
Sejak negara mencapai kemerdekaan para pekerja merupakan tenaga
penggerak kepada pelbagai kegiatan ekonomi dan telah memainkan peranan yang
penting kepada pembangunan negara. Sumbangan pekerja kepada perkembangan
ekonomi negara dan kemajuan pembangunan adalah tidak dinafikan dan kerajaan
sentiasa memberikan pengiktirafan kepada sumbangan mereka melalui dasar-dasar
kerajaan yang telah dan sedang dilaksanakan. Dalam konteks ini, isu gaji minimum
telah menarik perhatian banyak pihak di negara ini khususnya pihak Kongres
Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) yang telah menggesa pihak kerajaan agar
memperkenalkan skim gaji permulaan untuk para pekerja sektor swasta. Pendebatan
tentang gaji minimum adalah merupakan satu isu negara dan perkara ini harus dikaji
secara mendalam untuk kepentingan para pekerja, syarikat dan pertumbuhan ekonomi
Negara.
Dalam hal ini, tidak terdapat undang-undang upah minimum kebangsaan yang
dikenakan kepada sektor perkilangan mahupun perladangan di Malaysia. Upah asas
berbeza mengikut lokasi dan sektor perindustrian, manakala faedah tambahan, yang
boleh merangkumi bonus, pakaian seragam percuma, pengangkutan percuma atau di
beri subsidi, insentif prestasi dan faedah-faedah lain, berbeza dari syarikat ke syarikat
lain. Manakalag gaji dan faedah-faedah sampingan yang ditawarkan kepada pihak
pengurusan dan eksekutif juga berbeza mengikut industri dan dasar penggajian syarikat.
Kebanyakan syarikat memberi rawatan perubatan percuma, perlindungan kemalangan
diri dan insurans hayat, pengangkutan percuma atau diberi subsidi, bonus tahunan,
faedah persaraan dan caruman tertingkat kepada Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja.
Kongres
Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) mengenal pasti beberapa sektor
pekerjaan dalam sektor pembuatan dan perladangan yang tidak memenuhi peraturan
gaji minimum mengikut pasaran. Melalui pendirian MTUC, Pengerusi Kongres Kesatuan
Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) Pulau Pinang, Abdul Razak Abdul Hamid iaitu menyelesaikan
masalah gaji minimum RM900 dan elaun pekerja (cola) dinaikkan ke RM300. MTUC
telah mengadakan perbincangan untuk menaikan gaji masa kini yang dianggap di
bawah paras kemiskinan kerana ramai pekerja sektor perkilangan khususnya masih
menikmati gaji yang amat rendah berbanding pengumuman kerajaan bagi sektor awam
Negara. MTUC juga mendesak pihak kerajaan untuk melaksanakan undang-undang
upah minima supaya pekerja yang tertindas dijamin pendapatan bulanan yang lebih
terjamin dan munasabah. Namun, semua masalah ini diabaikan oleh pihak kerajaan.
Selain itu, Sistem Upah Berkait Produktiviti (SUBP) juga dipesoalkan kerana ada
sesetengah syarikat yang tidak melaksanakan sistem ini. Sistem ini merupakan satu
sistem perubahan upah yang berkait dengan kemahiran dan dihubungkan dengan
produktiviti output. Oleh itu, setiap peningkatan upah melalui kemahiran harus disertai
dengan peningkatan produktiviti output yang tinggi. Dengan ini, daya saing syarikat
dapat diperkukuhkan dan pekerja mendapat jaminan pekerjaan dan upah minimum yang
setimpal dengan kemahiran mereka. Namun tahap pelaksanaan Sistem ini dalam
syarikat-syarikat swasta di Malaysia tidak begitu menggalakkan.
Sebagai Pengubal Dasar yang juga merupakan pihak kerajan dan pemerintah,
adalah sukar bagi pengubal dasar untuk melaksanakan upah minimum kerana kadar
gaji sektor swasta di negara ini ditentukan mengikut kuasa pasaran. Penetapan ini
dibuat berdasarkan kepada permintaan dan penawaran. Ini bagi memastikan negara
sentiasa kompetitif dalam persaingan ekonomi diperingkat global. Melalui Institute for
Management Development (IMD) World Competitiveness Yearbook pada tahun 2007
melaporkan bahawa kedudukan Malaysia adalah di tempat ke-23 daripada 55 buah
negara dari aspek daya saing. Berdasarkan kepada laporan tersebut, kedudukan ini
perlu diperbaiki dan peningkatan kos tanpa peningkatan produktiviti perlu dielakkan.
Antara cara yang digunakan oleh kerajaan dalam penetapan gaji adalah melalui kuasa
pasaran, Perjanjian Kolektif dan Majlis Penetapan Gaji (MPG). Majlis Penetapan Gaji
ditubuhkan di bawah Akta Majlis Penetapan Gaji 1947 bagi golongan pekerja yang
mudah terjejas iaitu yang bekerja di sektor di mana tiada satu mekanisma yang
berkesan dalam menetapkan gaji dan syarat pekerjaan. Sehingga kini, kerajaan telah
menubuhkan 11 MPG yang akan menetapkan gaji minima dan syarat-syarat pekerjaan
bagi golongan pekerja dalam sektor-sektor yang ditentukan. Kerajaan akan sentiasa
mengkaji dan menentukan gaji minima mengikut sektor pekerjaan pembuatan dan
perladangan, sekiranya terdapat keperluan untuk penubuhan tersebut. Kerajaan
berpendapat bahawa penetapan gaji minima kebangsaan (National MinimumWage)
untuk semua sektor pekerjaan adalah kurang wajar pada masa ini kerana peningkatan
kos dalam menjalankan perniagaan di Malaysia akan menjejaskan daya saing negara
dalam menarik pelaburan asing ke Malaysia dan mengekalkan pelabur-pelabur
sedia ada. Selaras dengan hasrat agenda pembangunan negara, kerajaan sedang
mempromosikan sistem upah yang dikaitkan dengan produktiviti (Productivity Linked
Wages System- PLWS). Dasar ini bertujuan menjamin daya saing negara di samping
menyumbang kepada peningkatan kualiti hidup pekerja.
Dalam hal ini, isu berkenaan Upah Minima amatlah penting untuk difahami oleh
massyarakat terutamanya sumber tenaga manusia di Malaysia yang merupakan
pemangkin kepada pertumbuhan ekonomi Negara. Pada pendapat saya, Dasar Upah
Minima harus dilaksanakan di Malaysia dan juga di Negara-negara lain berdasarkan
keadaan ekonomi, politik , sosial, pasaran dunia, kuasa beli, infrastruktur, pendidikan,
dan sumber bahan mentah (input) di Malaysia pada masa kini mahupun Negara lain.
Jika dilihat dari segi pertumbuhan ekonomi, eksport Malaysia dijangka akan terus kukuh
dalam tempoh Rancangan Malaysia Kesembilan (RMK-9) berdasarkan unjuran
pertumbuhan ekonomi dunia yang dijangka berkembang pada kadar 4.3 peratus
setahun dalam tempoh tahun 2006-2010. Eksport barangan perkilangan dijangka
berkembang pada kadar purata 9.3 peratus setahun dalam tempoh RMK-9 dengan
perolehan eksport meningkat daripada RM429.9 bilion pada tahun 2005 kepada
RM670.8 bilion pada tahun 2010. Eksport utama barangan perkilangan termasuk
barangan elektrik dan elektronik, kimia dan keluaran kimia, keluaran petroleum,
makanan, tekstil, pakaian dan kasut, keluaran kayu, keluaran logam serta kelengkapan
pengangkutan.
Pertumbuhan
eksport
barangan
perkilangan
menggambarkan
pengembangan berterusan permintaan daripada pasaran tradisional, baru dan bukan
tradisional seperti China, India dan Eropah Timur.
Selain itu, eksport sektor
pertanian pula dijangka berkembang pada purata 8 peratus setahun hasil pertumbuhan
positif nilai eksport getah, minyak sawit, koko dan keluaran perhutanan serta keluaran
makanan.
Manakala itu, masalah lambakan pekerja asing juga menyebabkan kadar
kenaikan gaji pekerja berpendapatan rendah pada kadar perlahan yang sebahagian
besarnya disebabkan oleh lambakan pekerja asing di Malaysia. Berdasarkan Kumpulan
Pemerhati Makro, Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM), Prof. Madya Dr. Asan Ali Golam
Hassan, sejak akhir 1980-an terutamanya dalam tempoh 1990-1995 struktur ekonomi
Malaysia berubah kepada perindustrian dan telah tumbuh dengan pesat sekitar 8.4
peratus setahun. Ia lebih tinggi daripada sasaran Rangka Rancangan Jangka Panjang
Kedua (1991-2000) iaitu sebanyak 7 peratus setahun dan guna tenaga dalam sektor
perindustrian meningkat dengan mendadak daripada 542,817 orang pada tahun 1980
kepada 2.6 juta pada 2000. Dalam masa yang sama sektor pertanian menjadi semakin
kurang menarik kepada pekerja tempatan dan sebahagian besar mereka berpindah
kepada sektor perindustrian dan perkhidmatan. Guna tenaga meningkat sekitar 3.4
peratus manakala tenaga buruh tempatan hanya meningkat sebanyak 2.9 peratus
mengakibatkan berlaku kekurangan dalam penawaran buruh ketika itu. Untuk mengatasi
masalah tersebut, kerajaan membuka ruang kepada kemasukan pekerja asing. Pada
tahun 1995, pekerja asing meliputi 35 peratus daripada tenaga pekerja di Malaysia.
Dalam tempoh Rancangan Malaysia Ketujuh (1995-2000) penduduk Malaysia
meningkat pada kadar 2.3 peratus setahun manakala penduduk asing (bukan
warganegara) pula meningkat pada kadar 4.3 peratus setahun. Pada 2005, penduduk
asing meliputi 7.6 peratus daripada jumlah penduduk yang berada ketika umur bekerja
di Malaysia, tidak termasuk penduduk asing tanpa izin.
Kemasukan pekerja asing yang terdiri daripada pekerja tidak mahir terutamanya
dalam sektor pertanian dan perindustrian memperlahankan upah dalam sektor tersebut
daripada meningkat. Keadaan ini, menyebabkan upah pekerja tidak mahir dalam
kalangan penduduk tempatan meningkat pada kadar yang jauh lebih rendah daripada
kadar peningkatan pendapatan per kapita negara, dan seterusnya meluaskan jurang
perbezaan pendapatan dalam ekonomi. Kemasukan mereka secara beramai-ramai akan
merendahkan secara relatif upah pekerja tidak mahir sementara upah pekerja mahir dan
pulangan pemilik modal terus meningkat. Akibatnya, jurang perbezaan pendapatan
dalam masyarakat akan melebar dan pergantungan yang tinggi kepada pekerja asing
bukan sahaja menyebabkan faktor upah pekerja tidak mahir menjadi tegar (rigid) dan
peningkatan aliran keluar ringgit Malaysia malah lambakan pekerja asing juga akan
terus menambahkan bilangan isi rumah miskin di bandar. Misalnya, menurut Rancangan
Malaysia Ketujuh, 1996-2000, kira-kira 12 peratus (atau 11,300 isi rumah) daripada
jumlah isi rumah miskin di kawasan bandar di negara ini adalah terdiri daripada
warganegara asing. Malah, sebahagian yang agak besar daripada penempatan
setinggan di kawasan bandar, khususnya di Kuala Lumpur, telah menjadi tumpuan
penempatan penduduk asing.
Untuk mengurangkan kesan lambakan pekerja asing yang menyebabkan upah
pekerja tidak mahir menjadi tegar kerajaan mungkin boleh memikirkan peraturan
berkaitan dengan tingkat gaji minimum dan nisbah (ratio) pekerja asing. Tingkat gaji
minimum bagi pekerja tempatan seharusnya lebih tinggi dari tingkat gaji minimum
pekerja asing bagi pasaran pekerjaan untuk pekerja tidak mahir dan separa mahir. Ini
bagi membolehkan buruh tempatan mendapat kos sara hidup mencukupi dengan
peningkatan harga barangan minyak dan krisis makanan dunia yang berlaku pada masa
sekarang.
Konsep Produktiviti, Pindahan Teknologi, Pelaburan Langsung Asing dan
Pertumbuhan
dan
Pembangunan
Ekonomi.
1. Produktiviti
Produktiviti merupakan suatu isu yang semakin diberi perhatian, pelbagai faktor
digunakan bagi mendapatkan pengukuran tahap produktiviti yang sesuai digunakan di
bahagian pengeluaran. Konsep Produktuviti ialah nilai atau kuantiti output yang dapat
dihasilkan oleh satu unit input. Output adalah keluaran atau perkhidmatan yang
dihasilkan oleh sesebuah organisasi yang mengeluarkan Keluaran dan Perkhidmatan.
Manakala, input merupakan sumber-sumber yang digunakan
untuk menghasilkan
output. Input merangkumi Tenaga Manusia, Teknologi, Kelengkapan, Modal dan Sistem
Pengurusan. Terdapat banyak faktor yang mempengaruhi Produktiviti antaranya adalah
tenaga manusia, modal, input, teknologi, persekitaran pekerjaan, pengurusan, struktur
organisasi, system dan prosedur. Melalui tenaga manusia iaitu buruh untuk
meningkatkan produktiviti dengan melatih kakitangan dalam bidang-bidang berkaitan,
memotivasikan kakitangan supaya menghasilkan kerja dengan cemerlang dengan
pemberian bonus,kenaikan pangkat dan gaji, menggalakan penglibatan kakitangan
dalam penentuan matlamat organisasi dan dalam penyelesaian masalah produktiviti dan
mewujudkan komunikasi yang berkesan dalam jabatan atau pejabat.
Dengan adanya modal, syarikat dapat menyelenggara kelengkapan modal mengikut
jadual, menentukan kelengkapan modal berada dalam persekitaran operasi yang baik,
dan merancang penggunaan kelengkapan supaya semuanya dapat digunakan dengan
optimum. Dengan adanya input pula, syarikat boleh menjalankan pemeriksaan kualiti
pada bahan-bahan input yang diperolehi daripada pembekal, memberi pendidikan kualiti
kepada pembekal dan mengamalkan sistem inventori yang baik untuk mengelakkan
pemegangan
stok
yang
berlebihan
bagi
bahan-bahan.
Selain
itu,
teknologi
membolehkan produktiviti pengeluaran output secara cekap dan berkesan, pengeluaran
secara besar-besaran (mass production), berlaku pengkhususan kerja yang mana
membolehkan pekerja menjadi mahir dalam bidang tertentu dan pengeluaran semakin
meningkat.
2. Pindahan Teknologi
Pemindahan teknologi adalah selaras dengan dasar kerajaan supaya syarikatsyarikat di Malaysia mengenalpasti mana-mana teknologi yang sesuai dan terkini yang
boleh dipindahkan ke negara ini supaya dapat menyumbang kepada peningkatan
keupayaan industri, terutamanya dengan pembelian keupayaan sedia ada dalam
syarikat-syarikat tempatan. Pemindahan teknologi mesti ditambah dengan keupayaan
tenaga manusia dalam syarikat-syarikat tempatan dan inisiatif tempatan untuk
memahirkan dan mengoperasikan teknologi yang diperolehi itu serta menggalakkan
inovasi dalaman dalam syarikat. Pindahan teknologi tidak sepatutnya dianggap sebagai
penerima teknologi asing secara langsung dan terus bergantung kepada pihak luar
untuk meningkatkan keupayaan teknologi itu. Pihak syarikat dan kerajaan perlu ada
rancangan dan program komprehensif untuk memanfaatkan pindahan teknologi
tersebut. Dengan mengadakan latihan-latihan bersesuaian kepada sumber manusia
atau buruh tempatan serta menyediakan kemudahan-kemudahan untuk jurutera dan
para juruteknik tempatan untuk mempelajari apa skill yang diperlukan dari pindahan
teknologi tersebut. Lebih-lebih lagi pindahan teknologi bukan semata-semata bererti
pembelian loji, mesin dan jentera tetapi melibatkan kepakaran, pengetahuan serta
kemahiran-kemahiran yang berkaitan secara langsung dengan loji dan peralatan yang
dibeli itu. Pindahan teknologi mesti melibatkan program penerapan (absorption)
pengetahuan dan kemahiran yang secara terus akan meningkatkan keupayaan tenaga
manusia dalam syarikat-syarikat yang menerima pindahan teknologi.
3. Pelaburan Langsung Asing
Pelaburan langsung asing (PLA) memberi kesan ke atas pembangunan ekonomi
menjadi tumpuan syarikat luar negara untuk melabur ke pasaran malaysia. PLA
dipercayai mendatangkan kesan positif kepada negara penerima atau negara
tuanrumah dalam bentuk sumber modal, kemahiran pengurusan, teknologi dan
ekonomi.
Walau
bagaimanapun,
ada
juga
pendapat
yang
mengatakan
PLA
mendatangkan kesan yang tidak diingini kepada imbangan pembayaran. PLA
meningkatkan jumlah pekerjaan, menyediakan akses kepada pasaran eksport dan
aktiviti penyelidikan dan pembangunan. Walau bagaimanapun, ada kalanya ia
menyebabkan defisit dalam imbangan pembayaran negara. Keputusan yang diperolehi
menyatakan bahawa, jika negara ingin mengekalkan pertumbuhan ekonomi, lebih
banyak tumpuan perlu diberikan kepada sektor eksport, meningkatkan produktiviti buruh
dan menggerakkan tabungan domestik, berbanding dengan terlalu bergantung kepada
modal asing. Daripada keputusan yang diperolehi, diharap ia dapat dijadikan panduan
kepada pembuat-pembuat polisi bagi merancang dan memastikan PLA yang memasuki
Malaysia dapat dioptimakan faedahnya bagi kepentingan negara.
Sebagai contoh berdasarkan sumber Kementerian Perdagangan Industri dan
Antarabangsa, pada tahun 2007, jumlah pelaburan langsung asing yang diterima oleh
Malaysia dari segi projek perkilangan yang diluluskan adalah sebanyak US$9.7 bilion,
iaitu yang ketiga tertinggi di kalangan sepuluh negara ASEAN selepas Indonesia dengan
US$20 bilion dan Viet Nam sebanyak US$10.4 bilion. Pelaburan langsung asing utama
ke kedua-dua negara ini adalah tertumpu kepada industri petroleum dan kimia,
berbanding Malaysia yang menerima pelaburan langsung asing paling besar dalam
industri elektrik dan elektronik. Negara-negara destinasi utama pelaburan langsung
asing ASEAN yang lain seperti Singapura , Thailand dan Filipina masing-masing
mencatatkan US$9.5 bilion, US$9.0 bilion dan US$2.0 bilion. Sektor-sektor industri yang
digalakkan di Malaysia adalah sektor yang memberi nilai tambah tinggi, berteknologi
tinggi dan berintensifkan modal.
4. Pertumbuhan Ekonomi dan Pembangunan
Pertumbuhan dan pembangunan ekonomi adalah dua konsep yang tidak dapat
dipisahkan. Pembangunan bermatlamat menentukan usaha pembangunan yang
berterusan dan tidak memusnah dan memupuskan sumber asli. Manakala teori dan
model pertumbuhan yang dihasilkan dijadikan panduan dan penggubalan dasar negara.
Konsep pembangunan dikupas dalam teori pertumbuhan dan pembangunan dan cuba
menganalisa
secara
kritikal
dengan
melihttp://tomorrowiscertain.blogspot.com/2011/02/isu-tuntutan-pelaksanaan-dasargajiupah.htmlhat kesesuaiannya dalam konteks negara. Walaupun tidak semua teori
atau model dapat digunakan, perbincangan mengenai peranan faktor pengeluaran
termasuk buruh, tanah, modal, pengusaha, teknologi dan pengurusan boleh
menjelaskan sebab-sebab berlakunya ketiadaan pembangunan dalam sebuah negara.
Pada peringkat awal, pendapatan per kapita menjadi pengukur utama bagi
pembangunan.
Walau bagaimanapun, melalui perubahan masa, aspek pembangunan manusia,
kesihatan, pendidikan dan pembangunan lestari semakin ditekankan. Pembangunan
lestari (sustainable development) melihat kepada aspek kebajikan generasi akan datang
melalui kehendak masa kini. Ini, diandaikan bahawa konsep pembangunan dan
pertumbuhan tidak ditafsirkan dari perspektif ekonomi semata-mata, malah merangkumi
pelbagai disiplin seperti pendidikan, perindustrian dan perkhidmatan.
Thanks to Cik Zainab Wahidin
Posted by Sky Juice at 1:51 AM
http://tomorrowiscertain.blogspot.com/2011/02/isu-tuntutan-pelaksanaan-dasargajiupah.html
Sumber-sumber lain
http://www.mtuc.org.my/memobmcola18jun07.pdf
Perlaksanaan Gaji Minimum Di Malaysia: Suatu Pandangan
Oleh: Rafzan Ramli
Sejak kebelakangan ini, kita sering terdengar dan terbaca didalam media cetak dan
elektronik mengenai tuntutan agar seseorang pekerja menerima gaji minimum. Badanbadan yang berkaitan seperti Kongress Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC), Kongres
Kesatuan Pekerja-Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam (CUEPACS) dan beberapa
Pertubuhan Bukan Kerajaan (NGO) dengan lantang menyuarakan tuntutan agar dasar
gaji minimum dilaksanakan. Tuntutan ini dirasakan semakin releven apabila Perdana
Menteri merealisasikan tuntutan CUEPACS dengan mengeluarkan kenyataannya dalam
perhimpunan hari pekerja kakitangan awam di Putrajaya pada 21 May 2007 mengenai
kenaikan gaji pokok dan elaun bulanan kakitangan awam sebanyak 7.5% hingga 35%
yang akan berkuatkuasa pada 1 Julai 2007. Harus difahami bahawa pengumuman
kenaikan gaji dan elaun kakitangan awam yang dikeluarkan oleh Perdana Menteri ini
bukanlah satu gagasan atau dasar gaji minimum yang diperjuangkan oleh MTUC atau
badan-badan organisasi yang lain.
Mengikut takrifan polisi gaji minimum yang dikeluarkan oleh “International Labour
Organization” atau ILO, gaji minimum adalah satu amaun minimum yang ideal, yang
harus dibayar oleh majikan kepada pekerjanya bersesuaian dengan keperluan minimum
harian seseorang pekerja dan keluarganya. Kadar gaji minimum juga haruslah selari
dengan keadaan ekonomi dan sosial semasa sesebuah negara. Bayaran yang dibuat
adalah mengikut kadar kiraan bulanan, harian atau jam. Kira-kira lebih 90% negara di
seluruh dunia mengamalkan dasar gaji minimum yang bersesuaian dengan sistem
ekonomi negara masing-masing. Ada diantaranya telah menguatkuasakan dasar gaji
minimum seawal tahun 1900-an. Negara Australia umpamanya telah menguatkuasakan
dasar gaji minimum seawal 1904, manakala negara Amerika Syarikat pula telah
mempunyai dasar gaji minimum pada tahun 1938. Dasar gaji minimum ini bukan sahaja
diterimapakai di negara-negara maju, malahan ia turut dilaksanakan di negara-negara
dunia ketiga seperti Korea Selatan dan Sri Lanka.
Terdapat pelbagai kebaikan sekiranya dasar gaji minimum yang ideal dan manusiawi
dapat dikuatkuasakan. Jika diukur daripada takrifan polisi gaji minimum yang
dikeluarkan oleh ILO, ia sangat jelas menunjukkan bahawa dasar gaji minimum dapat
digunakan sebagai kunci bagi menangani masalah kemiskinan serta dapat
meningkatkan pendapatan bagi pekerja yang bergaji rendah. Ini secara tidak langsung
dapat meningkatkan kualiti hidup seseorang pekerja dan keluarganya.
Dasar ini bukan sahaja memberi kebaikan kepada pekerja semata-mata, malahan ia
juga memberi kesan positif kepada pembangunan ekonomi sesebuah negara. Ini adalah
kerana dasar gaji minimum boleh meningkatkan kuasa beli dan kadar belanjawan
pekerja. Sebagai contoh, pekerja yang berpendapatan rendah sebelum ini, dapat
memperuntukkan gajinya untuk berbelanja dan bercuti bersama keluarga. Selain itu,
kebergantungan pekerja terhadap kerajaan juga akan berkurangan bilamana dengan
pendapatan yang sesuai dengan keadaan semasa ekomoni serta sosial negara, maka
pekerja dapat mengatasi beban kewangan yang ditanggung serta tidak bergantung
kepada dasar kebajikan kerajaan semata-mata. Kesannya, pihak kerajaan mempunyai
peruntukan dana yang lebih untuk disalurkan kepada sektor yang lebih mendesak serta
memerlukan.
Dari perspektif hak asasi manusia pula, Perkara 23 Perisyitiharan Hak Asasi Manusia
Sejagat 1948 (UDHR) menyatakan, setiap orang tanpa sebarang pembezaan, adalah
berhak kepada penggajian yang sama bagi kerja yang sama. Semua orang juga berhak
kepada saraan yang adil dan berfaedah yang dapat memastikan diri dan keluarganya
mendapat suatu kehidupan yang wajar dan manusiawi. Justeru, dalam konteks pekerja
asing umpamanya, pelaksanaan gaji minimum dapat mengelakkan eksploitasi majikan
yang memberikan kadar upah yang amat rendah kepada pekerja asing seperti yang
berlaku pada masa ini. Secara tidak langsung, gaji yang adil dan saksama juga
menjamin seseorang pekerja itu dapat memenuhi tuntutan keperluan asasnya yang lain
seperti hak terhadap tempat kediaman yang wajar, hak untuk berehat dan berekreasi
serta hak kepada kemudahan kesihatan dan jaminan sekuriti sosial, ini semua
merupakan hak asasi setiap individu yang harus dijamin serta dilindungi oleh sesebuah
negara.
Sungguhpun dasar gaji minimum ini dikatakan banyak membawa kesan positif, terdapat
juga beberapa pihak yang membantah perlaksanaan dasar ini. Persekutuan Majikan
Malaysia (MEF) umpamanya, berpendirian bahawa penetapan gaji para pekerja di
sektor swasta berkait rapat dengan prestasi syarikat. Pastinya, bagi sesebuah syarikat
korporat, produktiviti serta keuntungan syarikat merupakan aspek utama yang
mempengaruhi kadar penetapan gaji kakitangan mereka. Sungguhpun demikian,
adakah wajar sekiranya atas dasar produktiviti dan prestasi, maka pengawal
keselamatan umpamanya diberi ganjaran gaji serendah RM400 disesetengah syarikat
swasta? Bagaimanakah 10.3 juta rakyat malaysia yang bekerja di sektor swasta
berupaya menampung kehidupan mereka sedangkan mereka ini tidak diberikan kadar
pendapatan yang manusiawi dan wajar? Bukankah ini akan hanya membunuh
produktiviti para pekerja serta menurunkan minat pekerja untuk menyertai sektor swasta
di negara ini. Sepertimana kenyataan Timbalan Menteri Kementerian Sumber Manusia,
Datuk Abdul Rahman Bakar baru-baru ini di dalam media, para majikan perlulah sensitif
kepada para pekerjanya terutama sekali dengan mereka yang terlibat dengan pekerjaan
yang berbahaya, kotor dan sukar.
Perjuangan bagi merealisasikan dasar gaji minimum di negara ini adalah satu
perjuangan yang besar dan panjang. Ia tidaklah hanya melibatkan pihak yang memberi
dan merima gaji semata-mata. Ia melibatkan pelbagai pihak.Pihak yang
bertanggungjawab seperti MTUC yang mewakili kelompok besar kelas pekerja haruslah
memainkan peranan yang aktif dalam memperjuangkan kempen-kempen gaji minimum.
Bagi memperjuangkan satu amaun gaji minimum yang ideal, MTUC sebagai contoh,
haruslah melihat dan mempertimbangkan dasar ini dari pelbagai sudut. Kajian yang
terperinci mestilah dilakukan sebelum mengadakan sebarang tuntutan. Hasil dari
perbincangan saya bersama wakil UNISON, Dave Watson, di Scotland beberapa bulan
yang lalu, beliau memberitahu bahawa perjuangan bagi merealisasikan tuntutan dasar
gaji minimum di United Kingdom ini telah mengambil masa selama lebih sepuluh tahun.
Ini termasuklah usaha meningkatkan kefahaman pimpinan kesatuan sekerja serta akar
umbi mengenai kepentingan serta cabaran-cabaran dalam melaksanakan dasar gaji
minimum. Kempen mengenai kepentingan dasar gaji minimum mestilah dilakukan
secara konsisten dan haruslah tersebar kesemua lapisan masyarakat. Beliau juga
menegaskan bahawa kajian-kajian yang terperinci haruslah dilakukan dengan
melibatkan pelbagai pihak. The Scottish Low Pay Unit (SLPU), sebuah organisasi
independen, merupakan antara penggerak utama usaha melobi pelaksanaan gaji
minimum di sana bilamana organisasi ini telah melahirkan kajian-kajian penting yang
mengaitkan isu gaji pekerja yang rendah dengan kadar kemiskinan di Scotland, lantas
mengukuhkan lagi gerakan memperjuangkan dasar gaji minimum di Scotland.
. . . Perundingan serta perbincangan yang serius bersama pakar-pakar ekonomi dan
golongan intelektual serta akademik haruslah dilakukan bagi memutuskan satu
anggaran siling pendapatan yang ideal bagi seseorang pekerja. Tidak hanya dengan
meletakkan suatu kadar secara sembrono, perbincangan ini mestilah turut meliputi
aspek-aspek yang lebih luas seperti kos sara hidup mengikut kedudukan demografi,
pecahan guna tenaga mengikut kemahiran, umur dan faktor-faktor lain yang relevan.Ini
adalah supaya sebarang syor mengenai dasar gaji minimum dapat diperkukuhkan agar
berupaya meyakinkan pihak kerajaan bahawa dasar ini sememangnya wajar dan
diperlukan di Malaysia. Perundingan dan perbincangan bersama pihak kerajaan
mestilah dilakukan dengan aktif dan berterusan.
Dasar gaji minimum tidak dapat lari dari aspek perundangan. Matlamat pelaksanaan
dasar gaji minimum ini mestilah direalisasikan melalui penguatkuasaan undang-undang
oleh kerajaan. Peruntukan mengenai pembayaran gaji yang terkandung di dalam Akta
Pekerja 1955 haruslah dikaji serta dipinda. Dasar gaji minimum ini pula mestilah digubal
menjadi satu akta Parlimen. Adalah diharapkan agar kesatuan sekerja dapat berbincang
bersama badan undang-undang seperti Majlis Peguam ke arah melahirkan dasar gaji
minimum yang berkesan dari sudut perundangan. Dalam hal ini, inisiatif yang diambil
oleh gerakan wanita merangka rang undang-undang alternatif bagi menangani
gangguan seksual sebagai salah satu strategi untuk melobi penggubalan undangundang gangguan seksual, bolehlah dicontohi oleh golongan pekerja dalam meneruskan
usaha menggesa kerajaan melaksanakan dasar gaji minimum.
Agenda dasar gaji minimum mestilah disebar secara aktif di segenap lapisan pekerja.
Setiap hasil perbincangan yang dipersetujui mestilah disebarluas melalui penulisan di
media. MTUC dan badan-badan lain harus bijak mendapatkan ruang di dalam media
cetak dan elektronik bagi menyebarkan agenda dasar gaji minimum ini. Kesatuan
sekerja yang bernaung di bawah MTUC pula haruslah menyebarkan kepada semua
pekerja mengenai dasar gaji minimum dengan menggunakan bahasa yang mudah
difahami. Bagi pekerja yang tidak mempunyai kesatuan pula, mereka ini tidak harus
dipinggirkan dan menjadi tugas MTUC untuk menyebarkannya kepada golongan ini. Ini
adalah bagi memastikan agar perjuangan menuntut dasar gaji minimum di Malaysia
tidak hanya dipelopori oleh pimpinan atasan kesatuan sekerja semata-mata bahkan
perjuangan ini haruslah menyeluruh dan melibatkan semua lapisan pekerja.
Kesimpulannya, adalah menjadi satu anugerah yang tidak ternilai untuk para pekerja di
negara ini jika dasar gaji minimum dapat dikuatkuasakan oleh kerajaan. Namun begitu,
bagi memastikan dasar ini tidak menjadi edisi “tangkap muat” terbaru kerajaan,
penguatkuasaan gaji minimum haruslah berteraskan dasar yang melindungi hak pekerja
dengan mekanisme penguatkuasaan yang adil dan telus. Pelaksanaan dasar gaji
minimum di Malaysia mampu mencatat satu sejarah penting dalam gerakan pekerja
seterusnya menjadi nadi penting kepada perjuangan pekerja yang seterusnya.
Rafzan Ramli adalah salah seorang bekas aktivis Mahasiswa yang masih lagi
dibicarakan dalam kes ISA 7.
http://aminiskandar.wordpress.com/2007/06/18/perlaksanaan-gaji-minimum-di-malaysiasuatu-pandangan/
Perspektif KPRU: Kewajaran Pelaksanaan Gaji Minimum
October 9, 2010 by kpru2010 Leave a Comment
Dewan Rakyat akan bersidang semula pada 11 Oktober 2010. Menjelang persidangan Parlimen
kali ini, kita sering terbaca paparan-paparan berita yang mengatakan bahawa kerajaan akan
mengemukakan dasar berhubung gaji minimum. Apabila ditinjau kembali sejarah, tuntutan gaji
minimum oleh golongan pekerja bukanlah sesuatu yang baru, cuma tindakan berlainan diambil
oleh pemerintah berdasarkan pertimbangan politik dan keperluan semasa.
Kali terakhir gesaan sebegitu dibuat secara besar-besaran adalah pada 18 Jun 2007. Ketika itu,
Kongress Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) menghantar satu memorandum kepada Perdana
Menteri Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi untuk menuntut gaji minimum RM900 dan Elaun Kos
Hidup RM300.
Sebelum itu, pada 21 September 2006, Jaringan Rakyat Bertindak (JERIT), sebuah pertubuhan
bukan kerajaan, juga menganjurkan satu piket yang melibatkan lebih 1,500 pekerja kilang dari
seluruh Malaysia. Mereka hadir ke Parlimen untuk menghantar lebih 50,000 kad tuntutan yang
menuntut Perdana Menteri supaya menggubal Akta Gaji Minimum serta undang-undang yang
menjamin hak pekerja. Kedua-dua desakan langsung tidak dihiraukan oleh kerajaan, malah
ramai penuntut gaji minimum tersebut diserbu dan direman oleh polis.
Anehnya, pendirian kerajaan berubah secara drastik pasca 8 Mac 2008. Daripada pengabaian
terhadap tuntutan gaji minimum,, kerajaan kini bertukar menjadi ”rakan seperjuangan” para
pekerja dan tidak bersabar-sabar memperkenalkan dasar gaji minimum. Pemuda UMNO/BN
juga sibuk merancang forum awam bersama MTUC bagi ”memperjuangkan” pelaksanaan gaji
minimum, seakan-akan terlupa pihak mana terlibat dengan penyekatan pertumbuhan gaji dan
penambahbaikan kebajikan pekerja selama empat dekad![1]
Perkembangan baru-baru ini jelas menunjukkan bahawa perubahan sikap pemerintah tidak
berlaku secara tiba-tiba. Perubahan ini merupakan produk PRU-12 dan hasil perjuangan
pelbagai pihak termasuk kesatuan sekerja, pertubuhan bukan kerajaan, pihak pembangkang
dan lain-lain. Tanpa peniupan angin perubahan yang kencang sehingga mengubah landskap
politik Malaysia, segala perkembangan sebegini mustahil berlaku.
Pasca 8 Mac, Kita bukan sahaja menyaksikan pembentangan Manisfesto Pakatan Rakyat yang
dicorakkan oleh wacana gaji minimum, tetapi juga pelaksanaan dasar berkaitan oleh Kerajaan
Selangor. Kini giliran Kerajaan Persekutuan untuk melaksanakan dasar tersebut.
Bagi sesetengah pihak yang masih mempunyai keraguan terhadap pelaksanaan gaji minimum,
mungkin analisis kepada persoalan berikut dapat menyakinkan anda: Adakah pelaksanaan gaji
minimum membawa faedah kepada pihak pekerja, perniagaan dan pertumbuhan ekonomi
negara? Mengapakah gaji minimum harus dilaksanakan di Malaysia?
Sebab utama pelaksanaan gaji minimum adalah pendapatan pekerja di Malaysia masih rendah
dan sudah lama berada pada tahap hampir beku (stagnation). Mengikut Laporan Model
Ekonomi Baru, sebanyak 40% isi rumah di Malaysia yang berpendapatan kurang daripada
RM1,500 sebulan.[2] Selain itu, kira-kira 442,000 orang atau 34% daripada 1.3 juta pekerja
tempatan memperoleh pendapatan bulanan di bawah Pendapatan Garis Kemiskinan (PGK)
iaitu RM720 sebulan.[3] Tambahan lagi, Malaysia telah mengalami stagnasi produktiviti di mana
mengikut kajian Bank Dunia, pertumbuhan gaji sebenar di Malaysia hanya mencatatkan
pertumbuhan 2.6% dari tahun 1994 hingga 2007. [4]
Malaysia juga mengalami cabaran dari segi jurang pendapatan yang semakin luas. Pendapatan
isi rumah 40% terendah hanya mencapai 1/7 daripada 20% isi rumah tertinggi, dan lebih kurang
4 juta warga Malaysia hidup di bawah purata tahap KNK iaitu AS$7,600 setiap tahun atau
RM2,200 setiap bulan.[5] Oleh yang demikian, pelaksanaan gaji minimum adalah kritikal untuk
mengurangkan jurang pendapatan golongan berlainan dalam strata masyarakat tanpa mengira
kaum, di samping mengimbangi gaji sebenar (real wage) yang tidak mencatatkan peningkatan
signifikan dalam tempoh 10 tahun yang lalu.
Dengan kata lain, penetapan gaji minimum bukan sahaja dapat dilihat sebagai salah satu
langkah memantapkan jaringan perlindungan sosial untuk golongan miskin (majoriti golongan
pekerja), malah juga dapat membantu meningkatkan produktiviti melalui pengenalan faktor
tolakan (push factor), iaitu dengan menetapkan gaji minimum dan memaksa majikan mencari
jalan penyelesaian untuk meningkatkan produktiviti mereka. Sesungguhnya, pelaksanaan gaji
minimum adalah selari dengan hasrat rakyat untuk mencapai negara berpendapatan tinggi.
Adakah gaji minimum akan menjejaskan pertumbuhan ekonomi negara? Pada tahun 2006,
International Labour Organisation (ILO) mengeluarkan satu kertas kerja mengenai dasar gaji
minimum.[6] Kertas kerja tersebut menyebut bahawa kebanyakan kajian tidak menunjukkan
impak negatif terhadap peluang pekerjaan selepas pengenalan gaji minimum (walaupun
sebahagian kecil menunjukkan begitu), malah terdapat kajian yang menunjukkan kesan
positif. [7]
Menyentuh dakwaan bahawa gaji minimum akan memberi impak negatif kepada Perusahaan
Kecil dan Sederhana (PKS), Fiscal Policy Institute di Amerika Syarikat telah menjalankan satu
kajian pada tahun 2006 untuk membandingkan kesan gaji minimum terhadap pertumbuhan
PKS dan juga tahap gaji antara negeri-negeri di Amerika Syarikat.[8] Hasil kajian sepanjang
tempoh tahun 1998 hingga 2003 menunjukkan prestasi negeri dengan pelaksanaan gaji
minimum yang lebih tinggi adalah lebih baik: [9]
•
•
•
Pertumbuhan bilangan perniagaan kecil (kurang daripada 50 pekerja) adalah lebih tinggi
(5.4% berbanding dengan 4.2% bagi negeri dengan gaji minimum lebih rendah);
Pertumbuhan peluang pekerjaan dalam sektor perniagaan kecil adalah lebih tinggi
(6.7% berbanding dengan 5.3% bagi negeri dengan gaji minimum lebih rendah);
Pertumbuhan jumlah gaji tahunan juga lebih tinggi (24.5% berbanding dengan 21.2%
bagi negeri dengan gaji minimum lebih rendah).
Terbukti daripada kajian tersebut bahawa selepas pengenalan gaji minimum, kebanyakan
majikan tidak memberhentikan pekerja, sebaliknya melambatkan kadar penambahan sumber
tenaga kerja, mengurangkan masa kerja, meningkatkan harga, dan juga mencari penyelesaian
lain supaya pekerja mereka menjadi lebih produktif. Tren sebegini juga dikenalpasti oleh Low
Pay Commission di British pada tahun 2005 selepas pengenalan gaji minimum sejak tahun
1999.[10]
Sebenarnya, pengenalan gaji minimum selain dapat membantu golongan pekerja yang miskin,
golongan pekerja wanita juga banyak mendapat manfaat daripadanya. Statistik menunjukkan
2/3 daripada penerima gaji minimum di British merupakan golongan wanita.
Memang benar bahawa kebanyakan negara maju telah memperkenalkan dasar gaji minimum.
Bersandarkan statistik perbandingan pada peringkat antarabangsa, daripada 197 buah negara,
hanya 28 buah negara yang tidak melaksanakan gaji minimum. Walau bagaimanapun, gaji
minimum tidak harus dihadkan sebagai satu-satu kriteria untuk meningkatkan taraf kehidupan
para pekerja. Sebagai contoh, walaupun kebanyakan kerajaan Scandinavia seperti Norway,
Denmark dan Finland tidak menetapkan gaji minimum, tetapi majoriti pekerja mereka dilindungi
oleh perjanjian ataupun rundingan kolektif antara majikan dengan pekerja dalam pelbagai
sektor.[11] [12] Rundingan kolektif tersebut adalah begitu komprehensif di Norway sehingga gaji
minimumnya adalah dua kali ganda lebih tinggi daripada British pada tahun 2008. [13]
Oleh yang demikian, selain daripada memberi tumpuan kepada pelaksanaan gaji minimum,
dasar lain juga harus dipertimbangkan dalam memperkukuh hak dan kebajikan pekerja supaya
taraf kehidupan pekerja dan mutu kerja dapat dipertingkatkan secara keseluruhannya. Sebagai
titik tolak baru pasca 8 Mac, cadangan berikut wajar diberikan pertimbangan oleh pemerintah
sebagai ”pakej gaji minimum”:
•
•
•
•
Hak pekerja untuk membentuk kesatuan sekerja mengikut kesesuaian dan pilihan
pekerja sendiri dan memastikan mereka diberi hak dan perlindungan selaras dengan
piawaian antarabangsa;
Penubuhan Dana Penamatan Kerja;
Pengenalan sistem pencen untuk setiap pekerja sektor swasta;
Pengenalan usia tamat tempoh perkhidmatan 60 tahun bagi kedua-dua sektor awam
dan swasta.
Salary and wages in Malaysia
By Ghani, Rohayu Abd.
Publication: Journal of Comparative International Management
Date: Saturday, December 1 2001
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This paper discusses the compensation practices in Malaysia against the backdrop of the legal
framework for wage and salary deterination. It also examines the Malaysian labour market
situation and trends in salary and wage administration together with the role of unions in
compensation determination.
INTRODUCTION
Malaysia is a country of more than 20 million located at the southernmost tip of mainland Asia.
Besides being a leading exporter of commodities such as natural rubber, tin, palm oil, timber,
petroleum, and natural gas, Malaysia is also one of the world's leading exporters of electronic
semiconductors, room air-conditioners, and audiovisual equipment. Prior to July 1997, Asia was
seen as a region exemplifying success in economic growth and development. Between 1991 to
1996, the Malaysian economy grew at an average rate of more than 8%. However, Malaysia
could not shield itself from being negatively impacted by the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis where
the nation suffered a 7.5% contraction in its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 1998.
In 2000, Malaysia had a workforce (defined as persons between 15-64 years old) of slightly
above 9 million. About 60% of the workforce were below 35 years of age. Union members
accounted for about 8.15% of the labour force. Unemployment was reported at 3% of the labor
force, and foreign workers accounted for one out of every seven jobs (Malaysia 1996-1998,
1996).
This scenario shapes the Malaysian labour market condition. Until 1997, the salary and wage
rate in the country had experienced a significant growth. This was a result of the rapid economic
growth and near perfect employment. This paper will discuss the salary and wage practice in
Malaysia. It will begin by describing the legal framework for wage and salary determination. It
1 will then describe the Malaysian labour market and trends in salary and wage administration in
the country. An examination of the role of unions is also included.
LEGAL PROVISIONS ON WAGE AND SALARY DETERMINATION
The legal framework for salary and wage payment in Malaysia is governed by the Employment
Act 1955. The Act defines wages as basic pay and all other cash payments made to employees
for their contract of service. The following payments, however, are not included as part of wages:
* The value of any house accommodation, the supply of any food, fuel, light or water, and
medical attendance.
* Contributions paid by employers on their own account to any fund or scheme established for
employees' benefit or welfare including pension fund, provident fund, superannuation scheme,
retrenchment scheme, termination scheme, layoff scheme, retirement scheme, and thrift
scheme.
* Traveling allowance or the value of any traveling concession.
* Any sum payable to employees to defray special expenses entailed on them by the nature of
their employment.
Under the Act, payment of wages must be made no later than the 7th day after the last day of a
wage period. A wage period must not exceed one month, and unless this period is specified in a
contract of service, it is deemed to be one month. That is, employees are paid at least once a
month. Employers, however, may pay wages at shorter intervals, say once a week or once
every two weeks.
The Act specifies that when an employer terminates an employee without notice, the wages
owing to the employee must be paid no later than the day the service is terminated. If it is the
employee who terminates the service without notice, payment must be made within 3 days from
the day of such termination. If termination is with notice by either the employer or employee,
wages must be paid by the end of the notice period.
The Employment Act does not govern every aspect of wages. For example, wage rates or levels
are not regulated by the Act but are determined through negotiations between an employer and
an employee or, in the case of unionized companies, between the representatives of the
company and the trade union. However, wage determination for some employees, such as hotel
2 and restaurant workers, are subject to the minimum wage requirements of the Wage Councils
Ordinance 1947.
Malaysia's Industrial Court and Industrial Arbitration Tribunal, in some of their judgments, have
indicated some factors that should be considered in determining wage rates and wage levels. In
one Industrial Court case, the Court determined that in fixing wage levels, employers should (a)
compare their wage levels with that of similar or related industries; (b) consider whether their
wage levels are fair, giving due consideration to the cost of living; and (c) take into account their
financial capacity to meet such wage levels. In another case, the Industrial Arbitration Tribunal
stated that due consideration should be given to the following factors in determining wage and
salary levels and increases: (a) the cost of living, (b) the wages and salaries paid by comparable
establishments in the same region, (c) any inconsistencies in the wage and salary structure of
the company itself, and (d) the financial capacity of the company to institute wage and salary
increases. In addition, the Tribunal opined that emp loyers should consider factors such as labor
productivity, prevailing wage rates in similar industries in the same region and the present
economic condition as well as the future prospects of the industry in determining wage levels
(Ayadurai, 1985).
EMPLOYMENT TREND IN MALAYSIA: 1990-1999
The rapid economic growth in Malaysia between the period 1990-1999 was accompanied by a
shift in labor force utilization in the country. One noticeable shift was the reduction in the
percentage of the work force employed in the agriculture sector. Data published by The Labor
Force Survey Report 1999 by the Department of Statistics shows that certain sectors
experienced significant changes in their share of total employment between 1990-1999 (refer to
Table 1).
The percentage of people employed in the agriculture, forestry, livestock and fishing industry
dropped from 26% of the total national employment in 1990 to 18.4% by 1999. The biggest
increase was experienced by the manufacturing sector, which saw its share of total employment
rise from 19.9% in 1990 to 22.5% in 1999. Major increases were also experienced in the
construction sector and the sectors classified as financial, insurance, real estate and business
services. The property boom during this period led to the increase in the percentage of people
employed in the construction sector. The growth in this sector needed to be supported by the
financial service sector which explains the increase in the finance, insurance, real estate and
business services sector.
3 THE MALAYSIAN LABOR MARKET.
The main labor markets in the country are located in the major industrial areas (refer to Table 2).
The Klang Valley is the biggest industrial area in the country and covers Kuala Lumpur, the
capital city, and the neighboring towns of Petaling Jaya, Shah Alam and the port town of Klang.
These three towns are located in the state of Selangor.
The Klang Valley Periphery covers areas in Selangor outside the Klang Valley, as well as the
neighboring states of Negri Sembilan and Melaka. The industrial areas in these states have
been developed mainly in the last 10-15 years. At the southern tip of peninsula Malaysia is the
JB industrial area. JB is the acronym for the town of Johore Baru which borders Singapore.
Many Malaysians in Johore Baru work in Singapore. As such, the labor market condition here is
affected by the conditions in Singapore.
In the northern part of the country are two major industrial areas. The first is Penang, which is
one of the oldest industrial areas in the country. This covers the Penangisland and the adjacent
area on the peninsula. The second industrial area is the Northern Plains, which covers the
states of Perak, Kedah and Perlis which borders Thailand. Like the Klang Valley Periphery, this
area was developed in the last 15 years. The last major labor market is the east coast of
Malaysia. This is a new area and is expected to be the next growth area. This area is also a
major oil producing area and is home to many petrochemical plants.
FACTORS AFFECTING SALARY LEVELS IN MALAYSIA
Several factors have been identified as contributing to the increase in pay offered to employees
in Malaysia. The tight labor market is a major factor causing the increase in pay among
occupations. In the JB area, the close proximity to Singapore and the increased mobility of
workers create a condition whereby companies in the area have to compete with Singaporean
companies for Malaysian workers.
Tight Labour Market
Malaysian employers compete for the same number of workers. As more foreign investments
flow in, more jobs are being created. For instance, in the production related sector alone, an
increase of 57.2% new jobs was reported in 1996 (Seventh Malaysia Plan, 1996). Foreign
investment under the Sixth Malaysia Plan (1990-1995) was RM80 billion, and under the current
Seventh Malaysia Plan (1995 - 2000) is expected to reach RM120 billion. Although the
4 government has encouraged the intensive use of modern technology in exchange for human
labor, the dependence on labour still continues.
An indication of the tight labour market is reflected in the consecutive reduction in the number of
job seekers. The number of active job seekers registered with the Manpower Department
dropped from 54,387 in 1990 to 23762 in 1997 (Siaran Perangkaan, 1998: 27). The number of
new job seekers also dropped from 11,939 to 7,524 in 1995 and increased slightly to 9,127 in
1997 (refer to Table 3).
Proximity to Singapore
Singapore offers comparatively higher salaries than its neighbors. The attractive salary offered
has attracted a considerable number of Malaysians to work there. Malaysian employers in the
JB area not only have to compete with their Malaysian counterparts for workers but also with
Singaporean employers.
Singapore currently employs about 200,000 Malaysians of whom 50,000 commute daily to the
island republic (New Straits Time, May 24, 1997). The figure represents about 13% of the total
work force in Singapore. Those who commute daily to work in Singapore are able to gain the
benefit of a higher pay in Singapore while at the same time enjoy the lower cost of living in
Malaysia.
Most Malaysians work in the manufacturing, construction and service industry. In August 1996,
the Singaporean government decided to exempt foreigners from contributing to the Central
Provident Fund (CPF). The contribution is a compulsory deduction from the employee's pay,
which is kept in a retirement fund. This decision will attract even more Malaysians to work in
Singapore. This is because the exemption will give Malaysian workers in Singapore a bigger
take home pay and make it more attractive to continue working there. However since the
economic slowdown affecting the region has also affected Singapore, it is unlikely that more
Malaysians will be able to seek employment in the republic. Given Singapore's emphasis on the
high-tech sector, new job creation will be mainly for professionals and engineers.
Influx of Foreign Labor
Until 1997, Malaysia was a major importer of foreign workers. It was reported that the number of
legal foreign workers was 750,000 in 1994 and the number of illegal workers was 500,000. In
1996, the number swelled to about 900,000 legal workers and one million illegal workers (Fernz,
5 1997). The economic slowdown has caused the country to review its policy of depending on
foreign workers. Malaysia has pursued a more active policy of repatriating illegal workers since
1998.
Although the general perception is that foreign workers cost less, the Federation of Malaysian
Manufacturers (FMM) disagrees (Yeow, 1997). Employers have to incur various costs such as
preparing paper work before getting the required approvals from the relevant authorities and
pay high levies to the government before they can hire foreign workers. The FMM explained that
reliance on foreign workers does not in any way reduce the cost to employers.
The number of skilled foreign professionals and expatriates has also increased due to the
increase in foreign investments and a shortage of Malaysians who can fill professional and
managerial positions. According to the Director of Employment Pass and Foreign Labor Division
of the Immigration Department, a total of 29,958 expatriate posts were approved in 1996 as
compared to 14,991 posts in 1995 (The New Straits Times, March 7, 1997).
As mentioned earlier, the view that the use of foreign workers is less costly and may moderate
salary level has limited truth. Among the blue collar laborers the cost of foreign workers is not
necessarily lower. As for professional and managerial positions, the use of expatriates is more
costly and provides a higher ceiling by which Malaysians compare their salary. Even then, this
impact is limited to only certain employment categories.
Increased Mobility of Malaysian Workers
Workers in urban areas such as the Klang Valley, Penang, and the JB area are paid better than
those working in the rural areas. As an example, a salary survey by the Malaysian Employers'
Federation in 1996 showed that the average monthly salary of top executives in Penang is
RM14,268 This is about the same as the average salary of top executives in JB (RM 15,050).
These amounts are far above the average salary of top executives in the East Coast who were
paid RM9,400 or the Northern Plain who were paid RM11,034.
The salary differences between various parts of the country attract people to areas offering a
higher rate. Malaysian workers have a tendency to move to those high-paying areas. According
to a Department of Statistics report, Selangor, which borders the Klang Valley industrial area
and where Klang Valley Periphery is located, recorded the highest number of internal migrants
(Report on Migration 1995, 1996). Internal migrants refer to locals migrating within the country.
The data also show a similar trend with most of the internal migration in Malaysia being from
6 other areas to the major industrial areas. This has the effect of raising the salary of workers in
the newer industrial areas. In the long term, one can expect salary differences between the
industrial areas in Malaysia to become smaller.
COMPARISON OF MANAGERIAL SALARY FOR SELECTED AREAS FOR 1994-1996.
A survey by the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) found that on average the salary given
to employees in managerial positions (i.e. from executives to the top managers) has increased
substantially during the period of 1994-1996 (Malaysian Employer Federation Compensation
and Salary Survey, 1996). (1)
This salary increase was experienced by employees at all managerial levels during this period
(refer to Table 4). A number of distinct trends can be noted from the data. It can be seen that
the largest salary increase was experienced by positions in the JB and Klang Valley Periphery
area. The Northern Plain area also saw large increases for top management positions. The
large increase in JB can be attributed to the competition from Singapore. Many Malaysians are
attracted by the higher pay in Singapore, which is only about a half an hour drive from JB. The
Klang Valley Periphery and Northern Plain consist mainly of relatively new industrial areas and
upward adjustments in the salaries are needed to attract experienced managers to move to
these areas. It can also be due to the need to reduce the attraction of opportunities elsewhere
for their senior and top managers.
Table 5 shows that there has been an increase in the percentage average salary increase for 3
of the 4 levels of managerial positions for the 1995-1996 period compared to 1994-1995.
In addition to the comparison between regions for the selected occupations, data available
indicate a shift in the breakdown of labour-related expenses in Malaysia. Data collected from
171 manufacturing and service firms in 1995 by Rozhan and Zakaria (1997) showed that the
average labour cost of Malaysian companies is made up of 74% salary and wages, 11%
incentives and 15% benefits. Another survey involving 108 manufacturing firms done at
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia in 1998 showed that 69% of the labour cost is spent on salary
and wages, 9.4% on benefits, 17.6% on incentives and 4.6% on other forms of compensation.
This seems to suggest a greater emphasis on the use of incentives in the compensation
practice of Malaysian firms. This may be due to the slower productivity increase experienced in
1996.
7 WAGE AND PRODUCTIVITY
Any attempt to understand the impact of the salary trend needs to take into account productivity
growth. The Eighth Malaysia Plan reported that salary and wage increased by an average of
6.8% per year for the period of 1995-2000. Labour productivity based on sales increased at an
average rate of 10.4% per year for the same period. This contributed to a decrease in per unit
labour cost by 3.2% on the average. Labour productivity growth based on GDP per worker for
the manufacturing sector during the period was 1.6% whereas for the agriculture sector it was a
modest 1.5% per year during the same period (The Eighth Malaysia Plan, 2001).
In 1999 productivity in the manufacturing sector grew at 9.1% (1998: -9.4%), employment at
4.0% (1998: -4.7%) and output at 13.5% (1998: -13.7%). Increased in export and local demands
are responsible for the growth. Meanwhile labour cost per employee grew at 6.5% and unit
labour cost decreased by 6.7%. This reflects the increased productivity of the manufacturing
sector. Table 6 shows the trends in the productivity growth, labour cost per employee and unit
labour cost in the manufacturing sector for the period of 1995-1999. The trend shows that
productivity on average lagged behind the growth of real labor cost per employee.
Output and productivity growth in the service sector were on the average 6.44% and 3.2%
respectively for the period 1995-1999. The service sector is a major contributor to employment
and provided 47.2% of the overall total employment in 1999 (1998: 47.3%). The agriculture
sector is facing a continuing shortage of manpower that causes the decreases in the growth rate
of 5.6% for the period of 1991-98. Despite the shortage, the labour productivity has grown at a
very encouraging rate of 4.18% on average since the last three decades (1961-1998).
The current wage system that is rigid and not based on productivity weakens firms' performance
in facing the fluctuation in demand for output. This variation in demand translated to the
fluctuation in employment. This was evident during the slow economic performance in the mid of
1980s and the economic crisis of 1997-1999 where employers laid off some of their workers in
order to reduce their cost in respond to slow demand in output. The National Economic
Recovery Plan of 1998 suggested the implementation of a wage system that is flexible and
productivity-based. Table 7 shows the variation in employment that can be related to the
fluctuation in GDP.
8 UNIONIZATION AND SALARY DETERMINATION
Any discussion about salary and wages will not be complete without examining the role of trade
unions. As described earlier, union members constitute 15% of the workforce in 1996 but the
number has decreased to only 8.15% in the year 2000 (Ministry of Human Resources, 2001). In
Malaysia, the National Labor Advisory Council (NLAC) is the highest forum on labor affairs. The
MEF represents the employers in this council. The Malaysian Trade Union Congress (MTUC)
represents the unions. MTUC has 166 affiliates representing about 600,000 workers.
Government employees are represented by the Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public
and Civil Service (CUEPACS).
The number of wage agreements in the private sector had increased from 188 agreements in
1991 to 226 agreements in 1996 (2). Table 7 shows the percentage average wage increment
agreed upon between employers and unions during this period. The trend shows an increase in
the percentage average increment agreed upon by both parties. This is reflective of the tight
labour market discussed earlier, which leave employers with little choice but to accommodate to
union demands.
To moderate this situation, in August 1996 the NLAC formulated guidelines on wage reform.
The purpose of the guideline is to provide principles for employers and unions in negotiating
wages and other benefits. The most important part of the wages reform is that wage increment
which commensurates with employee productivity and company performance.
Three specific issues are addressed in the guidelines. First, wages should consist of fixed and
variable components. Fixed payments are paid on a monthly basis or a more frequent period.
The variable components are yearly increment, bonus or other infrequent payments. Second,
changes in basic salary or fixed payment should consider relevant factors, such as cost of living,
and reflect the value of the job. Third, the variable components, such as wage increase, must
take into account a company's profitability and the performance of the individual employee or
group of workers or organization. The wage increase should be less than productivity growth.
Although these moves were intended to bring wage increase to a more reasonable level, it is
uncertain whether the guidelines had the intended effect. This is partly because the guidelines
provided nothing new and practically all of the principles set forth have been defined by either
legislation or court decisions. Another reason is that the Asian currency and economic crisis
9 essentially reduced the need to worry about unreasonable wage increases. Unions are now
more concerned about protecting what they have.
FUTURE TRENDS
July 1997 marked an important moment for many Asian countries. The Asian miracle was
unraveled and became more like a debacle. Beginning with Thailand, one Asian country after
another succumbed to the attack on their currency. Malaysia was no exception. The Malaysian
ringgit fell from an exchange rate of RM2.5 to the US dollar to around RM3.7. The glut in the
property market, which began as early as the end of 1996, caused a slowdown in the industry.
Financial institutions found themselves saddled with non-performing loans. This led to a
slowdown in the Malaysian economy. However, the present outlook of the economy, as
indicated by the positive economic development of the country as well as the region, has
allowed the Malaysian government to place a forecast of 5% growth in 2000 for its economy.
Some analysts may be less optimistic.
The Ministry of Human Resource reported that 83,865 employees were retrenched in 1998
(Labour Market Report, June 2001). This is a major increase compared with 18,863 retrenched
for 1997 (The Star, April 21, 1998). The hardest hit were companies in the manufacturing,
construction and property sector. However, the market has improved and the Ministry reported
that in the year 2000 retrenchment has lowered to 25,236 employees.
During the economic crisis and the period immediately following it, many of those still with jobs
found themselves taking a salary cut or freeze. The government implemented a cut in the
allowances given to civil servants. The merger of financial institutions that is still in progress, as
directed by the country's central bank, is expected to cause around 10,000 people to lose their
jobs. Export oriented manufacturing companies were the least affected by the economic
slowdown in 1997-1998. The weaker ringgit made their products more attractive. Even if this did
not translate into higher orders, the payment in US dollar that these companies received gave
them a bigger margin.
However, by early 2001 this began to change. The decline in the currencies of Malaysia's
neighbours began affecting Malaysia's export performance. With the ringgit pegged to the dollar,
Malaysian exports are now more expensive compared to her neighbours. Even though
Malaysian businessmen are quietly urging the government to devalue the ringgit, the prime
minister is stubbornly insisting on the current RM3.8:USD1.
10 In spite of the optimistic forecast of the Malaysian government, the quarterly data released by
Malaysia's central bank continues to see lower than expected economic performance.
Uncertainty is still a main concern. The slowing of the US economy in 2001 is already affecting
the Malaysian electronics industry which is very dependent on the US market. Malaysia's
Human Resource Minister reported that about 15,000 workers in Malaysia have lost their jobs
between November 2000 and April 2001 as the US economic slowdown starts biting. Eighty
percent of those laid off worked in the electronic and manufacturing sectors (AFP, 2001).
The currency control imposed by the Malaysian government in September 1998 has also
reduced its attractiveness to foreign investors who wanted to have free flow of capital. Even
when the government abolished restrictions on capital flow early this year to attract more funds
into the stock market, foreign fund managers simply packed their bags and left. The Kuala
Lumpur Stock Exchange composite index continues it yoyo movement at around half of its preJuly 1997 level (Shameen, 2001). Given the choice between Malaysia and her neighbors,
investors are finding the neighbors to be more attractive investment destinations. For those
seeking low costs, Thailand is the favourite destination. For those looking for a large pool of
educated work force needed for high-tech and high value-added activities, Singapore and even
the Philippines are seen to be more attractive. Malaysia is seen to be trapped in a no man's
land. It cannot compete on cost and neither can it offer the kind of workforce needed to support
a high-te ch industry. Malaysia's much vaunted Multimedia Superhighway Corridor which was
supposed to be an IT hub is deemed a failure (Malaysia's "Super Corridor" Fails, 2001). Even
the Malaysian Prime Minister admitted this (MSC's Contribution Still Low, 2001).
Equally important is the political turmoil that Malaysia is going through. Since the Prime Minister
expelled and then persecuted Anwar Ibrahim, his expected successor, in 1998 there has been a
steady erosion of support for the ruling coalition. While political change is itself natural and
should not be cause for concern, the oppressive response of the current ruling coalition is
causing worries about the possibility of turmoil. A survey of MNC executives conducted by
Executive Intelligence Review found that Malaysia is one of two Asian countries expected to
become a less attractive investment destination in the next 5 years. This uncertainty is also
reflected in Standard and Poor's decision to downgrade Malaysia's rating last April (S&P
Downgrade Malaysia, 2001). The opening of the Asian Free Trade Area (AFTA) will reduced
tariff and protected industries will find themselves having to compete with more efficient ones
11 from neighbouring countries. In the short-term there'll be considerable effort to cut cost a nd
salary rates in Malaysia may see a downward trend.
In the long-term, Malaysian companies will have to increase productivity and this will see an
increase in demand for professional and technical workers. An upward trend can be expected in
the salary of certain job categories. Given this scenario, there is considerable fear of what lies
ahead. The approach of the Malaysian government is to fund economic growth through debt.
While this may give a temporary boost, it does not address the issues relating to the decline in
investors' confidence. The variables impacting future salary trend in Malaysia will be complex.
This includes the local condition as well the expected changes resulting from the
implementation of AFTA. The spectre of uncertainty and increased unemployment is something
that is taken seriously by more Malaysians. The slowing down of the economy and
rationalization of certain protected industries, such as the automobile industry, as AFTA is
implemented is expected to lead to higher unemployment. We can expect considerable volatility
in the Malaysi an labor market in the next few years with salary trend behaving erratically.
ENDNOTES
(1.) Note that in Malaysia thc term executives refers to entry level managers. Some companies
have the position of senior executives as the next level, followed by the position of manager and
senior manager. Top management usually refers to those holding the title of general manager,
managing director, executive director and chief executive officer.
(2.) More recent data is not available at the time this paper was completed.
REFERENCES
Ayadurai, D. (1985). The Employer, the Employee and the Law in Malaysia. Singapore:
Butterworth.
Chen, M. Y (2001). Malaysia's 'Super Corridor' fails to attract financial attention. The Wall Street
Journal. 28 March.
Fernz, H. (1997). Malaysia a major importer of migrant workers in Asia. The New Straits Times,
March 24.
Reeves, A and Saludo, R. (1998). In recovery they trust. Asiaweek, April 10.
Rozhan Othman and Zakaria Ismail. (1997). Laporan Akhir Kajian Pengurusan Sumber Manusia
Strategik: Perbandingan Antara Industri.
12 Shameen, A. (2001). FOC: Half-measures won't save Malaysia. Asiaweek, May 4.
Yeow, J. (1997). FMM denies claim of cheap foreign labor. The New Straits Times, August 2.
MDC (1955). Employment Act, MDC, Kuala Lumpur, 1991.
Labor Force Survey Report 1995. Department of Statistics, Kuala Lumpur, 1996.
Business Monitor International (1996). Malaysia 1996-1998: Annual report on government,
economy, the business environment, capital markets and industry, with forecasts through end1998. Business Monitor International, June.
Malaysian Employer Federation Compensation and Salary Survey 1996. Malaysian Employer
Federation, Kuala Lumpur, 1997.
New Straits Times (1997). "Number of Expatriate Posts to Rise By 20 percent". New Straits
Times, March 7.
New Straits Times (1997). "Malaysia Makes Up 18 percent of Singapore Workforce". New
Straits Times, May 24.
New Straits Times (1998). "Productivity Growth Affected by Economic Woes", Business limes,
April 25.
National Productivity Corporation (1997). Productivity Report 1996. National Productivity
Corporation, Kuala Lumpur.
Department of Statistics (1996). Report on Migration 1995, Department of Statistics, Kuala
Lumpur.
Economic Planning Unit (1996). Seventh Malaysia Plan 1996-2000. Economic Planning Unit,
Kuala Lumpur.
Department of Statistics (1996). Siaran Perangkaan. Department of Statistics, Kuala Lumpur.
The Star Publication (1998). 90% of those laid-off finds job easily. The Star, April 21.
The Star Publication (1998). 200 in three factories opt for retrenchment. The Star, April 16.
The Star Publication (2001). MSC's contribution still low, admits Mahathir. Straits Times. March
31.
AFP (2001). Thousands of Malaysian workers laid off as US slowdown bites. AFP, April 6.
Malaysiakini.com (2001). S&P downgrades M'sia, cites 'moral hazard'. Malaysiakini.com. April 6.
13 Table 1. Percentage of Employment According to Sectors.
Sector
1990
1995
1999
26
20
18.4
Mining and quarrying
0.4
0.6
0.4
Manufacturing
19.9
23.3
22.5
Electricity, gas and water
0.7
0.6
0.6
Construction
6.3
8.0
8.2
Wholesale, retail, restaurant and hotel
18.2
17.9
18.8
Transport, storage and communication
4.5
4.7
4.8
Finance, insurance, real estate and business
3.9
4.8
5.3
19.9
20.3
21.1
Agriculture, forestry,
livestock and fishing
services
Community, social and personal services
Table 2. Areas in the Major Labor Markets.
Area
Cities and states
Klang Valley
Kuala Lumpur and its suburbs
Klang Valley Periphery
Parts of Selangor and the states of Negri Sembilan and Melaka
JB
State of Johore
East Coast
States of Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang
Northern Plain
States of Kedah, Perak and Perlis
Penang
Island of Penang and adjacent areas on the mainland.
14 Table 3. Registered Job Seekers With the Manpower Department.
Year
Active Job
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
54,387
50,199
42,344
31,617
26,445
25,546
21,688
23,762
NA
11,939
9,214
9,128
8,596
7,524
7,897
9,127
Seeker
New
Registrants
(NA: Not available)
Table 4. Percentage Salary Increase for Selected Positions According to Region
Between 1994- 1996
Top
Senior
Middle
Executives
Managers
Managers
Managers
Klang Valley
18.9%
15.5%
4.7%
12.4%
Klang Valley Periphery
50.3%
62.3%
26.9%
26.2%
JB
67.6%
42.8%
40.4%
10.1%
East Coast
6%
45.5%
2.2%
0.9%
Northern Plain
56%
6.7%
21%
3.5%
Penang
59%
57.5%
6.8%
18.7%
Source: Malaysian Employers Federation Compensation and Salary Survey 1996
Table 5. Overall Percentage Salary Increase For Selected Positions From 1994-1996
Top Managers
Senior Managers
Middle Managers
Executives
15 1994 to 1995
11%
15%
2.2%
5.3%
1995 to 1996
24.3%
12.2%
16.5%
12.4%
Source: Malaysian Employers Federation Compensation and Salary Survey 1996.
Table 6. Percentage growth in labor cost per employee, productivity, and labor
cost per unit of manufacturing sector
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999 (e)
Labor cost per employee
5.22
9.28
6.9
0.56
6.46
Productivity
2.2
9.7
2.6
-9.4
9.1
-1.61
2.7
1.6
3.74
-6.68
Unit Labor cost
(e: estimates)
Source: National Productivity Report, 1999
Table 7. Percentage Growth of GDP, Employment and Productivity
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999 (e)
GDP
9.1
9.6
8.5
7.8
-7.5
5.6
Employment
3.0
3.0
2.8
2.2
-4.9
1.67
Productivity
6.1
6.6
5.7
5.6
-1.8
3.86
(e: estimates)
Source: National Productivity Report, 1999
Table 8. Private Sector Wage Agreements.
Year
Wage Agreements
Percentage Average
Wage Increase
1991
188
7.9
1992
180
8.9
1993
161
8.3
1994
197
10.0
1995
257
11.7
16 1996
226
12.3
17 AKTA MAJLIS PENETAPAN GAJI 1947
Akta ini memperuntukan bagi penubuhan sabuah Majlis Penetapan Gaji dan memberi kuasa kepada
Majlis tersebut membuat perintah gaji minimum bagi kategori-kategori pekerja di sektor-sektor
pekerjaan tertentu yang difikirkan perlu untuk dilindungi. Pada masa sekarang terdapat perintah
peraturan gaji minimum seperti berikut:
1.
Perintah Peraturan Gaji (Pembantu-Pembantu Kedai) 1981
• Peraturan mengenai gaji minimum dan syarat-syarat perkhidmatan bagi pembantu kedai.
Kadar gaji minimum ditetapkan mengikut kawasan.
• Perintah ini terpakai di semua Majlis Daerah, Majlis Bandaran,Majlis Perbandaran dan
Dewan Bandaraya.
• Perniagaan yang tertakluk kepada perintah ini adalah seperti yang menjalankan jualan
runcit, pajak gadai, tukang gunting, kedai dobi, jurugaya dan apa-apa perniagaan yang
berdampingan dengan premis di mana jualan runcit dijalanakan
2.
Perintah Peraturan Gaji (Perhidangan Dan Hotel)
• Mengenai kadar upah dan syarat perkhidmatan bagi pekerja-pekerja perhidangan dan hotel.
Kadar yang ditetapkan adalah mengikut umur pekerja.
• Perintah ini terpakai di semua Majlis Perbandaran dan Dewan Bandaraya
• Meliputi perniagaan membekalkan makanan, minuman kepada orang ramai di premis
termasuk kedai kopi, kedai makan, hotel, rumah penginapan, restoran dan premis yang
digunakan untuk menjual minuman keras.
3.
Perintah Peraturan Gaji (Pekerja-Pekerja Wayang Gambar) 1981.
• Mengenai kadar gaji minimum dan syarat perkhidmatan bagi pekerja-pekerja wayang
gambar yang ditetapkan mengikut kategori-kategori tertentu.
• Perintah ini terpakai di semua tempat di Semenanjung Malaysia.
• Pekerja yang diliputi: penjual tiket, operator, mekanik, juruteknik dan penulis poster.
4.
Perintah Peraturan Gaji (Pemunggahan Dan Pengendalian Kargo) Pelabuhan Pulau Pinang.
• Mengenai kadar upah , syarat perkhidmatan dan waktu kerja bagi pekerja pemunggah dan
pengendali kargo di Pelabuhan Pulau Pinang.
• Perintah ini terpakai kepada pekerja-pekerja Pelabuhan Pulau Pinang sahaja.
• Kadar gaji ditetapkan mengikut syif.
BENGKEL GAJI MINIMUM KEBANGSAAN
KEMENTERIAN SUMBER MANUSIA
PUTRAJAYA 4 OGOS, 2010
IMPAK KENAIKAN KOS TERHADAP KUALITI
HIDUP PEKERJA
OLEH
G. RAJASEKARAN
SETIAUSAHA AGUNG
KONGRES KESATUAN SEKERJA MALAYSIA
Is it necessary to implement a minimum
wage?
•Current situation
-Market forces determine wage levels
-Wages remain as low as RM350
-Even in Industrial Estates in Selangor
workers are paid as low as RM450 to RM500
-In
Kulim,
Sg
Petani,
Muar
large
corporations keep wage levels at RM380 to
RM400
1
•Evergreen Heavy Industrial Corp MNC located in
Pasir Gudang, Johor
-General Worker
SRP
400
SPM/SPMV
450
ITI/IKM
540
-Technician
SRP
420
SPM/SPMV
475
ITI/IKM
535
•Dongwha MDF Sdn. Bhd. – Kedah
-Production Operation
550
-Quality Management Operators 550
2
Lack of a clear policy on recruitment of migrant
workers has screwed up the market forces shall
determine theory
-Initial policy that only employers who can
convince the labour department that they
genuinely require migrant workers and agree to
comply with terms and conditions stipulated
-Was changed 3 years ago to allow trafficking in
persons which further suppressed wage levels.
-Failure to legislate a minimum wage will
perpetuate our dependence on Migrant Labour
3
•Impact of subsidy on government
-In recent months government has been
lamenting on the cost impact of subsidies
-And taken the first step to ultimately
remove all subsidies
-Government has repeatedly stated that
the low income groups will not be
burdened.
-We don’t need handouts – because after
some years the same government will lash
out at people who depend on handouts for
their survival.
4
•Impact of rising cost on quality of life of
•workers
Impact of rising cost on quality of
-With or without subsidy rising costs
seriously effect quality of life – the impact
is worse on the low income group.
-We do not trust the CPI figures
-Malaysian wages have fallen behind partly
due to the gross divergence between the
suppressed Malaysia CPI and that of the
World
(Tan Seri Dr Fong Chan Onn)
5
•The reported CPI in Malaysia has been
increasing by about 3% per annum for the
last three decades, while the world CPI
has gone up 3,000 times over the same
period. So much so that housewives scoff
when they are told that prices of goods
and services are only increasing at 3% a
year.
(Tan Seri Dr Fong Chan Onn)
6
•Implementation of a minimum wage
- issues and challenges
-Since 1998 MTUC attempts were turned down citing MEF’s
objections
-Investors would be distracted
-Investors who are unwilling to comply with a decent minimum
wage need not be invited – They are probably labour intensive
industries who would be demanding for migrant workers.
-Individually most employers are not against a minimum wage
– so long the rate applied to all
-Malaysia has first class infrastructure but third world salaries
(Tan Sri G. Gnanalingam)
Executive Chairman – West Port
7
•How does the government plan to
achieve high income economy?
•Wage is the key element in
promoting decent work. Wages to
an employee, is a crucial factor for
sustaining quality of life
(MOHR Statement on definition of decent work)
8
•
Generally, high wages would improve
productivity and quality. Workers will
place high value on their job
-If
you
look
at
the
world
competitiveness report, countries with
high wages are consistently listed at the
top.
-Low wage
bottom.
countries
9
remain
at
the
10
•
What should be the Minimum Wage?
- In 1998 MTUC proposed a National Minimum
Wage of RM900
11
,The Suu:Wedi.IesdklyAugust'19,·199Si
"
w
'~
.fkf!ts"··~~lf~
"~"~~'":",.::;.::.,-,::::~/~~:,;"::;;;,:;;,~;~_:::;~:,:,:,,,
, " ':'_ .. ,,- E(),rneS'I~I.Fst<"
.... ,,:: -.
.".
"
','?
r-7-':-:~-~.
J~ __
.•
-
: "':;:-
.. --:
.i~-_.,·'-'L·-::""'--'~·'~'~;-::':·.--~:';·':>:-;";"'>; .":
",;say~', M ~h,t~,th'i r.'
.._--11III4
Kuala Lu.mpur, TUes': The' take h9Dll;!" R:j\i1l;200 per
governDlent is cornrnitted 'to' Dlohth.'"
", .
,
"
:.re;;rlising ", ·the ' ·target . 'of,'~, .. But~ c,Mana:thir .said ,.the
RM:l,'200, mm1mum,' inCoDle '-, attac::K$'pn :tJie~'i::inggit,1).ave
per month in the neafftitUre, "'caused it: to depreCiate, and
and wiU continue' t;o: put 'the, .reducethepur.chasing power
welfare,ofthe'workers,fiJ:"st,·, ", or the people.'
, . ,
," F'rfDle Minister' I;iatuk
, Efforts.' wU! be directed
Seri Dr Mahathfr JVIJ>haDlad firsttoward& the defence of
said today'thatt;he goverp.the 'ringgit' and.: then 'to., enn1en1:~s.,priorityhasal~?:y's
~urethat w~r~~rs earn::r¢al
been tlieweU"areof the worR1nC0n1e, -whe r,e:..t1).e ID.Qney
ers., ,- ,
, ,':. .
,: ':' :':,", " spent is worU!::tJ).,e.yalue;,,:, "
"Without' 'workers;' ,the'; . " ,A, group of 4Q"peopl.e;led
nation 'woUld" :riot"have\1;lyi::PerQdua Mlini::UacJ;tiring
achi:eved,su.ch:e,l::0~6Ink:~':SgpBhd stat:.f;;~Pdul;Latif
developm~p.t._(and),"WI':"mus't\,;"!,QJlunan, hag.'l;J.iM'herp}e.q,ged,
give' them ,due apprecIation," ',":":,on 'behalf ,oK>1H~Malay'Sian
he&aid-',at the Unity Ga:tber~-'workeis;therr COInmitment
ihgat ll'utra W6rld Trade;' tovvargs p:r:'~jl:lgtIie'¢puntry
entre_ .': ':, '
,"
RP04/07-08
Minimum wage system in selected places
7 March 2008
Prepared by
Jackie WU
Diana WONG
Research and Library Services Division
Legislative Council Secretariat
5th Floor, Citibank Tower, 3 Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong
Telephone : (852) 2869 9644
Facsimile : (852) 2509 9268
Website : http://www.legco.gov.hk
E-mail
: [email protected]
Contents
Page
Executive Summary
Chapter 1 – Introduction
Background
Selection of places studied
Scope of research
Research method
1
1
1
3
3
Chapter 2 – Australia
Development of the minimum wage system
WorkChoices reform
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Exemption
Minimum wage rate
Standard federal minimum wage
Special federal minimum wage
Real value of the minimum wage rate
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
4
4
4
6
6
6
7
7
9
9
9
9
9
9
10
10
10
11
12
Chapter 3 – France
Development of the minimum wage system
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Minimum wage rate
Young workers
Apprentices
Relief measures implemented
Real value of the minimum wage rate
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
13
13
13
14
14
14
15
15
15
15
16
16
16
17
17
17
17
17
Chapter 4 – Guangdong and Shenzhen
Development of the minimum wage system
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Minimum wage rate
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Enforcement and penalty
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
Guangdong
Shenzhen
19
19
19
19
19
20
20
22
23
23
23
23
23
24
25
25
26
26
26
27
Chapter 5 – Japan
Development of the minimum wage system
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Minimum wage rates
Prefectural minimum wages
Industrial minimum wages
Real value of the minimum wage rates
Average prefectural minimum wage relative to the average wage of
manufacturing workers
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rates
Authority for determining the minimum wage rates
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rates
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rates
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical study on the minimum wage system
28
28
28
28
28
29
29
29
29
29
29
30
30
30
30
31
31
Chapter 6 – South Korea
Development of the minimum wage system
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Minimum wage rate
Real value of the minimum wage rate
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical study on the minimum wage system
33
33
33
34
34
34
34
34
34
35
36
36
36
36
37
Chapter 7 – Taiwan
Development of the basic wage system
Coverage of the basic wage system
Basic wage rate
Relief measures implemented
Real value of the basic wage rate
Basic wage relative to the average wage of manufacturing workers
Characteristics of basic wage workers
Process of determining the basic wage rate
Authority for determining the basic wage rate
Criteria for determining the basic wage rate
Procedures for determining the basic wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical study on the basic wage system
38
38
38
38
39
39
39
40
40
40
41
41
42
42
42
42
Chapter 8 – The United Kingdom
Development of the minimum wage system
Low Pay Commission
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Disabled employees
Minimum wage rate
Accommodation Offset
Fair piece rate
Real value of the minimum wage rate
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Compliance statistics
Penal provisions
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
44
44
44
45
46
46
46
47
47
47
47
48
48
48
48
48
48
49
50
51
Chapter 9 – The United States
Development of the minimum wage system
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Enterprise coverage
Individual coverage
Exemption
Minimum wage rates
Federal minimum wage
State minimum wages
Youth minimum wage
Sub-minimum wages
Tipped employees
Real value of the federal minimum wage rate
Federal minimum wage relative to the average wage
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Process of determining the minimum wage rates
Authorities for determining the minimum wage rates
Criteria for determining the federal minimum wage rate
Procedures for determining the federal minimum wage rate
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
Penal provisions
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
53
53
54
54
54
54
55
55
55
55
56
57
57
57
58
58
58
58
59
59
59
59
60
Chapter 10 – Singapore
Background
National Wage Council
Historical background
Function
Non-mandatory guidelines
Study on minimum wage
61
61
61
61
61
62
62
Chapter 11 – Analysis
Introduction
Development of the minimum wage system
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Disabled employees
Minimum wage rate
Relief measures implemented
Real value of the minimum wage rate
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
Frequency of minimum wage adjustment
Enforcement and penalty
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
63
63
63
64
64
65
65
65
65
66
66
66
66
67
67
Appendix
73
References
74
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Research reports are compiled for Members and Committees of the Legislative Council. They are not legal or
other professional advice and shall not be relied on as such. Research reports are subject to copyright owned
by the Legislative Council Commission (the Commission). The Commission permits accurate reproduction of
the research reports for non-commercial use in a manner not adversely affecting the Legislative Council,
provided that acknowledgement is made stating the Research and Library Services Division of the Legislative
Council Secretariat as the source and one copy of the reproduction is sent to the Legislative Council Library.
Executive Summary
1.
In this study, Australia, France, Guangdong, Shenzhen, Japan, South Korea,
Taiwan, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US) all have a
minimum wage system in place for regulating pay at the lower end of the labour
market, providing a floor for wage levels across the economy. Singapore is the
only selected place studied which does not have such a system. Instead, it
adopts a flexible wage system in which a tripartite body comprising
representatives from the government, employer associations and labour unions
advises the government on wages policies and recommends non-binding wage
adjustments.
2.
Certain categories of workers are not covered under the minimum wage systems,
including domestic workers (South Korea, Guangdong and Shenzhen), trainees
(Australia, France, Japan and the UK), fishermen (Taiwan and the UK) and
professionals (the US).
3.
As regards disabled employees, they are not covered under the minimum wage
systems in France, Guangdong, Shenzhen and South Korea. In Australia,
Taiwan and the US, disabled employees are assessed for their productive
capacity and receive wages corresponding to a percentage of the minimum wage
rate. In the UK, if a disabled employee is categorized as a "worker", he or she
must be paid the minimum wage rate. In Japan, a disabled employee who can
perform the job duties is entitled to receive the minimum wage rate.
4.
While Australia, France, South Korea, Taiwan and the UK have only one single
minimum wage rate for adults, Japan, Guangdong and Shenzhen apply different
rates at the regional and local levels. The US has a federal minimum wage rate,
but most states also set their own rates, and an employee is entitled to the higher
of the two minimum wages.
5.
Among the places studied, the percentage of the minimum wage relative to the
average wage varies between 28% and 48%, whereas the hourly minimum wage
rate for adults ranges from HK$4.4 to HK$82.5. Reduced minimum wage
rates, ranging from 25% to 90% of the adult rates, are set for apprentices in
France and Taiwan, youths in the UK and the US, and workers on probation,
security guards and caretakers in South Korea.
6.
Among the places studied, only France and Taiwan have relief measures
implemented in view of the minimum wage system. In France, companies
which pay their employees up to 160% of the minimum wage are eligible for
exemption in social security contribution. In Taiwan, the government has
recently reduced financial burdens of small- and medium-sized companies
engaged in food and beverages, and retail businesses.
7.
Apart from Taiwan and the US, the real value of the minimum wage rate among
the selected places studied has been appreciating since 2001. In Taiwan, the
real value depreciated by 7.3% between 1997 and 2007. In the US, the real
value of the minimum wage rate depreciated by 28% from 1979 to 2006.
8.
While an independent statutory body is responsible for setting the minimum
wage rates in Australia, such responsibility rests upon the legislature in the UK
and the US. For all the other places studied, the government is responsible for
wage setting. Official advisory bodies are established in France, Japan, South
Korea, Taiwan and the UK to provide advice and recommendations to their
respective authorities. Although Singapore does not have a minimum wage
system, a tripartite body is responsible for recommending wage adjustments to
the government.
9.
In France, the percentage of minimum wage workers to the total labour force is
about 16.8%, while the corresponding ratio is about 13% in South Korea and
Taiwan and 5.1% in the UK. In Japan, the number of minimum wage workers
is comparatively small. In all the places studied, minimum wage workers are
mainly youth and female, and employed in sectors such as food and beverages,
retail, hospitality, toys and garments.
10. When determining the minimum wage rate, the authorities of the places studied
adopt similar criteria, which include the current economic performance, workers'
basic needs, average wage, labour productivity, inflation rate and employment
situation. In Guangdong and Shenzhen, the authorities also consider the
amount of social security benefits.
11. As regards the frequency of minimum wage adjustment, Australia, France,
Guangdong, Shenzhen, Japan, South Korea and the UK adjust their minimum
wage rate annually. In Taiwan and the US, such adjustment is not conducted on
a regular basis.
12. Australia is the only place studied where an independent statutory agency is
responsible for the enforcement of the minimum wage system. In all the other
selected places, such responsibility falls onto a government authority on labour
matters. The financial penalties for failing to pay the minimum wage rate and
making a false report to the enforcement agency vary in this research. In South
Korea and the US, conviction of failing to pay the minimum wage rate may
result in imprisonment.
13. In Guangdong and Shenzhen, empirical studies indicated that the minimum wage
system brought certain benefits to the society. Similarly, in France, studies
revealed that the minimum wage system had a positive effect on employment.
In Taiwan, the UK and the US, empirical studies showed that the minimum wage
system did not have any significant adverse effects on employment, inflation and
competitiveness of the economy. However, in Australia, a study suggested that
an increase in minimum wage could exacerbate unemployment, and an empirical
study in Japan illustrated that the minimum wage rate had certain negative
impact on female employment.
Minimum wage system in selected places
Chapter 1 – Introduction
1.1
Background
1.1.1
At the meeting of the Panel on Manpower on 17 May 2007, the Panel
requested the Research and Library Services Division (RLSD) to update the research
report entitled "Minimum Wage Systems" (RP08/98-99) published in May 1999 to
facilitate Members' discussion on the situation in Hong Kong.
1.2
Selection of places studied
1.2.1
As agreed by the Panel, RLSD examines the same 10 places studied in the
research report published in May 1999:
(a) Australia;
(b) France;
(c) Guangdong and Shenzhen;
(d) Japan;
(e) South Korea;
(f) Taiwan;
(g) the United Kingdom;
(h) the United States; and
(i)
Singapore.
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Minimum wage system in selected places
1.2.2
For a better understanding of the background to the development of the
minimum wage system in the selected places and Hong Kong, Table 1 presents some
selected statistics on their economy and labour market.
Table 1 – Selected 2006 economic and labour statistics in the selected places and
Hong Kong
Australia
France
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Population
(million)
Labour
force
(million)
20.7
10.2
(1)
61.4
25.3
93.0
Not
available
8.5
Not
available
66.6
Gross
Per capita
Domestic
Gross
Average
Product
Domestic
unemployment at current Product
rate
market
at current
(%)
prices
market
(US$
prices
billion)
(US$)
4.8
9.5
2.6
(urban areas
only)
2.3
(urban areas
only)
4.1
755.7
36,594
2,252.2
36,708
325.8
3,503
72.9
8,713
4,366.5
34,181
Japan
127.8
South
Korea
48.3
23.2(1)
3.5
884.1
18,306
Taiwan
22.8
10.5
3.9
360.5
15,857
The United
Kingdom
60.5
31.4
5.4
2,399.0
39,630
The United
States
299.7
152.8
4.6
13,194.7
44,024
Singapore
4.5
2.6
3.4
132.1
29,454
Hong Kong
6.9
3.6
4.8
189.8
27,679
Note: (1) These two International Monetary Fund figures are different from the corresponding
figures obtained from the respective government authorities.
Sources: International Monetary Fund (2007), Legislative Council Secretariat (2007), GDStats (2006)
and Shenzhen Statistics (2006).
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1.3
Scope of research
1.3.1
system:
The scope of research covers the following aspects of a minimum wage
(a) development of the minimum wage system;
(b) coverage of the minimum wage system;
(c) minimum wage rate;
(d) process of determining the minimum wage rate;
(i)
authorities for determining the minimum wage rate;
(ii) criteria for determining the minimum wage rate; and
(iii) procedures for determining the minimum wage rate;
(e) characteristics of minimum wage workers;
(f) enforcement and penalty; and
(g) empirical studies evaluating the impact of the minimum wage system.
1.4
Research method
1.4.1
This research adopts a desk research method, which involves literature
review, documentation analysis, Internet search and correspondence with the relevant
authorities.
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Chapter 2 – Australia
2.1
Development of the minimum wage system
2.1.1
Australia is a pioneer in establishing the minimum wage system.
Minimum wage has been in existence since the beginning of the 20th century.
During the ensuing 100 years, the minimum wage system has undergone numerous
changes: from a two-tiered wage replaced by one money amount to the passage of the
Workplace Relations Act 1996 (WR Act), which establishes a safety net of fair
minimum wages, and eventually leads to a uniform federal minimum wage rate across
all trades and industries.
WorkChoices reform
2.1.2
There were some shortcomings with the wage system in the last century.
Firstly, awards were used in Australia to prescribe minimum rates of pay and
conditions for employees. For different occupations (e.g. teachers, plumbers, bus
drivers and nurses), there were different awards rates. Despite the introduction of
the WR Act and the attempt to reduce the number of awards, awards remained
numerous and overly prescriptive, and the related documents were too detailed for
employers and workers to understand. Secondly, the then regulatory authority, the
Australian Industrial Relations Commission 1 , was involved in every collective
agreement, even where the parties were in complete agreement. This bureaucratic
process resulted in delays and confusion for both businesses and employees, in
contrast to what should have been a simple process.2
2.1.3
Starting from 2005, the government has introduced major changes to
industrial relations in Australia through the WorkChoices Act and Workplace
Relations Regulations 2006. In particular, there is a new standard of workplace
relations, known as the Australian Fair Pay and Conditions Standards (the Standard),
to provide improved protection for all workers. The Standard consists of five basic
entitlements:
(a) basic rates of pay and casual loading3;
(b) hours of work;
1
2
3
In 1988, the government established the Australian Industrial Relations Commission, a tribunal
which set minimum wages and settled labour disputes.
For further details on the historical development of the minimum wage system, please see
Legislative Council Secretariat (1999).
Casual loading refers to loading received by casual employees who are employed on an irregular
basis with no set roster or routine as to when they work. Casuals, unlike permanent employees,
are employed on an "as needs" basis, and generally receive a loading of at least 20% of the
ordinary rate of pay to compensate for lack of employment benefits such as security of
employment, sick leave, annual leave and payment for public holidays.
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(c) annual leave;
(d) personal/carer's and compassionate leave; and
(e) unpaid parental leave.
2.1.4
Particularly, the basic rates of pay is to be set by the Australian Fair Pay
Commission4 which was established under the WorkChoices Act in December 2005
as an independent statutory body responsible for setting and adjusting federal
minimum wages. The major functions of the Commission are to:
(a) adjust the standard federal minimum wage;
(b) determine and adjust minimum classification rates of pay in the
Australian Pay and Classification Scales (Pay Scales)5;
(c) determine and adjust special federal minimum wages for employees
with disabilities, junior employees and employees to whom training
arrangements apply;
(d) determine and adjust basic periodic rates of pay and basic piece rates
of pay payable to employees in general as well as employees of
particular classifications; and
(e) determine and adjust casual loadings.
2.1.5
The Fair Pay Commission consists of five Commissioners, including the
Chairman, who are from a range of backgrounds, such as economics, business, social
justice, workplace relations, academia and community service. All Commissioners
are appointed in a part-time capacity by the government.
4
5
The Commission takes over the wage setting and adjusting functions of the Australian Industrial
Relations Commission, which retains its role as a national tribunal dealing with employment
disputes.
A Pay Scale typically contains: (a) a guaranteed basic periodic rate of pay for each "guaranteed
hour" that an employee works or a piece rate of pay; (b) classification; and (c) coverage
provisions.
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2.2
Minimum wage system in selected places
Coverage of the minimum wage system
2.2.1
All workers subject to the WR Act are covered under the Standard which
guarantees the workers minimum wages set by the Pay Scales, the standard federal
minimum wage or the special federal minimum wage.6
Exemption
2.2.2
The following two groups of workers are not covered under the WR Act
and are excluded from the minimum wage system:
(a) workers subject to transitional arrangements, namely those who are
covered by pre-WorkChoices awards but not working in
constitutional corporations. The Australian Industrial Relations
Commission sets and adjusts minimum wages for these employees.
The transitional arrangements will operate for up to five years
(March 2011) for the employees to be covered by the new federal
system or by the relevant state system; and
(b) workers in non-constitutional corporations who are covered by state
awards in the States of New South Wales, Queensland, Western
Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.
2.3
Minimum wage rate
2.3.1
For workers covered under the Standard, most of them are covered by the
Pay Scales, which guarantee the workers' pay rate in their respective trade. If there
is no applicable Pay Scale, an employee will be entitled to the relevant federal
minimum wage, of which there are two types:
(a) the standard federal minimum wage; and
(b) the special federal minimum wage.
6
This category would include most employees in the state of Victoria and all employees whose
employer is: (a) a constitutional corporation; (b) the Commonwealth or a Commonwealth authority;
(c) a body corporate incorporated in an Australian Territory; or (d) a person or entity that carries on
an activity in a Territory.
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Standard federal minimum wage
2.3.2
wage if:
An employee will be entitled to at least the standard federal minimum
(a) there is no appropriate Pay Scale that applies to their employment;
and
(b) the employee is not an employee with a disability, not a junior
employee, nor an employee to whom a training arrangement applies.
2.3.3
Starting from 1 October 2007, the standard federal minimum wage has
increased by A$0.27 (HK$1.6)7 per hour, i.e. from A$13.47 (HK$78.8) to A$13.74
(HK$80.4) per hour.
Special federal minimum wage
2.3.4
The special federal minimum wage is a rate of pay for:
(a) employees with disabilities;
(b) junior employees; and
(c) employees to whom a training arrangement applies, if there is no
appropriate Pay Scale which otherwise applies to their employment.
Employees with disabilities
2.3.5
In the 2007 Minimum Wage Decision, the Fair Pay Commission
announced that from 1 October 2007 onwards, the arrangement for the special federal
minimum wage would be as follows:
(a) the special federal minimum wage is up from A$13.47 (HK$78.8) per
hour to A$13.74 (HK$80.4) per hour for disabled employees who are
able to earn full adult, junior or trainee wages as the effects of their
disability do not affect their productive capacity; and
7
The average exchange rate in 2006 was A$1 = HK$5.85.
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(b) for disabled employees who are unable to perform the range of duties
to the competence level required because of the effects of disability
on their productive capacity, and are not currently covered by a Pay
Scale, the minimum hourly rate payable to such an employee is the
percentage of the standard federal minimum wage (A$13.74
(HK$80.4) per hour from 1 October 2007 onwards) in proportion to
his or her assessed productive capacity. For instance, if the assessed
productive capacity of a disabled employee is 10%, he or she will
receive 10% of the standard federal minimum wage.
Junior employees
2.3.6
Junior rates are minimum rates of pay for people under the age of 21.
Where juniors are covered by adult rates in a Pay Scale, they would be eligible to
receive the full increase applied to those rates. For juniors covered by junior rates,
the Fair Pay Commission has decided that these rates would be increased in a similar
way (i.e. generally proportionately) to how they were increased prior to the
introduction of the WorkChoices Act. In the event that a Pay Scale does not provide
for junior rates of pay, a young worker must be paid at least the minimum adult rate
specified in that Pay Scale.
Trainees and apprentices
2.3.7
For trainees under the National Training Wage award, the Commission
determines the new rates for that Pay Scale depending on the skill level of the trainees.
For other trainees, the rates of pay would generally be increased in accordance with
the way they were increased in the past to maintain the relativities in the awards as
initially set. For example, before the introduction of the WorkChoices Act, the
first-year apprentice rate of a tradesman was specified at 40% of the full tradesman's
rate. Under the Commission's 2007 Decision, the apprentice rate is now 40% of the
new higher tradesperson's rate.
Wage-setting reviews for juniors and trainees
2.3.8
The Commission announced in the 2007 Decision that it would undertake
a specific review on the wage arrangements for junior employees and employees to
whom training arrangements apply as part of the planned rationalization of the Pay
Scales. It is currently seeking submissions from the public and interested
stakeholders to address the various issues related to the review.8
8
The submission period will end in February 2008.
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Real value of the minimum wage rate
2.3.9
Between 1997 and 2006, on only one occasion (in 2001) did the nominal
increase in the minimum wage constitute a reduction in real terms when compared to
the previous decision. All the nominal increases in the other years led to an increase
in real terms.
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
2.3.10
According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development (2007b), in 2005, the standard federal minimum wage represented 48%
of the average wage of manufacturing workers.
2.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
2.4.1
According to the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace
Relations, there were approximately 101 500 adult employees earning up to and
including the standard federal minimum wage as at May 2006.
2.4.2
Based on data from the Fair Pay Commission, most minimum wage
workers are likely to be young, without post-school qualifications, and engaging in
part-time casual jobs in the retail and hospitality sectors. Minimum wage workers
are disproportionately found in the lowest deciles of the distribution of household
disposable income.
2.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
2.5.1
Under the WR Act, the Australian Fair Pay Commission is in charge of
setting the minimum wage rates by conducting wage reviews, and exercising its
wage-setting powers as necessary depending on the outcomes of wage reviews.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
2.5.2
to:
In fulfilling its wage-setting function, the Commission must have regard
(a) maintaining the capacity for the unemployed and low-paid to obtain
and remain in employment;
(b) promoting employment and competitiveness across the economy;
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(c) providing a safety net for the low-paid; and
(d) providing minimum wages for employees with disabilities, junior
employees and employees to whom training arrangements apply, and
ensuring that those employees are competitive in the labour market.
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
2.5.3
The Commission conducts an annual minimum wage review and
announces its wage-setting decisions in July each year, with an implementation date
set in October of the same year. It determines the scope of particular wage reviews,
the manner in which wage reviews are to be conducted, and when wage-setting
decisions are to come into effect. For the purposes of performing its wage-setting
function, the Commission may, in any way it thinks appropriate:
(a) undertake or commission research;
(b) consult with any other person, body or organization; or
(c) monitor and evaluate the impact of its wage-setting decisions.
2.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
2.6.1
The Office of the Workplace Ombudsman (formerly known as the Office
of Workplace Services) is the independent Commonwealth agency responsible for
ensuring employers' compliance with federal workplace law. Its role is to
impartially assist both employers and employees and enforce their compliance with
workplace laws such as the WR Act and related regulations by appointing Workplace
Inspectors to investigate and enforce compliance. Specifically, the Office of the
Workplace Ombudsman provides the following services to employees and employers:
(a) assisting employees and employers to understand their rights and
obligations under federal workplace law;
(b) promoting and monitoring employers' compliance with federal
workplace law, such as providing assistance and advice, and
disseminating information to both employers and employees;
(c) investigating complaints and suspected contraventions of federal
workplace law;
(d) inquiring into any act or practice that may be contrary to federal
workplace law; and
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(e) instituting proceedings to enforce federal workplace law and
representing employees who are, or might become, a party to
proceedings under the WR Act.
2.6.2
Workplace Inspectors conduct compliance monitoring activities by
investigating formal complaints lodged by members of the public, conducting audits
of businesses, investigating alleged breaches of workplace law by interviewing
employers, employees and relevant third parties, analyzing employment records and
conducting site visits to business premises.
2.6.3
In 2006, 6 475 investigations resulted in alleged breaches of the WR Act,
comparing to 4 203 in 2005. The vast majority of the investigations are into claims
of underpayment of minimum wage rates.
Penal provisions
2.6.4
If a breach of workplace law is detected, the responsible Workplace
Inspector will issue to the related employer a breach notice which allows the
employer 14 days to rectify the breach. If the employer does not voluntarily rectify
the breach within the 14-day period, the Workplace Ombudsman may issue the
employer with a final breach notice, which provides the employer with seven more
days to rectify the breach.
2.6.5
If the employer still does not rectify the breach after the seven-day period,
the Workplace Inspector, the employee or employee organization concerned can
institute legal proceedings against the employer for underpayment of wages. The
court may order the employer to pay a specified amount as compensation for damage
suffered by the affected employee as a result of the contravention.
2.6.6
The maximum penalty that may be imposed for underpayment of wages is
60 penalty units for an individual, or 300 penalty units for a corporate. Under the
Crimes Act 1914, one penalty unit is currently equal to A$110 (HK$643).
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2.7
Minimum wage system in selected places
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
2.7.1
In its submission to the Fair Pay Commission's 2006 Minimum Wage
Review, the government presented a summary of results from international and
Australian studies which investigated the relationship between minimum wage
increases and employment. The overwhelming majority of these studies presented
by the government revealed that excessive minimum wage increases had a negative
impact on employment. For instance, a report of the Department of Employment
and Workplace Relations9 concluded that the restaurant and catering industry was
affected more than any other industries by increases in minimum wages. There were
suggestions that increases in minimum wages had caused job loss, erosion of
profitability and restaurant closures.
2.7.2
In addition, there were questions regarding whether low-paid workers and
casual workers (most of whom were engaged in low-paid jobs) might eventually be
offered better jobs. According to the Joint Labor Governments10 and the Australian
Council of Social Service11, the labour market could not guarantee that a person who
entered low-paid employment would progress to higher-paid employment over time,
nor that a person employed in a casual or part-time capacity would progress to more
secure or substantive employment. These organizations opined that if increases in
minimum wages led to the reduction of the overall availability of low-paid jobs or the
willingness of employers to offer jobs to people who had been out of work for some
time, the overall result would exacerbate unemployment in the country.
9
10
11
The Department of Employment and Workplace Relations is the former name of the current
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
The Joint Labor Governments comprise the labour governments of the States of Victoria, South
Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania, and the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern
Territory.
The Australian Council of Social Service is an independent non-party political voice within the
community services and welfare sector. It promotes socially and economically responsible public
policy and action by the governments, communities and businesses.
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Chapter 3 – France
3.1
Development of the minimum wage system
3.1.1
Prior to the introduction of a national minimum wage system in France,
wages had been regulated primarily through collective bargaining. In the mid-1940s,
most industries had collective agreements covering all employees, with minimum
wage rates that were legally binding.
3.1.2
The Minimum Wage Law was passed in 1950 to establish a national
minimum wage system in France to ensure that low-paid workers could enjoy a
certain standard of living. However, the system was complicated by the introduction
of a large number of minimum wage rates which varied by region and town. In
addition, the minimum wage rates were criticized by labour unions for not being
indexed to the inflation rate.
3.1.3
In view of the problems, the government attempted to reform the national
minimum wage system in the 1950s and subsequently in the 1960s. In 1952, the
government began to adjust the minimum wage rates with reference to changes in
price levels due to rising pressure from the labour unions. In 1968, the government
simplified the system by merging various minimum wage rates into one single
minimum wage rate. Nonetheless, there was increasing dissatisfaction with the
system because the minimum wage rate was largely confined to compensating for
price inflation, and the disparity between the general wage rate and the minimum
wage rate widened progressively.
3.1.4
In the 1970 reform, a new national minimum wage (Salaire Minimum
Interprofessional de Croissance) (SMIC) system was introduced, with the aim of
ensuring that low-paid workers would enjoy the benefits of economic growth. The
current minimum wage system in France is based on the 1970 framework.
3.2
Coverage of the minimum wage system
3.2.1
SMIC is applicable to employees aged 18 and above in almost all sectors
of the economy, including temporary and part-time workers. However, disabled
employees and prisoners are not covered under the minimum wage system.
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3.3
Minimum wage system in selected places
Minimum wage rate
3.3.1
Since July 2007, SMIC has been €8.44 (HK$82.5)12 an hour, up 2.1%
from the corresponding rate in 2006-2007. The rates for young workers and
apprentices are lower than SMIC.
Young workers
3.3.2
Employers pay a reduced rate at 80% of the minimum wage (or €6.75
(HK$66)) to young workers aged below 17, and 90% (or €7.60 (HK$74.3)) to those
aged between 17 and 18. However, young workers with six months or more
experience in their respective trade are entitled to receive the full rate.
Apprentices
3.3.3
Depending on their age and qualification, the applicable minimum wage
rates of apprentices are set at a percentage of SMIC or the conventional minimum
wage rate of the trade (whichever is higher).13
Table 2 – Minimum wage rates of apprentices
Year of
employment
Age
15 – 17 years old
18 – 20 years old
21 years old
and above
First year
25% of SMIC(1)
41% of SMIC(1)
53% of SMIC(1)
Second year
37% of SMIC(1)
49% of SMIC(1)
61% of SMIC(1)
Third year
53% of SMIC(1)
65% of SMIC(1)
78% of SMIC(1)
Note: (1) A percentage of SMIC or the conventional minimum wage rate of the trade, whichever is
higher.
Source: The Ministry for Labour, Labour Relations and Solidarity.
12
13
The average exchange rate in 2006 was €1 = HK$9.77.
As regards the impact of the introduction of a statutory 35-hour working week on the minimum
wage system, please refer to Appendix I.
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Relief measures implemented
3.3.4
Since 1993, the French government has adopted a succession of new
regulations, enabling companies to claim wage subsidies for minimum wage earners.
Companies which pay their employees up to 160% of SMIC are eligible for
exemption in employers' social security contributions. 14 According to a study
carried out by the Ministry for Labour, Labour Relations and Solidarity, if SMIC rises,
companies, which pay above 140% of SMIC to employees, are unlikely to follow suit
and increase the pay. On the other hand, some of these companies may become
eligible for wage subsidies.15 In this case, the rise of SMIC is advantageous to such
companies.
Real value of the minimum wage rate
3.3.5
Under the French Labour Code (Code du Travail), the percentage increase
of SMIC cannot be lower than the inflation rate in the same year. For instance,
between July 2002 and July 2005, the annual increase of SMIC was around 3% in real
terms (i.e. a 5% increase in nominal terms minus 2% inflation rate).
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
3.3.6
Under Article L. 141-5 of the Labour Code, the annual growth in the
purchasing power of SMIC cannot be less than half of the average growth in the
purchasing power of all earnings. The basis used for representing average earnings
is the index of the progression of the gross hourly wage for manual work (Salaire
Horaire de Base Ouvrier), calculated by the Ministry for Labour, Labour Relations
and Solidarity. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development (2007b), the value of minimum wage in 2005 was 47% of the average
earnings.
3.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
3.4.1
According to the information provided by the French Consulate in Hong
Kong, there were about 2.5 million minimum wage workers in July 2006, or 16.8% of
the labour force. The recent government policy of raising SMIC in real terms has
caused the number of minimum wage workers to increase continuously.
14
15
Schulten, T. et al. (2006), p.131.
Concialdi, P. (2006). For instance, if a company is paying 180% of SMIC to its employees, it is
not eligible for wage subsidy. If SMIC is subsequently increased by 20%, the company will then
be eligible for wage subsidy because its paying rate has become 150% of the new SMIC.
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3.4.2
According to an article published by Schulten, T. et al. (2006), in 2004,
44.4% of domestic work employees were minimum wage workers, compared to
31.8% in agriculture and 8.1% in public service. Among all minimum wage workers,
36.1% worked in the hotel and restaurant industry, 24.6% in personal services and
23.1% in retail trade.
3.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
3.5.1
The Council of Ministers (i.e. the cabinet) is the authority for determining
the minimum wage rate.
Advisory body
3.5.2
The National Collective Bargaining Commission (Commission Nationale
de la Négociation Collective) (NCBC) is an advisory body which provides
recommendations on the minimum wage rate for the Council of Ministers to consider.
NCBC is a tripartite body consisting of 40 members: four from the government,
18 from five national labour unions and 18 from employer associations. The
Minister for Labour, Labour Relations and Solidarity presides as the Chair of NCBC.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
3.5.3
Both the Council of Ministers and NCBC consider the following
four criteria when adjusting SMIC:
(a) the needs of workers and their families;
(b) the average wage of manual workers;
(c) inflation rate; and
(d) economic factors such as the economic situation, productivity and
employment levels.
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Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
3.5.4
SMIC is adjusted in a two-stage process. Firstly, SMIC changes in
accordance with the movement of the national price index. On 1 July each year, it is
adjusted to cover the movement of the national price index since the last adjustment.
During the interim period, when the national price index changes by 2% or more,
SMIC will be adjusted automatically.16 In this way, the real value of SMIC will not
fall.
3.5.5
Secondly, apart from the inflation-pegged adjustment to SMIC, NCBC
holds meetings in June each year to examine the relevant economic reports for
potential further adjustments to SMIC. After the examination and taking the
inflation adjustment into account, NCBC would recommend an adjusted SMIC to the
Council of Ministers for final approval. The Ministry for Labour, Labour Relations
and Solidarity is responsible for publishing the final figure.
3.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
3.6.1
Labour Inspectors of the Ministry for Labour, Labour Relations and
Solidarity are responsible for ensuring that employers comply with the law on
minimum wage. They handle complaints and carry out regular inspections.
Penal provisions
3.6.2
The standard penal provision of underpaying minimum wage workers is
€1,500 (HK$14,655).
3.7
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
3.7.1
The effects of SMIC on employment trends have always been hotly
debated in France, especially on the consequences of wage subsidies in the low-paid
sector. A number of studies on the minimum wage system have been conducted in
the past. Laroque and Salanié estimated that a 10% rise in SMIC would lead to the
loss of 290 000 jobs whilst, conversely, the wage subsides paid out in the 1990s
would create 500 000 jobs in the long term. Crépon and Desplatz also maintained
that 460 000 new jobs were created between 1994 and 1997 alone as a result of wage
subsides in the low-paid sector.17
16
17
RLSD has not been able to ascertain whether SMIC is adjusted downward in case of deflation.
Schulten, T. et al. (2006), p.137.
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3.7.2
As a result of the wage subsidies, the rise in SMIC was hardly a burden for
employers; instead such an increase directly affected the government's budget. The
trend over the past decade was that the state had borne a growing portion of the costs
of rises in the purchasing power of low-paid workers through subsidies for employers.
Small companies, in particular, benefited the most from the exemption in employers'
contribution.18 Sterdyniak concluded that the cut of social security contribution to
wage costs was 5.9% for companies with less than 10 employees; 4.0% for companies
with 50 – 99 employees; 3.1% for companies with 250 to 499 employees; and 1.3%
for companies with more than 500 employees respectively.19
3.7.3
As regards the relationship between minimum wage and productivity,
Cheron et al. reported that SMIC had an important function in the co-ordination of
companies' pay policies, in that it curbed the competitive downward pressure on
wages and favoured corporate strategies aiming at boosting productivity. Based on
the efficiency wage theory, there was a positive connection whereby higher pay
normally stimulated employees' motivation and productivity.
Conversely,
subsidizing wages at the lower end could have adverse effects on productivity growth,
since it reduced the pressure on companies to innovate. From a macro economic
perspective, Szpiro reported that SMIC had mainly positive effects on the
development of consumer demand and thus indirectly also on the development of
economic growth and employment.20
18
19
20
Concialdi, P. (2006).
Observatoire Français des Conjonctures Économiques (2007).
Schulten, T. et al. (2006), p.138.
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Chapter 4 – Guangdong and Shenzhen
4.1
Development of the minimum wage system
4.1.1
China started to implement the open door policies to restructure the
economy in 1978. During the course of economic reform, China witnessed the
coexistence of different forms of economic operations, including state-owned,
collective, individual and foreign-invested enterprises. In the early 1990s, the
number of wage disputes, in particular from the private sector, increased rapidly.
Against this background, in 1993, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security
promulgated the Minimum Wages Regulations to establish a minimum wage system.
The system, which has served as the basic minimum wage framework until today,
aims to guarantee the basic living standards of workers and their dependents and
protect workers' interests.
4.1.2
Under the Minimum Wages Regulations, the Ministry of Labour and
Social Security is responsible for the macro aspect of the system, while the rules for
implementing the system and related policies are formulated by the local government
of a province, an autonomous region or a municipality.
Guangdong
4.1.3
The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security implemented its
minimum wage system in September 1994.
Shenzhen
4.1.4
The Shenzhen Labour and Social Security Bureau implemented its
minimum wage system in November 1994.
4.2
Coverage of the minimum wage system
4.2.1
The coverage of the minimum wage system has expanded continuously
since its establishment. Since its introduction in 1994 up to 2003, the minimum
wage system covered full-time 21 employees of various types of establishments,
including commercial enterprises, government offices and social bodies, under the
Ministry of Labour and Social Security's requirement. At the time, minimum wage
rates were calculated on a monthly basis only.
21
The statutory working time is eight hours per day, 40 hours per week and 160 hours per month.
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4.2.2
In the early 2000s, part-time employment became popular in China
because of increased economic activities. In 2003, the Ministry of Labour and
Social Security conducted a review to evaluate whether the minimum monthly wage
standards laid down in the past could adequately protect workers. After analyzing
the findings of the study, in January 2004, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security
amended the Minimum Wages Regulations to expand the coverage of the minimum
wage system to part-time employees. Since then, minimum wage rates have been
available in two forms, i.e. monthly minimum wage rates for full-time workers and
hourly minimum wage rates for part-time workers.
4.2.3
According to the revised Regulations, by definition, a part-time employee
works for no more than five hours on average a day and not more than 30 hours in a
week and is paid on an hourly basis. If the working hours exceed this limit, the
employer must enter into a full-time employment contract with the worker and bear
all respective responsibilities, which include paying social security fee and
unemployment insurance.
4.2.4
Similar to other places in China, in both Guangdong and Shenzhen,
disabled workers and domestic workers are not covered by the minimum wage
system.
4.3
Minimum wage rate
4.3.1
Under the Minimum Wages Regulations, the Ministry of Labour and
Social Security is not required to determine any national monthly and hourly
minimum wage rates22. The provincial labour and social security authorities are
responsible for determining minimum wage rates for various administrative areas of
the municipality on the basis of their specific socio-economic conditions. Hence,
minimum wage rates vary from province to province, and even among different areas
within a single province, municipality or autonomous region.
Guangdong
4.3.2
There are five monthly and hourly minimum wage rates which are
applicable in Guangdong, depending on the extent of development of the locality.
The 2008-2009 monthly and hourly minimum wage rates, with effect from April 2008,
are about 13% higher than the corresponding figures in 2007-2008, and are presented
in Table 3.
22
Minimum wage payment should not include: (a) overtime payment; (b) special allowance for
middle shift and night shift; (c) hardship allowance for working in high or low temperatures,
mining pits, toxic and hazardous environments; and (d) meal, transport and housing allowances.
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Table 3 – The 2008-2009 monthly and hourly minimum wage rates in
Guangdong
Monthly
Hourly
Categories minimum wage minimum wage
rates
rates
Applicable areas
1
RMB860(1)
(HK$877)
RMB8.3
(HK$8.5)
Guangzhou.
2
RMB770
(HK785)
RMB7.4
(HK$7.6)
Zhuhai, Foshan, Dongguan and
Zhongshan.
3
RMB670
(HK$683)
RMB6.5
(HK$6.6)
Shantou, Huizhou and Jiangmen.
4
RMB580
(HK$592)
RMB5.6
(HK$5.7)
Shaoguan, Heyuan, Meizhou,
Shanwei, Yangjiang, Chaozhou,
Jieyang and Yunfu.
5
RMB530
(HK$541)
RMB5.1
(HK$5.2)
Selected counties in northern
Guangdong.
Note: (1) The average exchange rate in 2006 was RMB1 = HK$1.02.
Source: The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security.
4.3.3
According to the Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security, the
hourly minimum wage rate for part-time workers is about 54% higher than that for
full-time workers when the full-time workers' minimum monthly wage is converted
into an hourly rate23 mainly because of the following reasons:
(a) job security of part-time workers is relatively lower;
(b) part-time workers are not entitled to welfare benefits such as housing
provident fund; and
(c) part-time workers have to make contribution to their retirement fund
and medical insurance.
Real value of the monthly minimum wage rate
4.3.4
23
The real value of the minimum wage rates has been surging since 2000.
For example, in Guangzhou, a minimum wage worker works 160 hours per month and receives a
monthly salary of RMB860 (HK$877). The hourly minimum wage rate should be RMB5.4
(HK$5.5), which is RMB860 (HK$877) divided by 160 hours. This example shows that the
actual hourly minimum wage rate of RMB8.3 (HK$8.5) for part-time workers is about 54% higher
than the calculated hourly rate for full-time workers.
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Monthly minimum wage relative to the average wage
4.3.5
The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security states that the
proper range for the minimum wage should be about 40% – 60% of the average wage.
However, the 2007 minimum wage rates applicable in Guangdong were set at about
30% of the average wage.
Shenzhen
4.3.6
There are two monthly and hourly minimum wage rates in Shenzhen,
applicable to different localities depending on the extent of their development.24 The
2007-2008 monthly and hourly minimum wage rates, which are about 6% higher than
the corresponding figures in 2006-2007, are presented in Table 4.
Table 4 – The 2007-2008 monthly and hourly minimum wage rates in Shenzhen
Monthly
Hourly
Categories minimum wage minimum wage
rates
rates
Applicable areas
1
RMB850
(HK$867)
RMB4.9
(HK$5.0)
Shenzhen Special Economic
Zone.
2
RMB750
(HK$765)
RMB4.3
(HK$4.4)
Baoan and Longhua.
Source: The Shenzhen Labour and Social Security Bureau.
4.3.7
Unlike the practice in Guangdong, the Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and
Social Security has not increased the hourly minimum wage rate for part-time workers.
Instead, the actual hourly rate for part-time workers is 8% lower than the calculated
hourly rate for full-time workers.25
Real value of the monthly minimum wage rate
4.3.8
24
25
The real value of the minimum wage rates has been surging since 2000.
Shenzhen consists of three regions: Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, Baoan and Longhua.
For example, in the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, a minimum wage worker works 160 hours
per month and receives a monthly salary of RMB850 (HK$867). The hourly minimum wage rate
should be RMB5.3 (HK$5.4), which is RMB850 (HK$867) divided by 160 hours. This example
shows that the actual hourly minimum wage rate of RMB4.9 (HK$5.0) for part-time workers is 8%
lower than the calculated hourly rate for full-time workers.
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Monthly minimum wage relative to the average wage
4.3.9
The Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social Security also states that the
proper range for the minimum wage should be about 40% – 60% of the average wage.
However, as in the case of Guangdong, the 2007 minimum wage rates applicable in
Shenzhen were set at about 30% of the average wage.
4.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
Guangdong
4.4.1
The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security estimates that
Guangdong had some 23 million rural migrant workers receiving the minimum wage
in 2007. Most of them were young female workers who worked in labour-intensive
industries such as toys, garments, plastics and electrical appliances.
Shenzhen
4.4.2
In 2007, there were more than 4.3 million minimum wage workers in
Shenzhen, with roughly one million in the special economic zone and three millions
in Baoan and Longhua. Most of them were young female workers who came from
inland provinces. They worked in labour-intensive industries such as toys, garments,
plastics and electrical appliances.
4.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Guangdong
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.1
The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security is responsible for
determining the minimum wage rate.
Advisory bodies
4.5.1.1
While there is no single advisory body on minimum wage issues in
Guangdong, the Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security has to consult
local trade unions, enterprise unions and entrepreneur associations when determining
the minimum wage rate.
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Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.2
When determining the minimum wage rate, the Guangdong Bureau of
Labour and Social Security considers the following criteria:
(a) minimum living standards of employees and their dependants;
(b) average wage of workers;
(c) current economic situation;
(d) labour productivity;
(e) local employment situation;
(f) amount of social security benefits; and
(g) differences in the level of economic development within the region.
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.3
After consulting the local trade unions, enterprise unions and entrepreneur
associations, the Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security may adjust the
minimum wage rate. The Ministry of Labour and Social Security will be advised of
the revised minimum wage rate, if any, for record purpose.
Shenzhen
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.4
The Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social Security is responsible for
determining the minimum wage.
Advisory bodies
4.5.4.1
There is no single advisory body on minimum wage issues in Shenzhen.
Same as the practice in Guangdong, the Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social
Security determines the minimum wage rate, after consulting the local trade unions,
enterprise unions and entrepreneur associations.
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Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.5
When determining the minimum wage rate, the Shenzhen Bureau of
Labour and Social Security considers the same criteria as stated in paragraph 4.5.2
above.
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
4.5.6
The Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social Security follows the same
procedures for determining the minimum wage rate as stated in paragraph 4.5.3
above.
4.6
Enforcement and penalty
Guangdong
Enforcement
4.6.1
The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security is responsible for
enforcing the Minimum Wages Regulations. It may require workers and employers
to report matters relating to wage disputes, particularly minimum wage issues. The
Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security also employs labour inspectors to
enforce the minimum wage law. In order to exercise the authority, labour inspectors
may enter workplaces, demand presentation of accounting books and documents,
inspect work articles and question workplace compliance.
Penal provisions
4.6.2
Any person who fails to pay the minimum wage rate to eligible workers is
punishable by a fine, ranging from RMB5,000 (HK$5,100) to RMB50,000
(HK$51,000).
4.6.3
Where the fine remains unpaid after a person has received the demand for
payment by the Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security, the case may be
referred to the People's Court for compulsory execution.
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Shenzhen
Enforcement
4.6.4
The Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social Security is responsible for
enforcing the Minimum Wages Regulations in Shenzhen. It implements same
enforcement measures as stated in paragraph 4.6.1 above.
Penal provisions
4.6.5
The penal provisions imposed in Shenzhen are the same as those in
Guangdong.
4.7
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
Guangdong
4.7.1
In 2006, Professor Han Xiu Zhou26 published a research report entitled
Wages and social security – An investigation into Guangdong minimum wages and
research on the statistical estimate model. In conducting the research, Professor Han
Xiu Zhou employed more than 100 university graduates to collect information from
over 2 500 interviewees27, who were minimum wage workers, employees, employers,
government officials, representatives of trade unions/enterprise unions/entrepreneur
associations, professors, social policy researchers and social workers. The major
findings of his study are summarized as follows:
(a) The minimum wage system served the following purposes:
(i)
playing the role of a safety net by offering minimum acceptable
protection for workers and ensuring a minimum standard of
living for them and their families;
(ii) narrowing the income gap between the rich and the poor to
reduce social tensions and promote harmonious socio-economic
development; and
(iii) compelling employers to restructure their businesses to enhance
technical efficiency, raise labour productivity and promote the
development of high-value added products.
26
27
He is a professor of the Department of Economics and Statistics of the Jinan University.
The survey was conducted between January and March 2005.
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(b) The minimum wage system did not have any significant impact on
the competitiveness of the enterprises studied and their export
performance.
(c) The minimum wage rates were considered low, compared to the
average wage. Nonetheless, if the Guangdong Bureau of Labour
and Social Security considered raising the minimum wages rates,
some enterprise owners were worried that the rise in the minimum
wage rates might drive up operating costs, forcing enterprises with
low profit margins to close down their businesses or relocate to areas
outside Guangdong.
(d) The Minimum Wages Regulations had not been effectively enforced.
In Guangdong, the problem of underpaying minimum wage workers
was serious. The Guangdong Bureau of Labour and Social Security
was encouraged to step up the enforcement, employing more labour
inspectors to inspect records of wage payments of employers, deal
with illegal acts and educate workers about their labour rights.
Shenzhen
4.7.2
The Shenzhen Bureau of Labour and Social Security has conducted
internal evaluations on the minimum wage system. The 2006 findings showed that a
minimum wage system could bring much benefit to the society, which included:
(a) guaranteeing workers to have an acceptable minimum standard of
living;
(b) preventing employers from exploiting low-skilled workers;
(c) increasing consumer purchasing power, through raising the incomes
of low-wage workers;
(d) reducing the tensions between employers and employees; and
(e) narrowing the income gap between the rich and the poor to reduce
social tensions and promote harmonious socio-economic
development.
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Chapter 5 – Japan
5.1
Development of the minimum wage system
5.1.1
In 1957, the government established the Minimum Wage Council, which
consisted of government officials, academics and representatives of employers and
workers, to study the feasibility of implementing a minimum wage system. After a
thorough research, the Minimum Wage Council recommended in 1958 that the
government should introduce a minimum wage system to ensure that eligible workers
would maintain minimum standards of living. The minimum wage system was
implemented in 1959 through enacting the Minimum Wage Law.
5.2
Coverage of the minimum wage system
5.2.1
Minimum wage requirements apply to all employees, regardless of nature
of employment (e.g. regular, temporary and part-time). Disabled workers who can
perform the job duties are entitled to receive the minimum wage. However, trainees
are not covered by the minimum wage system.
5.3
Minimum wage rates
Prefectural minimum wages
5.3.1
There are prefectural 28 and industrial minimum wages in Japan.
Prefectural minimum wages apply to eligible workers in a specific prefecture. The
prefectural minimum wage rates may vary, depending on the cost of living and the
level of economic development of individual prefectures.
5.3.2
The national average hourly29 prefectural minimum wage in 2007-2008 is
¥673 (HK$45), a 2.1% increase over the corresponding figure in 2006-2007. In
2007-2008, the highest hourly rate is ¥719 30 (HK$48.1) in Tokyo, Osaka and
Kanagawa, while the lowest hourly rate is ¥610 (HK$40.8) in Miyagi, Iwate and
Okinawa.
28
29
30
There are 47 prefectures in Japan.
The statutory working hours are eight hours per day and 40 hours per week.
The average exchange rate in 2006 was ¥1 = HK$0.0669.
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Industrial minimum wages
5.3.3
The respective prefectural labour bureau has established industrial
minimum wages for specified industries in those prefectures where the industries have
operation. Altogether, there are 297 industrial minimum wages in effect. In case a
worker is eligible for both prefectural and industrial minimum wages, the worker will
receive the higher rate.
5.3.4
The national average hourly industrial minimum wage in 2007-2008 is
¥766 (HK$51.2), with the highest hourly rate of ¥910 (HK$60.9) for truck drivers in
Kochi and the lowest hourly rate of ¥616 (HK$42.5) for ceramic ware workers in
Saga.
Real value of the minimum wage rates
5.3.5
2000.
The real value of the minimum wage rates has been appreciating since
Average prefectural minimum wage relative to the average wage of manufacturing
workers
5.3.6
In 2007, the average prefectural minimum wage as a percentage of the
average wage of manufacturing workers was about 32%.
5.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
5.4.1
In 2007, the number of minimum wage workers was small compared to the
total working population and most of them were elderly female workers employed in
small-sized companies.
5.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rates
Authority for determining the minimum wage rates
5.5.1
The prefectural labour bureau is responsible for determining both the
prefectural and industrial minimum wages.
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Advisory body
5.5.2
Under the Minimum Wage Law, a prefectural labour bureau has to consult
the prefectural minimum wage council concerned before determining the final rate for
the particular prefecture. Members of a prefectural minimum wage council may
come from the government, employer associations, labour unions, academic
institutions and social welfare organizations, and are appointed by the prefectural
labour bureau for a term of one year, with the possibility of renewal. The number of
members in such councils varies between 15 and 20 persons, depending on the size of
the prefecture.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rates
5.5.3
When a prefectural minimum wage council makes the recommendation on
the minimum wage rate and the prefectural labour bureau approves the proposed
minimum wage rate, both of them would consider the following criteria:
(a) cost of living;
(b) consumer price index;
(c) economic performance; and
(d) wages of comparable workers.
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rates
5.5.4
Each year, the prefectural minimum wage councils deliberate the
prefectural and industrial minimum wage adjustments in August. The deadline for
the decision is normally 9 August. As the deadline is approaching, each of the
prefectural minimum wage councils would usually agree on a proposed adjustment
rate. Otherwise, decisions are taken by a majority vote. The prefectural labour
bureau considers the proposed rate and makes the final decision by 1 September.
The new prefectural and industrial minimum wages usually come into force on
1 October.
5.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
5.6.1
The prefectural labour bureau is responsible for enforcing the minimum
wage system. The prefectural labour inspectors of the prefectural labour bureau may
enter workplaces, demand presentation of accounting books and documents, inspect
work articles and question workplace compliance.
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5.6.2
The prefectural labour bureau carries out a range of publicity activities,
centring on an annual ten-day campaign to distribute leaflets on minimum wages
(1 – 10 October) to employees and employers and hold briefings to make the
minimum wage rates known to the public. In addition to informing workers of the
revisions, supervision and guidance are provided in an effort to ensure payment of
minimum wages to eligible workers.
Penal provisions
5.6.3
Any person who violates the provisions of paying minimum wages to
eligible workers is liable to a fine of not exceeding ¥20,000 (HK$1,338) 31 per
worker.
5.6.4
Any person who falls under any one of the following categories is liable to
a fine of not exceeding ¥10,000 (HK$669) per worker:
(a) failing to inform workers of the new minimum wages;
(b) making a false report to the prefectural labour bureau; and
(c) refusing, impeding or evading an inspection.
5.7
Empirical study on the minimum wage system
5.7.1
In January 2007, Dr Daiji Kawaguchi and Dr Ken Yamada32 published a
research paper entitled The impact of the minimum wage on female employment in
Japan in the economic journal Contemporary Economic Policy. 33 This article
examined the impact of the minimum wage on employment in Japan, using data
collected between 1993 and 1999.
5.7.2
In the study, there were two groups of low-wage workers. Group A
consisted of workers whose wage was originally above the new adjusted minimum
wage rate and therefore who were not affected by the minimum wage adjustment.
Group B consisted of workers whose wage was below the revised minimum wage rate
but above the prevailing minimum wage rate so that they would benefit from the
adjustment. To estimate the effect of the minimum wage on employment, the
authors compared the percentage of workers losing their jobs in a period of one year
within the two groups.
31
32
33
There are discussions in Japan to raise the penalty on employers who fail to pay minimum wages
to eligible workers from the current ¥20,000 (HK$1,338) to ¥500,000 (HK$33,450) per worker.
Dr Daiji Kawaguchi is an associate professor at the Faculty of Economics of the Hitotsubashi
University, while Dr Ken Yamada is a faculty member of the Department of Economics of the
University College London.
The impact of the minimum wage on female employment in Japan. In: Contemporary Economic
Policy. Vol. 25, pp.107 – 118, January 2007.
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5.7.3
The result of the study indicated that workers in Group B were about
20 – 30% more likely to become unemployed in the year following the minimum
wage adjustment than those in Group A. However, the authors admitted that the
result would be sensitive to the composition of the two groups of workers. In other
words, the result of the study might not be the same if workers with characteristics
different from the sample were chosen for the study.
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Chapter 6 – South Korea
6.1
Development of the minimum wage system
6.1.1
The debate on the establishment of a minimum wage system in South
Korea began in the mid-1980s. With the rise in workers' education and income
levels, they started to question whether government policies aimed at protecting the
interests of employers only. At the same time, the government was increasingly
concerned with the criticism that its export production mainly relied on low-cost
labour and poor working conditions. Accordingly, the government decided to
introduce a minimum wage system, which was intended to ensure that workers would
achieve minimum standards of living.
6.1.2
The Minimum Wage Act was adopted in 1986. When the minimum wage
system was initially introduced, employers were worried about the possible negative
effects, remarking that it would push up the wage level and impose heavy financial
burden on their businesses. In view of this, employers demanded that the
introduction of the system should be postponed to allow enough time for companies
to prepare for it. As a result, the Minimum Wage Act entered into force in 1988.
6.2
Coverage of the minimum wage system
6.2.1
The coverage of the minimum wage system has expanded continuously
since its establishment. In 1988, the minimum wage system initially covered only
manufacturing establishments with 10 or more employees. In 1989, the coverage
was expanded to mining and construction establishments employing 10 or more
employees. In 1990, the minimum wage system was further extended to cover all
industrial establishments employing 10 or more employees. Since 2000, all
establishments, regardless of the number of employees employed, have been under
the coverage of the minimum wage system.
6.2.2
However, disabled workers and domestic workers are not covered by the
minimum wage system.
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6.3
Minimum wage system in selected places
Minimum wage rate
6.3.1
The minimum wage rate is determined by the government on an annual
basis. For the general class of workers, the hourly34 minimum wage rate in 2008 is
3,770 won35 (HK$30.5), an increase of 8.3% over the corresponding figure in 2007.
Youths and apprentices are entitled to receive the full minimum wage rate.
6.3.2
Workers on probation receive 90% of the hourly minimum wage rate
(3,393 won or HK$27.5). Security guards and caretakers only receive 80% of the
hourly minimum wage rate (3,016 won or HK$24.4).
Real value of the minimum wage rate
6.3.3
The real value of the minimum wage rates has been appreciating since
2000 under the deflationary and low inflation economic environment.
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
6.3.4
In 2007, the minimum wage as a percentage of the average wage was
about 28%.
6.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
6.4.1
In 2007, there were some 2.1 million minimum wage workers, or about
13.8% of the labour force. The minimum wage workers were mainly middle-aged
and elderly female workers, who were engaged in the manufacturing and retail
sectors.
6.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
6.5.1
The Minister of Labour is the authority for determining the minimum
wage rate.
34
35
The statutory working time is not more than 44 hours per week and eight hours per day. The
government has plans to shorten statutory working hours from 44 hours to 40 hours a week by
2010.
The average exchange rate in 2006 was 1 won = HK$0.0081.
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Advisory body
6.5.2
The Minimum Wage Council, an advisory body, is established under the
Ministry of Labour. Its main duty is to prepare and submit the proposal of any
minimum wage rate adjustment to the Minister of Labour for approval.
6.5.3
The Minimum Wage Council is composed of 27 members (including the
chairman and vice-chairman): nine labour union representatives, nine employer
association representatives and nine independent members representing the public
interests. The chairman and vice-chairman of the Council must be elected from and
among the independent members, who come from socio-economic fields such as
economics, sociology, social welfare and industrial relations.
6.5.4
The Minimum Wage Council members are all appointed by the Minister of
Labour for a three-year term, with the possibility of renewal. The members
representing workers are nominated by the Federation of Korean Trade Unions, while
those members representing employers by the Korea Employers' Federation.
Meanwhile, the appointments of the independent members require the endorsement of
both trade unions and employer associations.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
6.5.5
When the Minimum Wage Council makes the recommendation on the
minimum wage rate and the Minister of Labour approves the proposed minimum
wage rate, both of them would take the following criteria into account:
(a) cost of living;
(b) economic growth rate;
(c) average wage level;
(d) labour productivity;
(e) employment rate;
(f) consumer price index; and
(g) income distribution.
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Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
6.5.6
Each year between 1 April and 29 June (i.e. 90 days), the Minimum Wage
Council would deliberate on the minimum wage adjustment and submit its proposal to
the Minister of Labour. In theory, decisions in the Minimum Wage Council are
taken by a two-thirds majority vote. In practice, the employers' representatives and
the workers' representatives would bargain over the minimum wage adjustment, with
independent members acting as moderators. The votes of independent members are
decisive because the other two categories of members seldom reach agreement.
6.5.7
The Minister of Labour only has the legal authority to accept or reject the
Minimum Wage Council's proposal, but not to alter it. The Minister of Labour may
send the adjustment proposal back to the Minimum Wage Council for reconsideration
within 20 days. Then the Minimum Wage Council has 10 days to prepare and
submit a revised proposal to the Minister of Labour. This tight schedule ensures that
the adjusted rate can be determined and published by the Minister of Labour by
5 August. The new minimum wage rate will be applicable to the period of January
to December of the following year.
6.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
6.6.1
The Ministry of Labour, which is responsible for enforcing the Minimum
Wage Act, may require workers and employers to report matters relating to wage
disputes, particularly minimum wage issues. The Ministry of Labour also employs
labour inspectors to enforce the minimum wage law. In order to exercise the
authority, the labour inspectors may enter workplaces, demand presentation of
accounting books and documents, inspect work articles and question workplace
compliance.
6.6.2
In addition, employers are required to inform workers of the applicable
minimum wage rates by displaying the notice at conspicuous places or using other
appropriate means.
Penal provisions
6.6.3
Any person who fails to pay the minimum wage rate to eligible workers is
punishable by imprisonment for not more than three years or a fine not exceeding
20 million won (HK$162,000), or both.
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6.6.4
Any person who falls under any of the following categories is punishable
by a fine not exceeding one million won (HK$81,600):
(a) failing to inform workers of the applicable minimum wage rates;
(b) failing to provide records of paying workers the minimum wage; and
(c) refusing, interfering with, or evading the demand or inspection, or
making a false statement on the questions raised by a labour
inspector.
6.7
Empirical study on the minimum wage system
6.7.1
As at the publication of this research report, RLSD has not been able to
obtain the required information.
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Chapter 7 – Taiwan
7.1
Development of the basic wage system
7.1.1
In 1956, Taiwan enacted the Minimum Wage Act, under which a minimum
wage system was established. In 1984, the Labour Standards Act was passed to
supersede the Minimum Wage Act. The objectives of the Labour Standards Act are
to formulate a new minimum wage (or basic wage36) system, specify minimum
standards for working conditions, and protect workers' rights and interests.
7.1.2
Under the Labour Standards Act, there are provisions on wages (including
the basic wage), labour contracts, working hours37, and rights and obligations of
workers and employers. No terms and conditions of a labour contract concluded
between an employer and a worker are allowed to fall below the minimum standards
provided in this Act.
7.1.3
In 1985, the Council of Labour Affairs of the Executive Yuan issued the
regulations on the procedure of determining the basic wage. The framework of the
basic wage system has not been changed since the mid-1980s.
7.2
Coverage of the basic wage system
7.2.1
The basic wage system applies to most workers, including disabled
workers who are assessed for their productive capacity and receive wages
corresponding to a percentage of the minimum wage rate. However, fishermen are
not entitled to receive the basic wage.
7.3
Basic wage rate
7.3.1
In July 2007, the hourly basic wage was revised to NT$9738 (HK$23.5),
an increase of 9.1% over the corresponding figure of NT$6639 (HK$17.4) in effect
since September 1997. The Council of Labour Affairs stated that the basic wage rate
had not been adjusted in over 10 years because of the fear that higher labour costs
might affect the competitiveness of the economy.
36
37
38
39
Taiwan uses the term "basic wage" as the de facto minimum wage.
According to Article 30 of the Labour Standards Act, a worker shall not have regular working time
in excess of eight hours a day and 84 hours every two weeks.
The average exchange rate in 2006 was NT$1 = HK$0.242.
The average exchange rate in 1997 was NT$1 = HK$0.263.
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7.3.2
The basic wage for apprentices is set to be not less than 70% of the adult
rate, which is equivalent to NT$67.9 (HK$16.4) per hour. Disabled workers also
have a lower basic wage rate.40
Relief measures implemented
7.3.3
Against the recent 9.1% increase in the basic wage, the business and
industrial sectors demanded the Council of Labour Affairs to provide relief measures
to lessen the financial impacts on employers. Under such circumstances, in
July 2007, the Council of Labour Affairs implemented relief measures to reduce
financial burdens of small- and medium-sized companies engaged in food and
beverages, and retail businesses. The major relief measures are that:
(a) companies with fewer than 50 employees, during a trial period of one
year, receive a subsidy of NT$10 (HK$2.4) per hour for each
employee;
(b) companies which hire disabled workers for a consecutive period of
three months or longer receive a subsidy of NT$5,000 (HK$1,210)
per month or NT$10 (HK$2.4) per hour for each disabled worker for
a year; and
(c) companies may reimburse up to 80% of the cost of employee training.
Real value of the basic wage rate
7.3.4
Between September 1997 and June 2007, the consumer price index rose by
7.3%. As the basic wage was not adjusted during that period, its real value
depreciated.
Basic wage relative to the average wage of manufacturing workers
7.3.5
In 2007, the ratio of the basic wage to the average wage of manufacturing
workers was about 42%.
40
RLSD has not been able to obtain the basic wage rate for disabled workers.
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7.4
Minimum wage system in selected places
Characteristics of basic wage workers
7.4.1
In 2007, there were some 1.4 million basic wage workers in Taiwan,
accounting for about 13.3% of the labour force. About 65% of the basic wage
workers were women, who were mainly in the age groups of 16 to 20, and 55 or
above. The basic wage workers were mostly engaged in food and beverages, and
retail businesses.
7.5
Process of determining the basic wage rate
Authority for determining the basic wage rate
7.5.1
The Council of Labour Affairs is the authority for determining the basic
wage rate.
Advisory body
7.5.2
The Basic Wage Deliberation Committee is an advisory body established
under the Council of Labour Affairs for the deliberation of basic wage and other
related matters.
7.5.3
The chairman of the Basic Wage Deliberation Committee must be a
director from the Council of Labour Affairs. According to the Labour Standards Act,
the members of the Committee comprise:
(a) one representative from the Council of Labour Affairs (i.e. the
chairman of the Committee);
(b) one representative from the Ministry of Economic Affairs;
(c) one representative from the Ministry of Finance;
(d) one representative from the Ministry of Transportation and
Communication;
(e) one representative from the Council for Economic Planning and
Development;
(f) one representative from the Directorate General of Budget,
Accounting and Statistics of the Executive Yuan;
(g) one representative from the Export Processing Zone Administration
of the Ministry of Economic Affairs;
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(h) four representatives from the employer associations;
(i)
four representatives from the labour unions; and
(j)
one to seven representatives from academic and business research
fields.
7.5.4
The Committee currently has 22 members.
member is two years, with the possibility of renewal.
The term of office of a
Criteria for determining the basic wage rate
7.5.5
When the Basic Wage Deliberation Committee makes the recommendation
on the basic wage rate and the Council of Labour Affairs approves the proposed basic
wage rate, both of them would take the following criteria into account:
(a) current economic performance;
(b) consumer price index;
(c) employment situation;
(d) labour productivity;
(e) workers' wages in different industries; and
(f) survey and statistical figures on household income and expenditures.
7.5.6
According to the Council of Labour Affairs, among these factors, the
current economic performance, consumer price index and labour productivity carry
more weight.
Procedures for determining the basic wage rate
7.5.7
The Basic Wage Deliberation Committee is responsible for deliberating
and submitting the adjusted basic wage to the Council of Labour Affairs for
consideration, with the latter being empowered to determine the final rate. If the
employers' and the workers' representatives in the Committee cannot reach a
compromise on the rate, the Committee may propose more than one rate to the
Council of Labour Affairs for consideration.
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7.6
Minimum wage system in selected places
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
7.6.1
In order to enforce the labour laws and regulations, the Council of Labour
Affairs has established a labour inspection system. No business entity may reject
visits of inspection. In case of rejection by an employer, an inspector may enforce
the visit in conjunction with the police.
7.6.2
In the course of an official visit, an inspector may require an employer to
produce reports, records, books of account and other relevant documents or written
explanations.
7.6.3
A worker may file a complaint to the Council of Labour Affairs or the
inspectorate about any violation by an employer of labour laws and regulations.
Penal provisions
7.6.4
An employer who fails to pay the basic wage to eligible workers is
punishable by a fine of not less than NT$2,000 (HK$484) but not exceeding
NT$20,000 (HK$4,840).
7.6.5
Any person who rejects, avoids or obstructs a labour inspector in the
performance of his official duties is punishable by a fine of not less than NT$10,000
(HK$2,420) but not exceeding NT$50,000 (HK$12,100).
7.6.6
Where the fine remains unpaid after a person has received the demand note
for payment by the Council of Labour Affairs, the case may be referred to the court
for compulsory execution.
7.7
Empirical study on the basic wage system
7.7.1
In December 2001, Professor Huang Jen Te41 published a research report
entitled The Effects of Basic Wage on the Labour Market in Taiwan. The period of
the study covered 1991 to 1998. Professor Huang Jen Te stated that he encountered
several problems when analyzing the effects of the basic wage on the economy.
7.7.2
Firstly, there were no readily available statistics to analyze the effects of
the basic wage changes on employment, inflation and competitiveness of the economy.
Far from ideal inputs were employed for the analysis.
41
He serves at the Department of Economics of the National Chengchi University.
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7.7.3
Secondly, it was very difficult to quantify the precise impact of the basic
wage changes and separate it from influences of the other economic variables such as
the prevailing economic situation. Since such influences could rarely be assumed to
remain constant, Professor Huang's study could not determine to what extent the
observed changes were attributable to the basic wage changes relative to the other
causes. For instance, if the employment level was found to have risen following an
increase in the basic wage, it did not necessarily mean that there had been no adverse
employment effect, as it was conceivable that had there been no change in the basic
wage, the employment level might have increased even more substantially.
7.7.4
Thirdly, the analysis was made more complicated by the fact that all the
effects of the basic wage changes were not likely to be immediate. With the passage
of time, the delayed effects might become more difficult to separate from those
resulting from the other economic variables.
7.7.5
Based on the econometric model formulated, Professor Huang Jen Te
observed that the implementation of the basic wage system did not have any
significant adverse effects on employment, inflation and competitiveness of the
economy. In addition, there was no statistical evidence to show that the basic wage
exerted any negative impact on the employment level of low-wage workers and
youths.
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Chapter 8 – The United Kingdom
8.1
Development of the minimum wage system
8.1.1
Statutory support for minimum wages in the United Kingdom (UK) dates
back to 1891. In fact, minimum wages had been in force until 1993 when the UK
government abolished the Wages Councils which were responsible for setting a
legally enforceable minimum wage in an industry.42 Following the abolition, there
was growing evidence of jobs being offered below the old minimum rates. 43
Contrary to the original intention of raising employment, there was little evidence of
increased employment. Instead, the removal of minimum wages led to a loss of jobs,
particularly in the retail and catering sectors.
8.1.2
Following the election in May 1997, the new Labour Government
promised in the Queen's Speech to uphold its manifesto commitment by introducing
legislation on a new national minimum wage system. During the summer of 1997, a
preliminary non-statutory Low Pay Commission was established to start taking
evidence on the level of a new national minimum wage. In November of the same
year, the National Minimum Wage Bill was introduced in Parliament and
subsequently enacted as the National Minimum Wage Act in 1998, giving the
Commission a statutory footing. With the passage of the Act, the new minimum
wage system has been in force since 1 April 1999.
Low Pay Commission
8.1.3
The primary aim of the Low Pay Commission is to advise the government
on the coverage of the minimum wage system and the initial minimum wage rate. It
undertakes the following activities to form its expert advice:
(a) commissioning research projects;
(b) analyzing relevant data and actively encouraging the Office of
National Statistics to carry out better estimates of the incidence of low
pay;
(c) carrying out surveys of firms in low-paying sectors;
(d) consulting employers, workers and their representatives;
42
43
For further details on the historical development of the minimum wage system, please see
Legislative Council Secretariat (1999).
A Low Pay Network study analyzed almost 6 000 jobs offered at Jobcentres in the catering,
retailing, clothing manufacturing and hairdressing sectors in April and May 1994. Over a third of
the jobs paid less than the rates set by the now defunct Wages Council.
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(e) taking written and oral evidence from a wide range of organizations;
and
(f) paying fact-finding visits throughout the UK to meet employers,
employees and representative organizations.
8.1.4
The nine members of the Low Pay Commission (including the Chairman)
are drawn from employers associations, labour unions and the academic field. All
the Commissioners serve in an individual capacity and not as representatives of the
organizations for which they work, and are appointed by the government.
8.2
Coverage of the minimum wage system
8.2.1
The minimum wage system applies to most of the UK workers. 44
Nonetheless, there are several categories of people who are not entitled to receive the
minimum wage, and they are:
(a) genuinely self-employed or company directors (unless they have a
contract of employment);
(b) school children below school-leaving age45;
(c) family members working in family businesses;
(d) individuals living and working within the family, such as au pairs and
nannies;
(e) students attending higher education courses requiring attendance for a
period of work experience;
(f) trainees on government-funded schemes46;
(g) members of the armed forces;
(h) share fishermen47;
44
45
46
47
(i)
prisoners working under prison rules; and
(j)
voluntary workers.
Agricultural workers have separate minimum pay rates set by the Agricultural Wages Board.
The definition of "compulsory school age" varies slightly in England, Wales, Scotland and
Northern Ireland. Generally speaking, in the UK, the "compulsory school age" starts at age five
and ends at age 16.
Some of these schemes are: (a) Entry to Employment in England; (b) Get Ready for Work in
Scotland; (c) Access in Northern Ireland; and (d) Skillbuild in Wales.
Share fishermen are fishermen who receive a share of the profit or gross earning of a fishing boat.
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Disabled employees
8.2.2
The entitlement to minimum wage applies to all workers regardless of
individual levels of ability, productivity or effectiveness. Therefore, if a disabled
person is a "worker"48, he or she must be paid at least the minimum wage rate.
However, for disabled people who undertake work-related activities for therapeutic
reasons and have no contractual obligation to work or right to any payment or other
reward, they will not count as workers and will not be entitled to minimum wage.
8.3
Minimum wage rate
8.3.1
ages.
There are three minimum wage rates applicable to workers of different
Starting from 1 October 2007, the rates have been as follows:
(a) full rate of £5.52 (HK$79.1)49 an hour for adults (people aged 22 or
above);
(b) development rate of £4.6 (HK$65.9) an hour for workers aged 18 to
21 inclusive; and
(c) development rate of £3.4 (HK$48.7) an hour for workers aged 16 to
17 inclusive.
Accommodation Offset
8.3.2
While accommodation payments received by a worker may count towards
the minimum wage rates, there is a limit on the amount of such payments. That limit
is known as the Accommodation Offset, which is set at £4.30 (HK$61.6) per day from
1 October 2007. However, benefits in kind such as meals, cars and fuel do not count
towards the minimum wage rates.
48
49
A worker is defined as someone who has a contract of employment, or in the case where there is
no contract of employment, someone who does work personally for someone else and is not
genuinely self-employed.
The average exchange rate in 2006 was £1 = HK$14.33.
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Fair piece rate
8.3.3
Under the National Minimum Wage Regulations 1999 (Amendment)
Regulations 2004, from 1 October 2004 onwards, employers are required to pay either
their workers at least the minimum wage rate for every hour they work or the fair
piece rate for each piece produced or task performed, determined by reference to the
rate of performance of an average worker. The fair piece rate is set in such a way
that workers of average speed could earn the minimum wage rate. From
6 April 2005 onwards, the fair piece rate has increased by 120% of the rate set in
October 2004.50
Real value of the minimum wage rate
8.3.4
Before the introduction of the current minimum wage system, the rise in
the wages of the lowest-paid had often lagged behind the increases in inflation and the
average wage. With the new national minimum wage in force, except for the first
two years of its introduction, the minimum wage rate has surged in real terms, rising
faster than the increases in retail price inflation. Since 2004, it has been increasing
faster than average earnings as well. By December 2006, the value of the adult
hourly rate of minimum wage had increased by 49% since its introduction. In
comparison, the Retail Price Index had increased by 23% and average earnings by
36% over the same period.
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
8.3.5
Since 2000, the minimum wage has increased more than the average pay.
In 2005, the ratio of the minimum wage to the average wage was 35%, compared to
that of 32% in 2000.
8.4
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
8.4.1
The Low Pay Commission estimated that in 2006 the total number of
minimum wage workers was around 1.3 million, or 5.1% of the labour force.
Two-thirds of the minimum wage workers were women and 60% of minimum wage
jobs were part-time in nature.
50
For example, from 1 October 2004 to March 2005, if a worker, who was paid the prevailing
minimum wage of £4.85 (HK$69.5), worked at the average speed produced 10 items an hour, the
fair piece rate for that particular item would be 48.5p (HK$6.9). From April 2005 onwards, this
fair piece rate has increased by 120%, i.e. 48.5p (HK$6.9) x 120% = 58.2p (HK$8.3).
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8.5
Minimum wage system in selected places
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
8.5.1
The UK government is responsible for determining the minimum wage
rates with the advice of the Low Pay Commission, subject to Parliament's approval.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
8.5.2
According to the Low Pay Commission, the minimum wage rates are not
decided on the basis of a rigid formula. Instead, they are determined according to
the prevailing economic circumstances. The minimum wage rates must balance the
aim to address low pay with the need to ensure that the rates are manageable for
businesses and the economy. In general, the criteria for adjusting the minimum
wage rates include: economic conditions, pay differentials, business costs,
competitiveness of the economy, inflation rate and employment level.
Procedures for determining the minimum wage rate
8.5.3
The UK government is empowered to determine the minimum wage rates
with the advice of the Low Pay Commission. After the government has made a
decision on the rates for the ensuing year, it puts forward the determined adjustments
to Parliament via regulations. These regulations are subject to affirmative resolution,
and debated in Parliament which can agree to the regulations or otherwise. In
practice, Parliament has not overturned any recommendations made by the
government on the minimum wage rates. The adjustment of the minimum wage
rates, if any, usually takes place in October of a given year.
8.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
8.6.1
Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has operational
responsibility for enforcing the minimum wage system through the following
combination of measures:
(a) publicizing employer obligations and employee rights, principally
through direct advertisements, the employment right website and the
minimum wage helpline;
(b) requiring employers to keep minimum wage records;
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(c) investigating complaints about non-payment of minimum wage.
Compliance officers of HMRC will visit employers thought likely to
be paying below the minimum wage rates and take enforcement
actions when necessary51; and
(d) assisting individuals in taking action through an employment tribunal
or the civil court.
Compliance statistics
8.6.2
Table 5 shows that over 61 000 enquiries were received by the HMRC
Helpline during 2005-2006, an increase of 7% over 2004-2005 and 15% over
2003-2004. More than 2 100 complaints about non-payment of minimum wage
were received in 2005-2006, an increase of 10% over 2004-2005 and 7% over
2003-2004. In 2005-2006, HMRC completed around 4 900 investigations on
minimum wage underpayment, which arose either from complaints made by workers
or third parties, or were identified through its risk assessment of employers who were
considered most likely to be non-compliant. The UK government has stated that the
decline in the number of completed investigations in each of the last three years was
largely due to the increased complexity and technical nature of the investigations
undertaken.
8.6.3
The incidence of non-compliance found during HMRC investigations has
fallen over recent years: from 39% in 2003-2004 to 32% in 2005-2006. The value of
underpayment identified has fluctuated significantly between years: underpayment
totalling £2.5 million (HK$35.8 million) was identified in 2003-2004, rising to nearly
£3.8 million (HK$54.5 million) in 2004-2005, but subsequently dropping to
£3.3 million (HK$47.3 million) in 2005-2006. The average value of underpayment
per worker in 2005-2006 was £130 (HK$1,863), considerably lower than in the
previous two years, mainly due to an increase in the number of workers involved in
the non-compliance cases concerned. In particular, there were 2 211 cases of
non-compliance reported in 2003-2004, involving a total of 9 428 workers, whereas
there were 1 582 cases in 2005-2006, involving 25 314 workers.
51
The targeted low-paying sectors include: hairdressing, childcare, agriculture, and food processing
and packing sectors.
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Table 5 – National minimum wage: enquiries and complaints to the Inland
Revenue/HMRC, and enforcement action taken, 2003-2006
2003-2004
Enquiries received by
HMRC helpline
2004-2005
2005-2006
53 226
57 733
61 355
Complaints of
underpayment
1 969
1 910
2 100
Visits to employers(1)
5 541
5 155
4 904
Enforcement notices
issued
45
32
81
3
0
1
Penalty notices
issued
Value of
underpayments
identified
£2.5 million
£3.8 million
£3.3 million
(HK$35.8 million) (HK$54.5 million) (HK$47.3 million)
Note: (1) These figures are for the number of cases closed with an inspection having been made.
Source: Low Pay Commission (2007).
Penal provisions
8.6.4
The penalties for non-compliance are set out in the National Minimum
Wage Act, ranging from financial penalties of twice the hourly minimum wage rate
per worker52 per day for continuous non-payment of minimum wage to prosecution
with fines of a maximum of £5,000 (HK$71,650) for specific criminal offences,
which include:
(a) underpaying minimum wage workers;
(b) failing to keep minimum wage records;
(c) producing and keeping false minimum wage records; and
(d) refusing to give minimum wage records to the enforcement agency.
52
An adult minimum wage rate of £5.52 (HK$79.1) is applied in the calculation.
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8.7
Minimum wage system in selected places
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
8.7.1
In its 2007 report submitted to the UK government, the Low Pay
Commission reported the findings of several research studies on the impact of the
minimum wage system in terms of pay differentials, employment, number of working
hours and second job holding, amongst others.
8.7.2
Denvir and Loukas found that the recent minimum wage upratings had
affected company pay structures, removing pay grades and squeezing differentials.
However, in an empirical study, Lam, Ormerod, Ritchie and Vaze looked at the
impact of minimum wage on company pay policies. They found that when
minimum wage was introduced and had been uprated, companies generally responded
by maintaining the cash differentials between different pay grades. The implication
was that wage inequalities would be reduced as the percentage increase in earnings
would be higher for those at minimum wage.53 They noted that minimum wage
"does appear to be reducing inequality at the bottom of the wage distribution".54
8.7.3
Stewart used a variety of data sources to look at the impact of minimum
wage on individual employment probabilities. In all three studies, he found no
significant effects of the introduction of minimum wage or its initial upratings on
employment for men, women, adults or young workers. Dickens and Draca also
found no employment effects when they investigated the 2003 minimum wage
upratings.55
8.7.4
Studies conducted by Experian, and Galindo-Rueda and Pereira found
evidence to suggest that the introduction of minimum wage and its subsequent
upratings had slowed employment growth in those counties or regions where wages
needed to adjust the most in order to comply with the minimum wage system.
However, these effects were generally small. On the other hand, a comprehensive
study conducted by Stewart found no evidence of any adverse employment effects at
the area level. In the study, statistically insignificant positive effects were recorded
even for those groups most affected by the implementation of minimum wage.56
53
54
55
56
For example, Employee A receives the minimum wage rate, i.e. £5.52 (HK$79.1), and Employee B
receives £1 (HK$14.3) more than the minimum wage rate, i.e. £6.52 (HK$93.4). According to
the study, if the minimum wage rate is to increase by 10% and becomes £6.07 (HK$87), the
employer will maintain the cash differentials by still paying Employee B £1 (HK$14.3) more than
the minimum wage rate, i.e. £7.07 (HK$101.3). Therefore, the percentage increase in earnings
will be higher for Employee A (10%) when compared to that of Employee B (8.4%).
Low Pay Commission (2007).
Ibid.
Ibid.
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8.7.5
Minimum wage does not appear to have much impact on the aggregate
number of hours worked in the economy. Connolly and Gregory investigated how
the hours of low-paid women had been affected by the introduction of minimum wage.
They found that the three-year effect was greater than the one-year effect, albeit both
were insignificant. This longer run effect was also picked up by Stewart and
Swaffield. They found no statistically significant evidence of an immediate impact
of minimum wage but, allowing for longer-run adjustments, the result did suggest that
the introduction of minimum wage had led to reductions in the working week of about
one to two hours for both male and female workers covered by minimum wage.57
8.7.6
In an analysis of second job holding, Robinson and Wadsworth concluded
that minimum wage had neither caused individuals to give up, or reduced hours in,
their second jobs (due to increased earnings in their first jobs), nor encouraged more
people to take additional jobs (if hours in their main job had been reduced).58
57
58
Low Pay Commission (2007).
Ibid.
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Chapter 9 – The United States
9.1
Development of the minimum wage system
9.1.1
The first state in the United States (US) to pass the state minimum wage
law is Massachusetts, with the legislation being passed in 1912. By 1923, 17 states
had adopted minimum wage legislation, mainly for women and minors in a variety of
industries and occupations. However, in that year, the US Supreme Court made a
decision, declaring the minimum wage law in the District of Columbia
unconstitutional on the ground that it violated the principle of liberty of contract in
personal employment. Therefore, during the ensuing decade, the movement for such
legislation almost came to a halt.
9.1.2
The economic depression of the 1930s aroused concerns for job security
and working conditions for all workers in the country. There were two events
occurred in the late 1930s that were considered especially significant for the
development of a minimum wage system. The US Supreme Court, in 1937, upheld
the constitutionality of state minimum wage laws, reversing its former decision.
Then in 1938, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was enacted, which established a
national minimum wage at US$0.25. The Act was applicable to all employees
engaged in interstate commerce and the production of goods for interstate commerce.
9.1.3
Over the years, FLSA has been revised to uprate the minimum wage and
extend its coverage to some additional categories of employees59, amongst other
amendments60, with the Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor being
responsible for administering and enforcing the Act. In August 1996, FLSA was
amended to provide a one-time two-step increase in the minimum wage and a
sub-minimum wage was also established for employees under 20 years of age.
9.1.4
In early January 2007, the newly elected Democratic leadership of the
th
110 Congress brought in a new bill proposing the first federal minimum wage
increase in a decade. The bill was eventually reconciled and passed in the two
Houses. In May 2007, President George Bush signed a spending bill that amended
FLSA to increase the federal minimum wage in three steps: to US$5.85 (HK$45.4)61
per hour effective July 2007; to US$6.55 (HK$50.9) per hour effective July 2008; and
to US$7.25 (HK$56.3) per hour effective July 2009.
59
60
61
The coverage has since been extended to employees in retail and service enterprises, local transit,
construction and gasoline service stations, state and local government employees, workers in retail
and service trades, domestic workers and workers under the age of 20.
Apart from establishing the minimum wage, FLSA also provides for overtime pay, record keeping,
and child labour standards affecting full-time and part-time workers in the private sector and in the
federal, state and local governments.
The average exchange rate in 2006 was US$1 = HK$7.768.
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9.2
Minimum wage system in selected places
Coverage of the minimum wage system
9.2.1
There are two mechanisms under which an employee can be covered by
FLSA: enterprise coverage and individual coverage.
Enterprise coverage
9.2.2
Employees who work for the following businesses or organizations having
at least two employees are covered by FLSA:
(a) firms with an annual
(HK$3.88 million); and
turnover
of
at
least
US$500,000
(b) hospitals, businesses which provide medical or nursing care for
residents, institutions primarily engaged in the care of the sick, the
aged, or the mentally ill or defective who reside in the premises,
schools (including schools for disabled children) and preschools, and
government agencies.
Individual coverage
9.2.3
Where there is no enterprise coverage, some employees can be covered by
FLSA if they engage in the production of goods and services for commerce. In
addition, domestic service workers such as day workers, housekeepers, chauffeurs,
full-time baby-sitters, and cooks are covered by law.
Exemption
9.2.4
Under FLSA, some employees are not covered by the minimum wage
system, such as:
(a) executive, administrative, professional, outside sales and computer
employees;
(b) employees of
establishments;
certain
seasonal
amusement
or
recreational
(c) employees of certain small newspapers and switchboard operators of
small telephone companies;
(d) seamen employed on foreign vessels;
(e) employees engaged in fishing operations;
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(f) employees engaged in newspaper delivery;
(g) farm workers employed in small farms (i.e. farms employing less than
500 man-days of farm labour in any calendar quarter of the preceding
calendar year); and
(h) casual baby-sitters and persons employed as companions to the
elderly or infirm.
9.3
Minimum wage rates
Federal minimum wage
9.3.1
Starting from July 2007, the federal minimum wage has been US$5.85
(HK$45.4) per hour. It will be US$6.55 (HK$50.9) per hour effective July 2008;
and US$7.25 (HK$56.3) per hour effective July 2009.
State minimum wages
9.3.2
Apart from the federal minimum wage provisions prescribed by FLSA,
many states have enacted their own minimum wage laws. The federal FLSA
provides a floor for wages, whereas the states, where conditions permit, are allowed to
go beyond the federal statute and enact higher standards. In cases where an
employee is subject to both the state and federal minimum wage laws, the employee is
entitled to the higher of the two minimum wages.
9.3.3
Currently, 31 states and the District of Columbia have minimum wage
rates which exceed the federal minimum wage. Their hourly minimum rates are
between US$6.15 (HK$47.8) and US$7.93 (HK$61.6).
Youth minimum wage
9.3.4
A minimum wage of not less than US$4.25 (HK$33) an hour is permitted
for employees under 20 years of age during their first 90 consecutive calendar days of
employment with a new employer, as long as their work does not displace other
workers. After 90 consecutive days of employment or when the employee reaches
20 years of age, whichever comes first, the employee is eligible to receive the federal
minimum wage.
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Sub-minimum wages
9.3.5
To prevent loss of employment opportunities for some individuals, FLSA
authorizes employers to pay certain individuals at wage rates below the statutory
minimum after obtaining authorizing certificates from the Wage and Hour Division.
Such individuals include:
(a) vocational education students. Employers who hire these students
(high school students of at least 16 years old) must pay them not less
than 75% of the federal minimum wage;
(b) full-time students employed in retail or service establishments,
agriculture or institutions of higher education. Employers who hire
these students must pay them not less than 85% of the federal
minimum wage. The certificate also limits the hours that students
may work up to eight hours a day, no more than 20 hours a week
when school is in session and 40 hours when school is out, and
requires employers to follow child labour law62; and
(c) workers with disabilities. They are individuals whose earning or
productive capacity "for the work being performed" is impaired by a
physical or mental disability, including those relating to age or injury.
The fact that a worker may have a disability is not in and of itself
sufficient to warrant the payment of a sub-minimum wage.
Disabilities which may affect productive capacity include blindness,
mental illness, mental retardation, cerebral palsy, alcoholism and drug
addiction.63
9.3.6
These sub-minimum wages must be commensurate wage rates based on
the workers' individual productivity, no matter how limited, in proportion to the wage
and productivity of experienced workers who do not have disabilities performing
essentially the same type, quality, and quantity of work in the geographic area from
which the labour force of the community is drawn. The key elements in determining
the commensurate wage rates are:
(a) determining the standard for those workers who do not have disability,
which is the objective gauge against which the productivity of the
workers with disability is measured;
62
63
Child labour law prohibits persons younger than 18 years old from working in certain jobs, and
also sets rules concerning the hours and times employees under 16 years of age may work.
The followings, taken by themselves, are not considered to be disabilities eligible for
sub-minimum wages: education disabilities, chronic unemployment, receipt of welfare benefits,
non-attendance at school, juvenile delinquency, and correctional parole or probation.
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(b) determining the prevailing wage, which is the wage paid to those
experienced workers who do not have disability for the same or
similar work and who are performing such work in the area; and
(c) evaluating the quantity and quality of the productivity of the workers
with disability.64
9.3.7
For employers without an authorizing certificate, they must pay the
workers with disability at least the applicable minimum wage regardless of the
productivity of the workers.
Tipped employees
9.3.8
Tipped employees are those who customarily receive more than US$30
(HK$233) a month in tips. The employer may consider tips as part of wages, but
direct wages must account for at least US$2.13 (HK$16.6) an hour. If an employee's
tips combined with the employer's cash wage do not equal to the minimum hourly
wage, the employer must make up the difference.
Real value of the federal minimum wage rate
9.3.9
In real terms, the value of the federal minimum wage rate has been on a
downward slope due to inflation – it fell about 28% between 1979 and 2006, with the
real value in 2006 being the lowest since 1955.
Federal minimum wage relative to the average wage
9.3.10
The ratio of the federal minimum wage to the average wage had been in
steady decline, from 40% in 1998 to 31% in 2006, with the latter being the lowest
level since 1947.
64
Sub-minimum wages are reviewed and adjusted, if appropriate, at periodic intervals. At a
minimum, the productivity of hourly paid workers is re-evaluated every six months and a new
prevailing wage survey is conducted at least every 12 months.
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9.4
Minimum wage system in selected places
Characteristics of minimum wage workers
9.4.1
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics under the Department of
Labor, 76.5 million American workers in 2006 were paid at hourly rates, representing
59.7% of all wage and salary workers. Of those paid by the hour, 409 000 workers
were reported as earning exactly US$5.15 (HK$40), the prevailing federal minimum
wage then. Some 1.3 million workers were reported as earning wages below the
minimum wage. Together, these 1.7 million workers with wages at or below the
minimum wage made up 2.2% of all hourly-paid workers.
9.4.2
The minimum wage workers tend to be young. In 2006, about half of
those workers earning US$5.15 (HK$40) or less were under 25 years of age, and
about one-fourth of workers earning at or below the federal minimum wage were
aged 16 – 19. Among men and women, about 3% of women paid hourly rates
reported receiving wages at or below the prevailing federal minimum, compared with
fewer than 2% of men.
9.4.3
By major occupational group, the highest proportion of workers earning at
or below the federal minimum wage in 2006 was in service occupations, at about 7%
among workers who were paid at hourly rates. Nearly three in four workers earning
US$5.15 (HK$40) or less were employed in service occupations, mostly in food
preparation and service jobs. Less than 1% of hourly-paid workers in management
and professional occupations and in natural resources, construction and maintenance
occupations earned at or below the federal minimum wage.
9.5
Process of determining the minimum wage rates
Authorities for determining the minimum wage rates
9.5.1
Congress determines the federal minimum wage rate, whereas the
individual state legislatures set their state minimum wage rates which can be higher
than the federal minimum wage rate.
Criteria for determining the federal minimum wage rate
9.5.2
Under FLSA, the value of the federal minimum wage rates is adjusted
according to the changes in the cost of living, productivity and the level of wages in
manufacturing, and the ability of employers to absorb wage increases.
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Procedures for determining the federal minimum wage rate
9.5.3
When it is determined that the prevailing federal minimum wage needs to
be changed, Congress can introduce a bill to effect such an adjustment. The use of
this approach is on the ground that it permits any minimum wage decision to be taken
with the participation of the highest authority and with close scrutiny ensured by
legislative hearings and debates.
9.5.4
The federal minimum wage is not adjusted on a regular basis. There
were only seven adjustments in the period of 1980-2007.
9.6
Enforcement and penalty
Enforcement
9.6.1
The Wage and Hour Division enforces FLSA through various measures to
ensure employers' compliance with the Act's requirements. Investigators from the
Wage and Hour Division conduct investigations and gather information on
wage-related matters. Where violations are found, investigators may recommend
changes in employment practices, and through court action if necessary, to recover
wages for the employees that have been underpaid.
9.6.2
In addition, for a worker with disability paid at the sub-minimum wage,
he/she or his/her parents may petition the Administrator of the Wage and Hour
Division for a review of his or her special wage rate by a Department of Labor
Administrative Law Judge.
Penal provisions
9.6.3
Fines of up to US$11,000 (HK$85,448) per violation may be assessed
against employers who violate the youth employment provisions of the law and up to
US$1,100 (HK$8,545) per violation against employers who willfully or repeatedly
violate the minimum wage or overtime pay provisions. Willful violations may also
be prosecuted criminally and fined up to US$10,000 (HK$77,680). A second
conviction may result in imprisonment.
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9.7
Minimum wage system in selected places
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
9.7.1
A series of studies in the 1990s challenged the prior consensus of the
employment effects resulting from the minimum wage that if one raised the cost of
employing the lowest-skilled workers by increasing the minimum wage, employers
would demand fewer of them. In particular, the study conducted by David Card and
Alan Krueger found evidence that employment in fast-food restaurants actually rose
after a minimum wage hike.
Other studies though, particularly those by
David Neumark and William Wascher, consistently found the opposite. Neumark
argued that employers spent less on training their workers as the labour costs rose;
that more students dropped out of school, being lured by fatter pay-packets; and that
workers in their late 20s earned less if they had been exposed to high minimum wages
as teenagers. In any event, the recent consensus seemed to be that raising minimum
wages had minor negative effects at worst. Lawrence Katz, an economist at Harvard
University, agreed that "most reasonably well-done estimates show small negative
effects on employment among teenagers."
9.7.2
According to a recent article published in the Economist (2006), most
economists agreed that a higher minimum wage did not do much to relieve poverty
because many minimum wage workers were not poor and many poor people would
not gain since they did not work. Supporters of an increase in minimum wages,
though, argued that once the "spillover" effects were included on workers who earned
just above the minimum wage (whose wage would rise as a result), the income gains
from a hike benefited mostly the poor families.
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Chapter 10 – Singapore
10.1
Background
10.1.1
Singapore has no minimum wage law. The country has a flexible wage
system in which the National Wage Council (NWC) advises the government on wage
policies and recommends non-binding wage adjustments on an annual basis.
10.2
National Wage Council
Historical background
10.2.1
In 1970, there were labour shortages and indications of a possible wage
explosion in Singapore. The government, unwilling to allow wages and fringe
benefits to rise substantially for fear of retarding industrial growth, attempted to
increase labour supply by encouraging female workers to enter the labour force, and
allowing foreign workers to be imported. Despite these efforts, labour shortages
persisted. Firms started to offer higher wage to workers. Faced with a tight labour
market and unwilling to rely excessively on foreign workers, the government set up
NWC in 1972 to regulate wages in Singapore.
Function
10.2.2
NWC is a tripartite body comprising a Chairman from the academic field
and representatives from the government, employers and unions as its members. In
2007-2008, NWC comprises 18 members: the Chairman, six union representatives,
six employer representatives and five government representatives. NWC serves as
an advisory body to:
(a) formulate the yearly wage guidelines for implementation by
employers, unions and the government;
(b) recommend necessary adjustments in wage structures to facilitate
business growth, reward workers for their efforts and help strengthen
Singapore's long-term economic competitiveness; and
(c) advise the adoption of strategic measures for the promotion of market
efficiency, higher productivity and human resources development.
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Non-mandatory guidelines
10.2.3
Every year in May, NWC releases wage guidelines which are derived
based on the principle of consensus and unanimity, i.e. the guidelines have to be
accepted by all council members. The guidelines are recommendations only, and are
non-mandatory in the sense that they do not have the force of law.
10.2.4
In deciding the wage recommendations, NWC takes into consideration
factors like domestic economic growth, productivity growth, Singapore's international
competitiveness, domestic employment and unemployment situations, productivity,
unit labour cost, inflation and the world economic situation. The NWC guidelines
apply to all employees in both domestic and foreign firms, and across the private and
public sectors. Although these guidelines are not compulsory, they serve as a basis
for wage negotiations between employers and unions and are widely implemented.
10.3
Study on minimum wage
10.3.1
As at the publication of this research report, RLSD has not been able to
obtain any information relating to minimum wage discussion in Singapore.65
65
RLSD has enquired the Ministry of Manpower of Singapore to provide the necessary information.
Thus far, the Ministry has not replied.
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Chapter 11 – Analysis
11.1
Introduction
11.1.1
Based on the findings in the previous chapters, this chapter highlights the
following aspects to facilitate Members' deliberation on the minimum wage systems
in Australia, France, Guangdong, Shenzhen, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, the United
Kingdom (UK), the United States (US) and Singapore:
(a) development of the minimum wage system;
(b) coverage of the minimum wage system;
(c) minimum wage rate;
(d) process of determining the minimum wage rate;
(e) enforcement and penalty; and
(f) empirical studies on the minimum wage system.
11.1.2
Apart from Singapore, all the other selected places studied have
established a minimum wage system for regulating pay at the lower end of the labour
market, thus providing a floor for wage levels across the economy. Since Singapore
does not have a minimum wage system in place, it would not be included in the
discussion of the various aspects of the minimum wage system. Nonetheless, the
role of the National Wage Council of Singapore would be discussed in comparison
with the role of the wage-setting authorities in the other selected places.
11.1.3
To facilitate Members' discussion, Table 6 on pages 68 – 71 presents an
overall comparison of the main features of the minimum wage systems of the selected
places studied. Table 7 on page 72 highlights the major findings of empirical studies
on the minimum wage system.
11.2
Development of the minimum wage system
11.2.1
In this study, nine places have established their own minimum wage
system, which aims to guarantee the basic living standards of workers and their
dependents and protect workers' interests. Australia is a pioneer in establishing the
minimum wage system (as early as in 1907), followed by the US (1938), France
(1950), Taiwan (1956), Japan (1959), South Korea (1988), Guangdong (1994) and
Shenzhen (1994).
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11.2.2
In the case of the UK, statutory support for minimum wage dates back to
1891. Minimum wages had been in force until 1993 when it was abolished by the
prevailing government. In 1997, when the Labour Party was elected to power, it
re-introduced the minimum wage system in 1999.
11.2.3
In all these selected places, the establishment of the minimum wage
systems was by means of legislation.
11.3
Coverage of the minimum wage system
11.3.1
In the selected places studied, the minimum wage system covers most
workers, rather than only certain categories of workers. In particular, in Guangdong,
Shenzhen, South Korea and the US, the coverage of the minimum wage system has
expanded continuously since their establishment. For instance, in South Korea, the
minimum wage system initially covered only manufacturing establishments with
10 or more employees in 1988. Since 2000, all establishments, regardless of the
number of employees employed, have been under the coverage of the minimum wage
system.
11.3.2
In Guangdong and Shenzhen, between 1994 and 2003, the minimum wage
system covered only full-time workers. Since 2004, the coverage of the minimum
wage system has been expanded to part-time workers.
11.3.3
In the US, the coverage was initially applicable to employees engaged in
interstate commerce when the Fair Labor Standards Act was enacted in 1938. Over
the years, the coverage has been extended to employees in retail and service
enterprises, local transit, construction and gasoline service stations, state and local
government employees, workers in retail and service trades, domestic workers and
youths under the age of 20.
Disabled employees
11.3.4
In France, Guangdong, Shenzhen and South Korea, disabled employees
are not covered under the minimum wage system, whereas in Australia, Japan, Taiwan,
the UK and the US, they are included in the system.
11.3.5
In Australia, Taiwan and the US, disabled employees are assessed for their
productive capacity and receive wages corresponding to a percentage of the minimum
wage rate. In particular, employers in the US are required to apply for an
authorizing certificate before they can pay sub-minimum wages to disabled
employees. In the case of the UK, if disabled employees are categorized as
"workers", they must be paid the minimum wage rate. In Japan, disabled employees
who can perform the job duties are entitled to receive the minimum wage rate.
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11.4
Minimum wage system in selected places
Minimum wage rate
11.4.1
Among the selected places which have a minimum wage system in place,
Australia, France, South Korea, Taiwan and the UK set a single minimum wage rate
for adults. Japan, Guangdong and Shenzhen, however, while having an overall
national legal framework, set different rates at the regional and local levels. The US
has a federal minimum wage rate, whereas the individual states set their own
minimum wage rates which can be higher than the federal minimum wage rate.
11.4.2 The hourly minimum wage rate for adults ranges from HK$4.4 to HK$82.5
among the places studied. In most cases, reduced minimum wage rates (62% – 90%
of the adult rates) are set for youths and apprentices, e.g. apprentices in Taiwan,
youths in the UK and the US, and workers on probation, security guards and
caretakers in South Korea. France, in particular, has set a wide range of minimum
wage rates for apprentices, from 25% to 78%, depending on their age and
qualification.
Relief measures implemented
11.4.3
Among the places studied, only France and Taiwan have relief measures
implemented in view of the minimum wage system. In France, the government has
adopted regulations enabling companies to claim wage subsidies for minimum wage
workers. Such companies are eligible for exemption in social security contribution.
In Taiwan, the government provided one-off financial measures to reduce financial
burdens of small- and medium-sized companies engaged in food and beverages, and
retail businesses. The major relief measures included providing financial subsidies
to employers and reimbursing up to 80% of the cost of employee training.
Real value of the minimum wage rate
11.4.4
Among the places studied, apart from Taiwan and the US, the real value of
the minimum wage rate has been appreciating since 2001. In Taiwan, the real value
depreciated by 7.3% between 1997 and 2007. In the US, the real value of the
minimum wage rate depreciated by 28% from 1979 to 2006, with the real value in
2006 being the lowest since 1955.
Minimum wage relative to the average wage
11.4.5 Among the places studied, the percentage of the minimum wage relative to
the average wage varies between 28% and 48%. France is the only place studied
where the ratio of the real growth of the minimum wage rate to the real increase in
average earnings is stipulated to be greater than 50% in legislation.
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11.5
Minimum wage system in selected places
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for determining the minimum wage rate
11.5.1
In the places studied, three different types of authorities are responsible for
determining the minimum wage rates in their respective jurisdictions. In Australia,
an independent, statutory body is responsible for setting the minimum wage rates. In
the UK and the US, such responsibility rests upon the legislature. For all the other
places, the government is responsible for setting the minimum wage rates.
11.5.2
Official advisory bodies are established in France, Japan, South Korea,
Taiwan and the UK to provide advice and recommendations to their respective
minimum wage setting authorities. Their members may come from the government,
employer associations, labour unions, and academic and business research fields.
11.5.3
In Singapore, there is no minimum wage system in place. The country
has a flexible wage system in which a tripartite body (comprising members from the
government, employer associations and labour unions) recommends non-binding
wage adjustments to the government.
Criteria for determining the minimum wage rate
11.5.4
When determining the minimum wage rate, the authorities of the places
studied adopt similar criteria, which include the current economic performance,
workers' basic needs, average wage, labour productivity, inflation rate and
employment situation. In Guangdong and Shenzhen, the authorities also consider
the amount of social security benefits.
Frequency of minimum wage adjustment
11.5.5
As regards the frequency of minimum wage adjustment, Australia, France,
Guangdong, Shenzhen, Japan, South Korea and the UK adjust their minimum wage
rates annually. For Taiwan and the US, such adjustment is done on an irregular
basis.
11.5.6
In Taiwan, the minimum wage rate was not adjusted between
September 1997 and June 2007. In July 2007, the government raised the minimum
wage by 9.1%. Similarly in the US, the federal minimum wage rate was not adjusted
for almost 10 years. In July 2007, the government raised the rate by 13.6% and
legislated to further raise the rate by 12% in 2008 and 10.7% in 2009 respectively.
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11.6
Minimum wage system in selected places
Enforcement and penalty
11.6.1
Australia is the only place studied where an independent statutory agency
is responsible for the enforcement of the minimum wage system. In all the other
selected places, such responsibility falls onto a government authority on labour
matters. In practice, labour inspectors in all the places studied are empowered to
enter workplaces, demand presentation of accounting books and documents, inspect
work articles and question workplace compliance.
11.6.2
The financial penalties for failing to pay the minimum wage and making a
false report to the enforcement agency vary in this research. In South Korea and the
US, conviction of failing to pay the minimum wage may result in imprisonment.
11.7
Empirical studies on the minimum wage system
11.7.1
The findings of the empirical studies surveyed showed that there was no
consensus on the precise impact of the minimum wage system on the economy. In
Guangdong and Shenzhen, the empirical studies revealed that the minimum wage
system played the role of a safety net by offering minimum acceptable protection for
workers and ensuring a minimum standard of living for them and their families.
11.7.2
In France, a study indicated that the minimum wage might have positive
effect on the development of consumer demand and employment. Another study
showed that the wage subsidies provided by the French government created new jobs
in the low-paid sector at the expense of the government and had adverse effects on
productivity growth with companies having reduced pressure to innovate.
11.7.3
In Taiwan, the UK and the US, empirical studies showed that the minimum
wage system did not have any significant adverse effects on employment, inflation
and competitiveness of the economy. In the UK, studies found that the introduction
of minimum wage had no significant effects on the employment for men, women,
adults or young workers, the aggregate number of hours worked in the economy, or
the number of second job holding. In the US, recent studies seemed to suggest that
raising minimum wage had minor negative effects at worst, and that a higher
minimum wage did not do much to relieve poverty.
11.7.4
On the other hand, in Australia, studies showed that excessive minimum
wage increases had a negative impact on employment, especially for the restaurant
and catering industry. Such increases could lead to job loss and erosion of
profitability. In Japan, an empirical study revealed that minimum wage increases
had certain negative impact on female employment.
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Minimum wage system in selected places
Table 6 – Overall comparison of the minimum wage system in selected places
Australia
France
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Japan
South Korea
Taiwan
The United Kingdom
The United States
Singapore
Introduction of the current minimum wage system
Year of
establishing
the current
minimum
wage system
1907.
1950.
1994.
1959.
1988.
1984.
1999.
1938.
Not applicable.
Legislation
for
establishing
the current
minimum
wage system
Conciliation and
Arbitration Act.
Minimum Wage Law.
Minimum Wages Regulations.
Minimum Wage Law.
Minimum Wage Act.
Labour Standards Act.
National Minimum
Wage Act.
Fair Labor Standards
Act.
Not applicable.
Coverage of the minimum wage system
Eligibility of
minimum
wage
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
workers who are not
covered under the
Workplace Relations
Act 1996.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
trainees, apprentices
and prisoners.
The minimum wage system applies to most
workers, excluding domestic workers.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
trainees.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
domestic workers.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
fishermen.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
persons such as
nannies, trainees,
fishermen and
prisoners.
The minimum wage
system applies to most
workers, excluding
persons such as
professionals and
fishermen.
Not applicable.
Whether the
minimum
wage system
covers
disabled
employees
Yes, a disabled
employee is assessed
for his or her
productive capacity
and receives wages
corresponding to a
percentage of the
federal minimum wage
rate.
No.
No.
Yes, a disabled
employee who can
perform the job duties
is entitled to receive
the minimum wage
rate.
No.
Yes, a disabled
employee is assessed
for his or her
productive capacity
and receives wages
corresponding to a
percentage of the
minimum wage rate.
Yes, if a disabled
employee is
categorized as a
"worker", he or she
must be paid the
minimum wage rate.
Yes, a disabled
employee is assessed
for his or her
productive capacity
and receives wages
corresponding to a
percentage of the
federal minimum wage
rate.
Not applicable.
Research and Library Services Division
page 68
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
Table 6 – Overall comparison of the minimum wage system in selected places (cont'd)
Australia
France
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Japan
South Korea
Taiwan
The United Kingdom
The United States
Singapore
Minimum wage rate and characteristics of minimum wage workers
In 2007-2008, hourly
national prefectural
minimum wage rate:
HK$45.0.
Hourly national
industrial minimum
wage rate: HK$51.2.
In 2008, hourly
minimum wage rate:
HK$30.5.
HK$27.5 for workers
on probation.
HK$24.4 for security
guards and caretakers.
In 2007-2008, hourly
minimum wage rate:
HK$23.5.
HK$16.4 for
apprentices.
In 2007, hourly
minimum wage rate:
HK$79.1.
HK$65.9 for workers
aged 18 to 21.
HK$48.7 for workers
aged 16 to 17.
No.
No.
No.
Appreciated between
2002 and 2005.
Under law, the
percentage increase of
the minimum wage
rate cannot be lower
than the inflation rate.
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage: 47% (in 2005).
Has been appreciating since 2000.
Has been appreciating
since 2000.
Has been appreciating
since 2000.
Yes, major relief
measures included:
(a) providing
financial
subsidies to
employers; and
(b) reimbursing up to
80% of the cost
of employee
training.
Depreciated between
1997 and 2007.
Minimum wage relative to the average wage:
about 30% (in 2007).
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage: 28% (in 2007).
About 2.5 million
minimum wage
workers (16.8% of the
labour force).
About 44% of the
minimum wage
workers employed in
domestic work, 32% in
agriculture.
About 23 million
minimum wage
workers.
More than 4.3 million
minimum wage
workers.
Average prefectural
minimum wage
relative to the average
wage of manufacturing
workers: 32% (in
2007).
Small number of
minimum wage
workers.
Mainly rural migrant
workers; most of them
are young female
workers who work in
labour-intensive
industries such as toys,
garments, plastics and
electrical appliances.
Mainly young female
workers who come
from inland provinces;
employed in
labour-intensive
industries such as toys,
garments, plastics and
electrical appliances.
About 2.1 million
minimum wage
workers (13.8% of the
labour force).
Mainly middle-aged
and elderly female
workers who are
engaged in the
manufacturing and
retail sectors.
Hourly
minimum
wage rate
In 2007, hourly
minimum wage rate:
HK$80.4.
A percentage of the
hourly minimum wage
rate for junior
employees, trainees
and apprentices.
In 2007, hourly
minimum wage rate:
HK$82.5.
A percentage of the
hourly minimum wage
rate for young workers
and apprentices.
In 2008-2009, five
monthly minimum
wage rates which range
between HK$541 and
HK$877.
Five hourly minimum
wage rates which range
between HK$5.2 and
HK$8.5.
Whether relief
measures are
implemented
No.
Yes, companies are
eligible for exemption
in social security
contribution.
Real value of
the minimum
wage rate
Has been appreciating
since 1997, except for
year 2001.
Minimum
wage relative
to the average
wage
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage of manufacturing
workers: 48% in
(2005).
Number of
minimum
wage workers
101 500 minimum
wage workers.
Characteristics
of minimum
wage workers
Mainly young workers
without post-school
qualifications and
engaging in part-time
casual jobs in the retail
and hospitality sectors.
Research and Library Services Division
In 2007-2008, two
monthly minimum
wage rates: HK$765
and HK$867.
Two hourly minimum
wage rates: HK$4.4
and HK$5.0.
Mainly elderly female
workers employed in
small-sized companies.
Not applicable.
No.
Higher of the federal
minimum wage rate
and the state minimum
wage rate:
(a) in 2007, federal
hourly minimum
wage rate:
HK$45.4; and
(b) state hourly
minimum wage
rate ranges
between
HK$45.4 and
HK$61.6.
For youth employees,
HK$33.0.
For students, a
percentage of the
federal minimum wage
rate.
No.
Has been appreciating
since 2001.
Depreciated between
1979 and 2006.
Not applicable.
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage of manufacturing
workers: 42% (in
2007).
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage: 35% (in 2005).
Minimum wage
relative to the average
wage: about 31% (in
2006).
Not applicable.
About 1.4 million
minimum wage
workers (13.3% of the
labour force).
About 65% of the
minimum wage
workers are women
who are mainly in the
age groups of 16 to 20,
and 55 or above;
employed in food and
beverages, and retail
businesses.
About 1.3 million
minimum wage
workers (5.1% of the
labour force).
About 66% of the
minimum wage
workers are women
and 60% of the
minimum wage jobs
are part-time in nature.
About 1.7 million
minimum wage
workers.
Not applicable.
Mainly young workers
who are employed in
service occupations,
mostly food
preparation and service
jobs.
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
page 69
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
Table 6 – Overall comparison of the minimum wage system in selected places (cont'd)
Australia
France
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Japan
South Korea
Taiwan
The United Kingdom
The United States
Singapore
Process of determining the minimum wage rate
Authority for
determining
the minimum
wage rate
Australian Fair Pay
Commission.
Advisory
body
None.
National Collective
Bargaining
Commission.
Membership
of the
advisory body
Not applicable.
Criteria for
determining
the minimum
wage rate
Local trade unions, enterprise unions and
entrepreneur associations, but no single advisory
body.
Prefectural minimum
wage council.
Minimum Wage
Council.
Basic Wage
Deliberation
Committee.
Low Pay Commission.
None.
Not applicable.
40 members: four from
the government,
18 from five national
labour unions and
18 from employer
associations.
Information not available.
15 – 20 members who
come from the
government, employer
associations, labour
unions, academic
institutions and social
welfare organizations.
27 members: nine
employer association
representatives, nine
labour union
representatives and
nine independent
members representing
the public interests.
17 – 23 members who
come from the
government, employer
associations, labour
unions, academic and
business research
fields.
Nine members who
come from employer
associations, labour
unions and the
academic field.
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
Four criteria:
Four criteria:
Seven criteria:
Four criteria:
Seven criteria:
Six criteria:
Six criteria:
Three criteria:
Not applicable.
(a)
cost of living;
(a)
needs of workers;
(a)
(a)
cost of living;
(a)
cost of living;
(a)
cost of living;
(b)
wages of
comparable
workers;
(b)
(b)
average wage of workers;
economic growth
rate;
(b)
(b)
consumer price
index;
economic
conditions;
(a)
consumer price
index;
current economic
performance;
(a)
(b)
minimum living standards of employees and
their dependants;
(b)
(b)
pay differentials;
(c)
current economic situation;
(c)
(c)
business costs;
labour productivity;
average wage
level;
(c)
(d)
local employment situation;
(d)
labour
productivity;
competitiveness
of economy;
(c)
(e)
(d)
(f)
amount of social security benefits; and
wages of
comparable
workers.
employment
situation;
productivity and
wages of
comparable
workers; and
(d)
economic
performance; and
consumer price
index;
labour
productivity;
(e)
inflation rate; and
(f)
employment
level.
ability of
employers to
absorb wage
increases.
(d)
economic
performance; and
wages of
comparable
workers.
(c)
inflation rate; and
(d)
economic
performance.
(g)
Shenzhen Labour and
Social Security
Bureau.
Congress determining
the federal minimum
wage rate.
Minister of Labour.
(c)
Guangdong Bureau of
Labour and Social
Security.
Council of Labour
Affairs of the
Executive Yuan.
Prefectural labour
bureau determining
both the prefectural
and industrial
minimum wages.
Council of Ministers.
(c)
(d)
differences in the level of economic
development within the region.
Parliament.
Not applicable.
Individual state
legislatures setting
their own minimum
wage rates.
(e)
employment rate;
(f)
consumer price
index; and
(g)
income
distribution.
(e)
workers' wages in
different
industries; and
(f)
survey and
statistical figures
on household
income and
expenditures.
Procedures
for
determining
the minimum
wage rate
The Commission
conducts an annual
minimum wage review.
The minimum wage
rate is adjusted in
accordance with
changes of the national
price index every July.
During the interim
period, if the nation
price index changes by
2% or more, the
minimum wage rate
will be adjusted
automatically.
The provincial labour and social security
authorities may adjust the minimum wage rate.
The revised minimum wage rate, if any, will be
provided to the Ministry of Labour and Social
Security for record purpose.
The prefectural
minimum wage
council recommends
the adjusted prefectural
and industrial
minimum wages for
the prefectural labour
bureau for approval.
The Minimum Wage
Council proposes an
adjusted rate to the
Minister of Labour for
approval.
The Basic Wage
Deliberation
Committee submits the
adjusted basic wage to
the Council of Labour
Affairs for final
approval.
The government
determines the
minimum wage rates
with the advice of the
Low Pay Commission,
subject to Parliament's
approval.
The federal minimum
wage rate is adjusted
by legislation and any
Congressman can
introduce a bill to
effect an adjustment.
Not applicable.
Frequency of
adjustment
Annual basis.
Annual basis.
Annual basis.
Annual basis.
Annual basis.
Irregular adjustment.
Annual basis.
Irregular adjustment.
Not applicable.
Research and Library Services Division
page 70
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
Table 6 – Overall comparison of the minimum wage system in selected places (cont'd)
Australia
France
Guangdong
Shenzhen
Japan
South Korea
Taiwan
The United Kingdom
The United States
Singapore
Enforcement and penalty
Prefectural labour
bureau.
Ministry of Labour.
Council of Labour
Affairs.
Her Majesty's Revenue
and Customs.
Department of Labor.
Not applicable.
Between HK$5,100 and HK$51,000.
Not exceeding
HK$1,338 per worker.
Not exceeding
HK$162,000 or
imprisonment for not
more than three years,
or both.
Between HK$484 and
HK$4,840.
Not exceeding
HK$71,650.
Not exceeding
HK$85,448; with a
second penalty
possibly resulting in
imprisonment.
Not applicable.
Information not available.
Not exceeding
HK$669 per worker.
Not exceeding
HK$81,600.
Between HK$2,420
and HK$12,100.
Information not
available.
Information not
available.
Not applicable.
Enforcement
agency
Office of the
Workplace
Ombudsman.
Ministry of Labour,
Labour Relations and
Solidarity.
Guangdong Bureau of
Labour and Social
Security.
Penalty for
failing to pay
the minimum
wage rate
For individuals, not
exceeding HK$38,580;
for corporations, not
exceeding
HK$192,900.
Standard penalty of
HK$14,655.
Penalty for
making a false
report to the
enforcement
agency
Information not
available.
Information not
available.
Research and Library Services Division
Shenzhen Bureau of
Labour and Social
Security.
page 71
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
Table 7 –Major findings of empirical studies on the minimum wage system
Australia
Major findings of empirical studies submitted to the Australian Fair Pay Commission's 2007 Minimum Wage Review revealed that:
(a) minimum wage increases could exacerbate unemployment; and
(b) excessive minimum wage increases had a negative impact on employment.
France
Major findings of empirical studies revealed that:
(a) the minimum wage system brought the benefits of:
(i)
curbing the competitive downward pressure on wages; and
(ii) favouring corporate strategies aiming at boosting productivity; and
(b) the wage subsidies:
(i)
created new jobs in the low-paid sector;
(ii) directly affected the government's budget; and
(iii) had adverse effects on productivity growth with companies having reduced pressure to innovate.
Guangdong
Major findings of the empirical study entitled Wages and social security – An investigation into Guangdong minimum wages and research on the statistical estimate mode (2006) revealed that:
(a) the minimum wage system brought the benefits of:
(i)
playing the role of a safety net by offering minimum acceptable protection for workers and ensuring a minimum standard of living for them and their families;
(ii) narrowing the income gap between the rich and the poor to reduce social tensions and promote harmonious socio-economic development; and
(iii) compelling employers to restructure their businesses to enhance technical efficiency, raise labour productivity and promote the development of high-value added products; and
(b) the minimum wage system did not have any significant impact on the competitiveness of the enterprises studied and their export performance.
Shenzhen
Major findings of an internal empirical study conducted in 2006 revealed that:
(a) the minimum wage system brought the benefits of:
(i)
guaranteeing workers to have an acceptable minimum standard of living;
(ii) preventing employers from exploiting low-skilled workers;
(iii) increasing consumer purchasing power, through raising the incomes of low-wage workers;
(iv) reducing the tensions between employers and employees; and
(v) narrowing the income gap between the rich and the poor to reduce social tensions and promote harmonious socio-economic development.
Japan
Major finding of the empirical study entitled The impact of the minimum wage on female employment in Japan (2007) revealed that:
(a) the minimum wage adjustment had certain negative impact on female employment.
South Korea
Taiwan
Information not available.
Major findings of the empirical study entitled The Effects of Basic Wage on the Labour Market in Taiwan (2001) revealed that:
(a) the minimum wage system did not have any significant adverse effects on employment, inflation and competitiveness of the economy; and
(b) there was no statistical evidence showing that the minimum wage exerted any negative impact on the employment level of low-wage workers and youths.
The United Kingdom
Major findings of empirical studies revealed that:
(a) there was no significant effect of the introduction of minimum wage or its increases on employment for men, women, adults or young workers;
(b) the introduction of minimum wage did not have much impact on the aggregate number of hours worked in the economy; and
(c) the introduction of minimum wage had neither caused individuals to give up their second jobs nor encouraged more people to take additional jobs.
The United States
Major findings of empirical studies revealed that:
(a) raising minimum wages had minor negative effects; and
(b) a higher minimum wage did not relieve poverty.
Singapore
Information on a proposed minimum wage system is not available.
Research and Library Services Division
page 72
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
Appendix I
Impact of the introduction of a statutory 35-hour working week
on the minimum wage system
A.I.1
In the late 1990s, there were discussions in France on whether the
government should reduce the statutory weekly working hours to raise the incomes of
workers66 and increase the employment level67. After deliberation in Parliament, in
June 1998, France passed a law (i.e. the Aubry Act) reducing the statutory working
week from 39 hours to 35 hours. The Aubry Act was implemented in two phases:
(a) companies having more than 20 employees would implement the
35-hour working week after 1 February 2000; and
(b) companies having fewer than 20 employees and the government
would adopt the 35-hour working week after 1 January 2002.
A.I.2
At the time, the government took the view that the monthly incomes of
some low-paid workers might fall because of the reduced statutory weekly working
hours. Hence, in addition to the hourly SMIC68, the government set two "guaranteed
monthly wage" rates for workers who worked 35 hours a week and 39 hours a week
respectively to maintain their pay levels69.
A.I.3
In view of the wage rates, many employers raised the concerns that:
(a) the minimum wage system was complicated as there were different
rates in effect; and
(b) the costs of running businesses in France were subsequently higher.
A.I.4
Under such circumstances, the government agreed to re-use a single hourly
SMIC rate from July 2002 onwards.
66
67
68
69
Hours worked in excess of statutory working hours are counted as overtime. Every hour of
overtime is payable at 10% – 50% higher than the normal hourly rate, depending on the
cumulative total overtime hours worked.
The rationale was that companies might employ more people to share the jobs.
The hourly SMIC rate was applied to part-time workers and full-time workers who worked
overtime.
When workers switched to the 35-hour week, employees on SMIC were paid the wage that they
would have received if they worked 39 hours.
Research and Library Services Division
page 73
Legislative Council Secretariat
Minimum wage system in selected places
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Legislative Council Secretariat
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SUMBER:
ELEKTRONIK
ARKIB : 15/02/2011
Gaji minimum: Tiada diskriminasi pekerja asing
Oleh SHARAIMEI SHAIK AHMEDULLAH
PUTRAJAYA 14 Feb. - Kerajaan tidak akan mendiskriminasi pekerja asing yang bekerja
di negara ini jika kadar gaji minimum dikaji semula dalam semua sektor kerajaan dan
swasta.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr S. Subramaniam berkata, kerajaan sedang dalam
peringkat kajian untuk menetapkan jumlah yang bersesuaian bagi gaji minimun untuk
semua sektor tersebut.
Menurutnya, apabila langkah itu dilaksanakan, kerajaan akan turut menetapkan jumlah
gaji minimum bagi pekerja asing.
"Kita telah kumpulkan data daripada beberapa agensi kerajaan macam Jabatan
Statistik, Kementerian Kewangan, ekonomi dan sebagainya dan sekarang kita
mempunyai maklumat yang lengkap dari segi pandangan beberapa sektor dengan
butiran yang perlu supaya kerajaan boleh menghasilkan satu keputusan dalam hal ini.
"Dan sebagai dasar, kita memutuskan untuk mengadakan gaji minimum melalui
cadangan yang akan merangkumi semua orang termasuk pekerja-pekerja asing,"
katanya.
Beliau berkata demikian ketika berucap pada Seminar Makmal Gaji Minimum di Pusat
Konvensyen Antarabangsa Putrajaya (PICC) di sini.
Persidangan yang disertai ahli akademik dan pertubuhan bukan kerajaan (NGO) itu turut
dihadiri ahli-ahli parlimen, wakil kerajaan negeri serta ahli-ahli exco kerajaan negeri yang
bertujuan untuk mendapatkan pandangan menyeluruh mengenai gaji minimum di
Malaysia.
Sehubungan itu, Subramaniam berkata, kerajaan akan menubuhkan Akta Majlis
Konsultasi Gaji Kebangsaan bagi menggantikan Akta Majlis Penetapan Gaji 1947 yang
berperanan mengkaji isu gaji minimum dalam negara.
"Selepas ini kita akan menghalusi draf akta tersebut supaya ia boleh dibentangkan pada
sidang Parlimen akan datang.
"Kita akan mengambil kira segala pandangan yang dibuat dalam satu minggu ini untuk
tetapkan apakah fungsi, skop dan cara manakah majlis ini menghadapi isu gaji minimum
di dalam negara kita," katanya.
Kajian Kementerian Sumber Manusia pada 2009 menunjukkan masih terdapat 439,400
daripada 1.3 juta pekerja di negara ini masih menerima gaji di bawah RM700 sebulan.
1
Jumlah yang sangat rendah diperoleh hampir 33.8 peratus pekerja itu menyebabkan
mereka hidup di paras kemiskinan memandangkan garis kemiskinan yang ditetapkan
oleh kerajaan adalah RM720.
2
ARKIB : 14/02/2011
Pekerja asing terima gaji minimum seperti pekerja tempatan
14/02/2011 3:27pm
PUTRAJAYA, 14 Feb. - Pekerja asing akan menikmati kadar gaji minimum seperti
pekerja tempatan sekiranya dasar gaji minimum untuk pekerja sektor swasta di negara
ini dilaksanakan kelak, kata Menteri Sumber Manusia Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam.
Beliau berkata, setakat ini kerajaan menetapkan bahawa pembayaran gaji adalah
berdasarkan kuasa pasaran sehinggalah keputusan muktamad mengenai pelaksanaan
gaji minimum itu diputuskan kerajaan.
Bercakap kepada pemberita selepas majlis penutupan Makmal Gaji Minimum di sini hari
ini, Subramaniam berkata, sebarang permintaan untuk melaksanakan pemberian gaji
minimum kepada pekerja asing pada masa ini tidak boleh dipenuhi kerana Malaysia
tidak mempunyai struktur gaji minimum untuk pekerja tempatan.
"Apabila tiada kadar gaji minimum untuk pekerja tempatan jadi sebagai kerajaan kita
tidak benarkan gaji minimum untuk pekerja asing,” katanya mengulas pertanyaan media
Indonesia kerana kerajaan tidak menetapkan kadar gaji minimum untuk pembantu
rumah warganegara itu.
Subramaniam berkata, ketika ini pekerja asing menerima upah yang sama dengan
pekerja tempatan terutamanya dalam sektor perladangan. – Bernama
3
ARKIB : 10/02/2011
Undang-undang konsultasi gaji diperkenal
10/02/2011 1:23pm
PURAJAYA 10 Feb. - Kementerian Sumber Manusia akan membentangkan Rang
Undang-undang Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Kebangsaan bagi menggantikan Akta Majlis
Penetapan Gaji 1947, pada sesi Parlimen sebelum Jun ini, kata menteri berkenaan,
Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam.
Katanya, rang undang-undang itu bertujuan menyelaraskan dan menetapkan gaji
minimum pekerja sektor swasta di negara ini dan mewujudkan majlis untuk menentukan
kadar gaji minimum berpatutan kepada pekerja mengikut setiap sektor dan kawasannya.
"Akta ini akan memberi kuasa kepada kementerian dan majlis untuk membuat apa yang
perlu bagi menetapkan dan menyelaraskan gaji di negara ini,” katanya pada sidang
akhbar selepas meninjau Makmal Gaji Minimum, di sini hari ini. - Bernama
4
ARKIB : 07/02/2011
CUEPACS mahu kerajaan wujudkan gaji minimum penjawat awam
07/02/2011 6:29pm
KUALA LUMPUR 7 Feb. - CUEPACS hari ini meminta kerajaan menetapkan gaji
minimum bagi penjawat awam supaya mereka dapat menampung kos kehidupan yang
semakin tinggi.
Presidennya Datuk Omar Osman berkata, pada masa ini, gaji yang diterima penjawat
awam terutama kumpulan sokongan, masih lagi berada di bawah garis kemiskinan
RM720 sebulan.
"Contohnya bagi Gred 1 hingga Gred 16 dalam Kumpulan Sokongan II, permulaan gaji
RM647, bawah paras gaji kemiskinan. Sekarang paling tidak mesti RM850 atau RM920,
dan ini tak termasuk elaun, hanya gaji pokok.
"Kakitangan kerajaan sekarang ni, kalau ikut betul-betul gaji, memang belum sampai gaji
minimum. Tapi disebabkan tambah elaun, maka sampai (paras gaji minimum),” katanya
kepada pemberita selepas Bengkel Pemantapan Disiplin dan Integriti Kesatuan Pegawai
Pengangkutan Jalan Semenanjung Malaysia di sini, hari ini.
Beliau berkata gaji yang rendah boleh mengakibatkan produktiviti pekerja terjejas
terutamanya apabila mereka melakukan pekerjaan sambilan. - Bernama
5
ARKIB : 12/01/2011
Pengawal terima gaji baru akhir bulan ini
12/01/2011 2:33pm
KUALA LUMPUR, 12 Jan. - Lebih daripada 100,000 pengawal keselamatan di negara ini
dijangka menerima gaji minimum RM700 pada hujung bulan ini.
Ketua Pengarah Jabatan Tenaga Kerja Datuk Sheikh Yahya Sheikh Mohammed
berkata, kerajaan tidak berganjak daripada keputusan bahawa pelaksanaan gaji
minimum itu adalah pada 1 Januari lepas.
Jika ada pengawal keselamatan tidak menerima gaji baru pada 31 Januari ini, mereka
harus bertanya kepada majikan dan membuat laporan kepada Pejabat Tenaga Kerja
berhampiran sekiranya masih tidak ada perubahan selepas itu, katanya di sini hari ini.
Sheikh Yahya berkata, jabatan itu telah berjumpa dengan Persatuan Perkhidmatan
Kawalan Keselamatan Malaysia bagi menjelaskan keputusan kerajaan tersebut.
Sementara itu, Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) menyambut baik keputusan
kerajaan tersebut yang seiring dengan salah satu resolusi yang dibuat mereka pada
persidangan bulan lepas. – Bernama
6
ARKIB : 14/10/2010
Akta baru digubal laksana gaji pekerja
KUALA LUMPUR 13 Okt. - Isu gaji minimum pekerja akan dibincangkan pada
mesyuarat Kabinet Jumaat ini sementara satu akta baru bakal digubal bagi
menggantikan Akta Majlis Penetapan Gaji 1947 pada tahun depan.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam berkata, penetapan gaji minimum
melalui akta sedia ada akan mengambil masa lama dan proses yang rumit di samping
tidak menyeluruh, mengikut jenis pekerjaan dan subsektor tertentu.
''Oleh yang demikian kementerian dengan kerjasama Jabatan Peguam Negara akan
menggubal satu akta baru mengenai gaji minimum pada tahun depan,'' katanya pada
sidang akhbar di sini hari ini.
Jika dilihat dari sudut kebangsaan katanya, ia akan melibatkan semua sektor dan
kemungkinan kadar gaji berbeza antara satu tempat dengan tempat lain mengikut kos
hidup di kawasan berkenaan.
Beliau menambah, jika keputusan penetapan gaji minimum mengikut sektor, kerajaan
akan melihat semua sektor sementara sistem pelaksanaannya hanya akan ditetapkan
setelah kajian mendalam dibuat.
"Untuk jangka masa panjang, kerajaan ingin menetapkan gaji yang sesuai untuk pekerja
tetapi buat masa ini tidak mahu membuat apa-apa yang boleh menjejaskan keupayaan
negara dalam menarik pelabur asing ke negara ini," katanya.
Beliau berkata demikian selepas berucap merasmikan Forum Gaji Minimum anjuran
Pemuda Barisan Nasional (BN) dan Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC).
Turut hadir pada majlis itu ialah Timbalan Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Maznah
Mazlan; Pengerusi Pemuda BN, Khairy Jamaluddin yang juga Ketua Pemuda UMNO
dan timbalannya Datuk Razali Ibrahim serta Timbalan Presiden MTUC, Mohd. Khalid
Atan.
Subramaniam juga berkata, kerajaan bersikap terbuka dalam perkara itu di samping
melihatnya dari semua sudut.
Isu gaji minimum pekerja, tegas beliau, tidak boleh dilihat secara emosional dan berbaur
politik.
"Dalam apa juga keputusan yang diambil, ia perlu mengambil kira kepentingan negara,"
ujarnya.
Gaji minimum jika dilaksanakan katanya, juga akan melibatkan pekerja asing kerana
mengikut perundangan antarabangsa, tiada diskriminasi antara pekerja tempatan dan
asing di bawah satu majikan.
7
ARKIB : 14/10/2010
Lima resolusi jayakan dasar gaji minimum
Oleh SYUKRI SHAARI
[email protected]
KUALA LUMPUR 13 Okt. - Kesatuan
sekerja daripada pelbagai sektor
bersetuju sekiranya paras gaji minimum
ditetapkan pada kadar RM900 dengan
pemberian elaun RM300 kepada para
pekerja di negara ini.
Persetujuan itu merupakan salah satu
daripada lima resolusi Forum Gaji
Minimum anjuran Pergerakan Pemuda
Barisan Nasional (BN) dengan
kerjasama Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja
Malaysia (MTUC) di sini hari ini.
Empat lagi resolusi yang dihasilkan
daripada forum tersebut adalah:
Dr. S. Subramaniam (tengah) mendengar
pertanyaan Khairy Jamaluddin selepas
merasmikan Forum Gaji Minimum anjuran
bersama Pemuda BN dan MTUC di Kuala
Lumpur, semalam. Turut memerhati Timbalan
Presiden MTUC, Mohd. Khalid Atan (kanan). Bernama
n Semua pihak bersetuju dan tiada
keraguan dengan pelaksanaan gaji minimum.
n Pelaksanaan gaji minimum perlu dipertimbangkan sama ada mengikut sektor atau
kawasan iaitu Semenanjung Malaysia, Sabah dan Sarawak.
n Tidak bersetuju jika penetapan gaji minimum adalah berdasarkan pada faktor
produktiviti sebaliknya faktor itu digunakan untuk menentukan kadar kenaikan gaji yang
seterusnya.
n Perlu diwujudkan satu perjanjian antara pihak kerajaan, majikan dan pekerja bagi
membina hubungan pekerjaan yang harmoni.
Pengerusi Pemuda BN, Khairy Jamaluddin berkata, resolusi-resolusi tersebut akan
dibawa ke peringkat Kementerian Sumber Manusia untuk dibincangkan.
"Perkara-perkara itu merupakan apa yang terkandung dalam resolusi yang telah dikenal
pasti menerusi forum yang telah kami anjurkan dan ia suara daripada kesatuan sekerja
serta pekerja-pekerja pelbagai sektor yang berharap perkara itu dapat dilaksanakan.
"Kami akan cuba sedaya upaya membawa perkara ini untuk dibincangkan kepada pihak
Kementerian Sumber Manusia agar dasar gaji minimum ini benar-benar direalisasikan
mengikut kehendak pekerja di Malaysia," katanya semasa merumuskan hasil
perbincangan forum tersebut.
8
Pada forum itu, lima orang panel telah dijemput berbincang serta bertukar-tukar
pendapat berhubung isu gaji minimum selain menjawab pertanyaan berkaitan isu itu
daripada kesatuan sekerja pelbagai sektor yang hadir.
Selain Khairy sendiri sebagai ahli panel forum, ahli panel lain ialah Setiausaha Agung
MTUC, G. Rajasekaran; Ahli Persekutuan Pengilang-Pengilang Malaysia (FMM), Sarita
Beram Shah; Pengurus Besar Kanan Perbadanan Produktiviti Negara; Shahuren Ismail
serta Dekan Sekolah Perdana Polisi, Sains dan Inovasi Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
(UTM), Prof. Dr. Durrishah Idrus.
Menurut Khairy, pelaksanaan gaji minimum secara menyeluruh yang melibatkan pekerja
asing juga akan diberi perhatian.
Katanya, jika pekerja asing tiada penetapan gaji minimum, ia akan membolehkan
majikan mendapatkan tenaga kerja lebih murah dari luar negara mengakibatkan berlaku
lambakan pekerja asing di dalam negara.
Sementara itu, Khairy berkata, Pemuda BN juga akan mengemukakan isu berhubung
pemberian pencen minimum oleh syarikat milik kerajaan (GLC) kepada Kementerian
Sumber Manusia kerana mendapati kadar pencen yang diberi kepada bekas pekerjanya
sangat rendah jika dibandingkan dengan sektor lain.
9
ARKIB : 13/10/2010
Akta Majlis Penetapan Gaji 1974 akan diganti
13/10/2010 2:48pm
KUALA LUMPUR 13 Okt. - Satu akta baru akan digubal bagi menggantikan Akta Majlis
Penetapan Gaji 1974 yang didapati kurang sesuai untuk diaplikasikan dalam
menetapkan gaji minimum ketika ini.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam berkata, perincian asas
berhubung penggubalan akta baru yang dijangka dibentangkan di Parlimen Mac tahun
depan itu akan dibincangkan pada mesyuarat Kabinet Jumaat ini.
"Penetapan gaji minimum melalui akta sedia ada mengambil masa yang lama serta
rumit malah ia juga tidak menyeluruh kerana pendekatannya adalah mengikut jenis
pekerjaan dan subsektor tertentu.
"Dalam melaksanakan dasar gaji minimum kebangsaan, ia memerlukan
penguatkuasaan undang-undang. Jadi, dicadangkan satu akta baru digubal bagi
menggantikan akta sedia ada,” katanya pada sidang media selepas merasmikan Forum
Gaji Minimum anjuran Pemuda Barisan Nasional (Pemuda BN) bersama-sama dengan
Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) di sini, hari ini.
Hadir sama timbalannya, Datuk Maznah Mazlan; Pengerusi Pemuda, BN Khairy
Jamalauddin dan Timbalan Presiden MTUC Khalid Atan. - Bernama
10
ARKIB : 12/10/2010
Pemuda BN, MTUC anjur forum gaji minimum
KUALA LUMPUR 11 Okt. – Pemuda Barisan Nasional (BN) dengan kerjasama Kongres
Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) akan menganjurkan Forum Gaji Minimum, di Hotel
Putra, Jalan Tun Razak di sini Rabu ini mulai pukul 8.30 pagi.
Pengerusi Sekretariat Pekerja Mudanya, Nazir Hussin Akhtar Hussin (gambar) berkata,
idea penganjuran forum itu hasil perbincangan bersama wakil daripada dua kesatuan
sekerja iaitu MTUC dan Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja-Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam
(CUEPACS) pada 24 Ogos lalu serta maklum balas yang diterima melalui Makmal
Pemuda BN.
“Isu gaji minimum adalah amat penting kepada seluruh warga pekerja di Malaysia
terutama bagi membantu mereka menghadapi kos sara hidup dan inflasi yang semakin
meningkat di samping memastikan kebajikan pekerja-pekerja tempatan di negara ini
terbela dengan kadar gaji yang setimpal.
“Keperluan ini dilihat semakin meruncing apabila 34 peratus daripada kumpulan pekerja
di Malaysia berpendapatan kurang daripada RM700 sebulan iaitu lebih rendah daripada
Pendapatan Garis Kemiskinan Semenanjung (PGK) sebanyak RM720 sebulan,” katanya
dalam satu kenyataan di sini hari ini.
Nazir Hussin berkata, isu gaji minimum itu juga menjadi semakin relevan ekoran usaha
kerajaan mentransformasikan hala tuju serta merancakkan aktiviti ekonomi negara ke
arah ekonomi berpendapatan tinggi.
Oleh itu, beliau menjemput para pekerja serta ahli-ahli kesatuan sekerja menghadiri
forum tersebut yang akan dirasmikan oleh Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S.
Subramaniam.
Menurutnya, ahli panel yang akan terlibat ialah Pengerusi Pemuda BN, Khairy
Jamaluddin; Setiausaha Agung MTUC, G. Rajasekaran; Ahli Persekutuan PengilangPengilang Malaysia (FMM), Sarita Beram Shah; Pengurus Besar Kanan Perbadanan
Produktiviti Negara, Shahuren Ismail dan Dekan Sekolah Perdana Polisi, Sains dan
Inovasi Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), Prof. Dr. Durrishah Idrus.
“Forum ini bagi membuktikan kesungguhan Pemuda BN membela nasib golongan
pekerja muda tempatan terutama dalam sektor pembuatan, perkilangan dan
perkhidmatan yang rata-rata memperoleh pendapatan bulanan di bawah garis
kemiskinan yang ditetapkan kerajaan,” katanya.
11
ARKIB : 18/10/2010
Sekretariat Pekerja Muda tawar diri sertai konsultasi gaji negara
KUALA LUMPUR 17 Okt. - Sekretariat Pekerja Muda, Pergerakan Pemuda UMNO
menawarkan diri untuk menyertai Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara dalam memperhalusi
segala kaedah yang akan digunapakai bagi merealisasikan pelaksanaan gaji minimum.
Selain itu, Pengerusinya, Nazir Hussin Akhtar Hussin berkata, pergerakan tersebut juga
mengharapkan usaha dan inisiatif dalam merangka pelaksanaan gaji minimum melalui
majlis berkenaan turut dianggotai oleh majikan, kesatuan sekerja, kumpulan pekerja
tanpa persatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, badan bukan kerajaan dan individu.
''Penubuhan majlis ini menunjukkan keprihatinan kerajaan terhadap suara golongan
muda yang mana Sekretariat Pekerja Muda sendiri sebelum ini telah banyak kali
mengadakan forum, perbincangan dan perjumpaan dengan golongan-golongan pekerja
muda terutamanya di dalam sektor pembuatan, perkhidmatan dan industri.
''Antara harapan golongan pekerja muda yang telah sekian lama belum menemui jalan
penyelesaiannya adalah berkenaan pelaksanaan gaji minimum,'' katanya dalam satu
kenyataan, di sini hari ini.
Beliau berkata, hasil usaha Pemuda UMNO dengan kerjasama kongres kesatuan
sekerja telah mendapat perhatian Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak yang
mengumumkan Penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara ketika pembentangan Bajet
2011, Jumaat lalu.
''Pelaksanaan gaji minimum yang boleh membuka peluang dan pasaran kerja yang
meluas dapat mengurangkan kadar pengangguran serta mengurangkan
kebergantungan negara terhadap tenaga kerja warga asing.
''Keterbukaan Perdana Menteri dalam menerima cadangan dan pandangan rakyat ketika
merangka Bajet 2011 amat dihargai selaras dengan Gagasan 1Malaysia 'Rakyat
Didahulukan, Pencapaian Diutamakan','' katanya.
Sehubungan itu, kata Nazir Hussin, rakyat khususnya golongan muda diharap menilai
keikhlasan dan keprihatinan Perdana Menteri dalam mengupayakan golongan
berkenaan dalam semua peringkat bagi mewujudkan modal insan yang berkemahiran
tinggi.
''Kita juga menyarankan agar golongan pekerja muda bijak untuk merebut peluang yang
diberikan oleh kerajaan melalui peruntukan sebanyak RM474 juta bagi program latihan
kemahiran dan RM500 juta untuk pelaksanaan Program Latihan 1Malaysia.
''Mereka perlu menambah serta mempertingkatkan kemahiran terutamanya dalam
bidang-bidang tertentu bagi memenuhi pasaran kerja yang ada di negara ini,'' katanya.
Nazir Hussin juga menyifatkan, fokus dan kesungguhan kerajaan dalam usaha
membantu golongan muda khususnya golongan pekerja muda bukan profesional dalam
12
Bajet 2011 merupakan satu penghormatan kerajaan BN bagi menunjukkan betapa
pentingnya peranan golongan itu yang dianggap tunjang utama pembangunan negara.
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ARKIB : 17/10/2010
Transformasi ke arah negara maju
Oleh Izham Yusoff
BAJET 2011 adalah belanjawan pertama Rancangan Malaysia Ke-10 dan yang kedua
dibentangkan oleh Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak. Di atas sifat itu,
pembentangannya amat dinantikan oleh ramai penganalisis ekonomi kerana ia akan
menetapkan rentak dan nada aktiviti ekonomi negara sejajar dengan visi nasional untuk
menggapai negara maju yang berpendapatan tinggi, berpaksikan kepada prinsip
keterangkuman dan kemapanan sejajar dengan roh Model Ekonomi Baru.
Untuk menjayakan Bajet 2011 yang bertemakan Transformasi Ke Arah Negara Maju
Berpendapatan Tinggi, pihak kerajaan telah menggariskan empat strategi, iaitu
merancak pelaburan swasta; mempergiat pembangunan modal insan; menambah baik
kualiti hidup; dan memperkukuh penyampaian perkhidmatan awam.
Untuk mencapai kadar pertumbuhan enam peratus pada tahun 2011, pelaburan sektor
swasta perlu ditingkatkan semula daripada tahap 10 peratus daripada KDNK yang
dialami dalam tempoh sedekad yang lalu. Namun begitu, pelaburan FDI tidak akan mula
mengalir ke bumi Malaysia sekiranya kita masih miskin dari segi modal insan mahir,
tahap kreativiti dan produktiviti yang rendah serta lemah dalam menyediakan sistem
penyampaian perkhidmatan awam.
Bagi tahun 2011, pihak kerajaan mensasarkan pelaburan swasta akan berkembang
pada kadar 12.5 peratus kepada RM86 bilion. Sebahagian besar daripada jumlah
tersebut membabitkan pembangunan hartanah kerajaan di sekitar Lembah Kelang dan
pelaksanaan MRT untuk Greater KL sebagai penjana utama aktiviti ekonomi negara.
Projek pembangunan hartanah seperti KLIFD [Kuala Lumpur International Financial
District]; pembangunan tanah milik Lembaga Getah Malaysia di Sungai Buloh dan projek
bersepadu Warisan Merdeka mampu menarik pelaburan swasta dari dalam dan luar
negara. Limpahan nikmat ekonomi yang dapat dicapai melalui pembangunan hartanah
yang dilaksanakan seiring dengan penambahbaikan sistem pengangkutan awam sudah
tentu berkali ganda.
Projek projek hartanah dan MRT tidak mungkin dapat dibiayai semata mata dengan
tabungan dalam negara. Oleh itu, adalah dijangka lebih banyak syarikat luar negara
yang akan memainkan peranan penting dalam beberapa projek pembangunan strategik
berimpak tinggi. Sebagai contoh, projek MRT mungkin memerlukan pembiayaan melalui
bon yang memberikan peluang syarikat pelaburan luar negara untuk menumpang
mengecapi pulangan modal yang lumayan kalau dibandingkan dengan tahap
keuntungan modal di negara asal.
Saya menjangka tentu ada suara nakal yang mempersoalkan strategi kerajaan untuk
mencipta pembangunan ekonomi melalui pembangunan hartanah kerajaan. Namun kita
perlu sedar bahawa pembangunan hartanah memberikan limpahan nilai ekonomi yang
berlipat ganda kerana banyak sektor hiliran yang akan turut terlibat dalam rantaian nilai
pembangunan hartanah. Industri pelombongan agregat, simen, pasir, serta berbagai
14
barangan dan perkhidmatan yang terlibat secara lansung atau tidak lansung dengan
pembangunan hartanah akan turut berkembang.
Sememang nya pembangunan hartanah kerajaan sudah lama dibincangkan untuk
dilaksanakan. Perbezaaan-nya kali ini adalah corak pelaksanaan, di mana pihak swasta
diberikan peranan yang lebih meluas untuk membangunkan projek hartanah kerajaan.
Tumpuan turut diberikan kepada usaha merancakkan pasaran modal domestik dengan
memperkenalkan beberapa langkah baru yang sudah sampai masanya untuk
dilaksanakan. Sebagai contoh, Syarikat Pelaburan Berkaitan Kerahaan [GLIC]
disarankan untuk mengurangkan pegangan saham dalam syarikat tersenarai di Bursa
Malaysia dan sebaliknya menggunakan modal yang ada untuk meningkatkan pelaburan
di luar negara. Beberapa syarikat GLIC seperti PNB dan KWSP sudah mula mengorak
langkah menubuhkan syarikat pelaburan di luar negara untuk tujuan tersebut. Namun
kini, pihak kerajaan mahu peningkatan berganda dari segi pelaburan aset di luar negara.
Pengurangan pegangan saham di dalam syarikat tersenarai di Bursa Malaysia
sememangnya dialu-alukan oleh banyak pihak, namun usaha mendapatkan pulangan
yang setimpal atau lebih baik di luar negara mengundang risiko yang perlu diteliti oleh
pihak GLIC. Apabila membuat pelaburan di luar negara beberapa faktor risiko khusus
[contoh: risiko matawang, risiko repatriation of funds, risiko kadar faedah] perlu diberi
perhatian untuk memastikan pulangan atas modal yang dilaburkan adalah setimpal.
Penyenaraian Petronas Chemical Sdn Bhd dan Malaysia Marine and Heavy Engineering
Holdings Sdn Bhd bakal menceriakan aktiviti pasaran di Bursa Malaysia.
Memandangkan kebelakangan ini sudah banyak syarikat yang tersenarai di Bursa
Malaysia yang telah diswastakan, amatlah sesuai bagi kerajaan mengapongkan
beberapa syarikat milik kerajaan di pasaran saham untuk mempelbagaikan saham
pilihan yang secara langsung akan mengundang pelaburan yang lebih inklusif dari dana
tempatan mahu pun luar negara.
Dua inisiatif kerajaan yang perlu diberikan perhatian ialah penubuhan Skim Amanah
Hartanah Bumiputera dan Dana Pencen Swasta. Kedua -dua inisiatif ini pernah disentuh
didalam beberapa bajet yang lalu dan kini sudah sedia untuk dilancarkan pada tahun
2011. Skim Amanah Hartanah Bumiputera adalah satu idea yang baik untuk menambah
penyertaan yang lebih bermakna dan mapan oleh golongan bumiputera dalam sektor
hartanah komersil. Manakala Dana Pencen Swasta akan memberikan pilihan kepada
rakyat bagi melabur tabungan mereka. Sehingga kini, KWSP adalah satu satunya
syarikat yang boleh menerima caruman pekerja untuk tabungan hari tua. Pengenalan
Dana Pencen Swasta adalah langkah proaktif kerajaan supaya tabungan rakyat
diberikan pulangan yang kompetitif oleh KWSP mahupun Dana Pencen Swasta.
Strategi kedua Baget 2011, iaitu membangunkan modal insan amatlah sesuai diberikan
penekanan pada ketika ini. Ini adalah kerana untuk bersaing dengan negara lain bagi
mendapatkan FDI mahupun pelaburan ekuiti, negara kita perlu menyediakan tenaga
kerja yang cekap, celik IT, mahir dalam berbagai bahasa, inovatif dan kreatif.
Menarik
15
Salah satu langkah awal untuk menarik dan mengekalkan modal insan yang
berkemahiran dari dalam dan luar negara adalah penubuhan Talent Corporation yang
dijangka beroperasi pada awal tahun 2011. Melalui agensi ini, adalah menjadi harapan
agar berbagai program dapat dirancang untuk menangani fenomena brain drain.
Walaupun sudah ada beberapa inisiatif Brain Gain yang diusahakan di beberapa
kementerian, namun usaha yang lebih komprehensif dan tersusun perlu diketengahkan
agar kita dapat membawa pulang anak watan atau mengekalkan perkhidmatan mereka
di Malaysia supaya dapat menyumbang kepada pembangunan negara.
Kerajaan memperuntukkan lebih daripada RM700 juta untuk mempergiat program
latihan dan kemahiran manakala Program Latihan 1Malaysia pula akan dilaksanakan
dengan peruntukan RM 500 juta. Ini bermakna lebih daripada RM1.2 bilion akan
dibelanjakan untuk meningkatkan kemahiran siswazah, lepasan sekolah, belia dan para
pekerja. Sememangnya saban tahun kerajaan telah menyediakan peruntukan yang
besar untuk latihan dan kemahiran, namun bagi menyahut cabaran Perdana Menteri
untuk bersedia ke arah negara maju, peruntukan bagi tahun 2011 dan seterus-nya perlu
diperincikan dengan jelas agar peruntukan tersebut dibelanjakan sejajar dengan NKEA
dan inisiatif yang diberikan penekanan oleh pihak kerajaan.
Satu langkah berani yang diambil oleh pihak kerajaan untuk menangani rungutan rakyat
tentang kadar gaji dan upah yang agak rendah pada ketika ini adalah penubuhan Majlis
Konsultansi Gaji Negara. Majlis tersebut akan menjadi wadah bagi semua pihak yang
berkepentingan untuk duduk semeja bagi menggubal kadar dan mekanisme penetapan
gaji mininum dan isu- isu yang berkaitan. Langkah awal telah diambil oleh pihak
kerajaan sebelum ini dengan menaikkan gaji posmen daripada RM610 kepada RM710
sebulan.Bajet ini turut menguatkuasakan gaji pokok minimum untuk pengawal
keselamatan.
Strategi ketiga Baget 2011 adalah mensejahterakan hidup rakyat.Pihak kerajaan telah
menyediakan berbagai program untuk memastikan dalam menghambat taraf negara
maju, segmen rakyat yang tertentu terus menerima pembelaan dan diberikan bantuan
dan galakan yang setimpal. Namun begitu, kita perlu memberikan penghormatan
kepada pihak kerajaan kerana memperkenalkan berbagai program pemilikan rumah
yang mesra rakyat dan keputusan kerajaan untuk tidak menaikkan kadar tol PLUS
Expressway Berhad bagi tempoh lima tahun akan datang.
Skim Rumah Pertamaku yang diterajui oleh Cagamas akan membolehkan pembeli
rumah pertama yang berpendapatan isi rumah kurang dari RM3,000 sebulan untuk
mendapatkan pinjaman seratus peratus. Ini bermakna, pembeli rumah pertama yang
terdiri daripada golongan belia, tidak lagi perlu meminjam dari saudara mara dan ibu
bapa untuk mendapatkan 10 peratus wang pendahuluan seperti yang diamalkan oleh
institusi kewangan pada masa sekarang. Skim ini akan memberikan peluang kepada
golongan belia dan siswazah untuk membeli hartanah daripada terus menyewa daripada
pihak ketiga. Inisiatif ini juga dilihat dapat melonjak permintaan bagi berbagai projek
hartanah yang akan dibangunkan dalam Rancangan Malaysia Ke-10.
Strategi keempat Baget 2011 adalah memperkukuh penyampaian perkhidmatan awam.
Penekanan telah diberikan terhadap usaha untuk memudahkan sektor swasta
berurusan dengan agensi kerajaan. Sebagai contoh, proses pendaftaran hartanah akan
dipendekkan daripada 30 hari kepada sehari sahaja. Pihak kerajaan juga telah
16
mengambil langkah proaktif dengan memansuhkan sistem Penilaian Tahap Kecekapan
atau PTK yang akan diganti dengan satu sistem penilaian yang lebih inklusif dan
komprehensif, menjelang Jun 2011.
Secara keseluruhannya, Baget 2011 telah menyerlahkan keazaman Perdana Menteri
untuk membawa Malaysia ke gerbang negara maju. Beliau dengan jelas telah
memperincikan berbagai inisiatif yang perlu diusahakan bagi menarik perhatian pelabur
dalam dan luar negara untuk mengambil peluang perniagaan yang terkandung didalam
NKEA dan Baget 2011. Pemantapan penyampaian perkhidmatan awam juga jelas sekali
menjurus kepada menjadi enabler kepada usaha kerajaan untuk meningkatkan
pelaburan FDI dan juga pelaburan ekuiti di dalam negara.
17
ARKIB : 17/10/2010
Gerakkan segera Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara
KUALA LUMPUR 16 Okt. - Kerajaan harus menyegerakan penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi
Gaji Negara yang diumumkan dalam Bajet 2011 semalam bagi memutuskan dasar gaji
minimum.
Presiden Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC), Syed Shahir Syed Mohamud
berkata, tindakan yang cepat wajar diambil kerana isu kadar penetapan gaji minimum
telah berlarutan terlalu lama.
"Majlis itu nanti akan menjadi platform utama bagi penetapan gaji dan diharap majlis
tersebut akan menjalankan tanggungjawabnya dengan secepat mungkin.
"Saya juga berharap selepas penubuhan majlis ini, pekerja tidak perlu menunggu
bertahun-tahun lagi untuk mengetahui ketetapan dasar gaji minimum," katanya ketika
dihubungi Mingguan Malaysia di sini, hari ini.
Beliau mengulas pengumuman Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak ketika
membentangkan Bajet 2011 di Dewan Rakyat semalam mengenai penubuhan Majlis
Konsultasi Gaji Negara yang menjadi platform utama dalam penetapan gaji minimum.
Perdana Menteri berkata, majlis tersebut akan dianggotai oleh majikan, kesatuan
pekerja, kumpulan pekerja tanpa persatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, wakil
pertubuhan bukan kerajaan (NGO) dan individu tertentu, manakala Kementerian
Sumber Manusia akan bertindak sebagai sekretariat.
Sementara itu, Presiden Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja-Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan
Awam (CUEPACS), Omar Osman berkata, pihaknya menyambut baik pengumuman itu
dan berharap majlis tersebut akan melaksanakan dengan segera tindakan yang
sepatutnya bagi menetapkan dasar gaji minimum pekerja.
"Penubuhan majlis itu akan membantu para pekerja mendapatkan keputusan yang
rasmi dan tepat daripada kerajaan selain menjadi tempat untuk semua pihak berbincang
mengenai isu kadar penetapan gaji minimum," katanya.
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ARKIB : 17/10/2010
Gaji minimum Jun/Julai 2011
SUNGAI PETANI 16 Okt. – Gaji minimum sektor swasta akan dilaksanakan seawalawalnya pada Jun atau Julai tahun depan, kata Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S.
Subramaniam.
Beliau berkata, bagaimanapun tahap minimum gaji berkenaan hanya akan diputuskan
semasa pembentangan cadangan di Kabinet pada Mac tahun depan.
“Sebelum itu kita akan tubuhkan Majlis Penetapan Gaji Kebangsaan dan sebelum majlis
itu ditubuh satu akta akan digubal dan dibentang dalam sesi Parlimen akan datang.
“Setelah majlis itu dibentuk, ia akan diberi tanggungjawab untuk tentukan cara mana nak
tetapkan gaji minimum itu,” katanya selepas menghadiri Majlis Konvokesyen Ke-3
Universiti Institut Perubatan, Sains dan Teknologi Asia (AIMST) di sini, hari ini.
Subramaniam berkata, penetapan gaji berkenaan akan berdasarkan kepada sama ada
di peringkat kebangsaan, wilayah atau sektor.
Katanya, kemungkinan semua kaedah itu akan digunakan tetapi ia mesti sesuai dengan
keadaan dalam negara selaras dengan pembangunan ekonomi, kebolehan untuk
wujudkan peluang pekerjaan dan tidak menjejas keupayaan negara untuk menarik
pelabur asing.
– BERNAMA
19
ARKIB : 17/10/2010
Gaji minimum Jun/Julai 2011
SUNGAI PETANI 16 Okt. – Gaji minimum sektor swasta akan dilaksanakan seawalawalnya pada Jun atau Julai tahun depan, kata Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S.
Subramaniam.
Beliau berkata, bagaimanapun tahap minimum gaji berkenaan hanya akan diputuskan
semasa pembentangan cadangan di Kabinet pada Mac tahun depan.
“Sebelum itu kita akan tubuhkan Majlis Penetapan Gaji Kebangsaan dan sebelum majlis
itu ditubuh satu akta akan digubal dan dibentang dalam sesi Parlimen akan datang.
“Setelah majlis itu dibentuk, ia akan diberi tanggungjawab untuk tentukan cara mana nak
tetapkan gaji minimum itu,” katanya selepas menghadiri Majlis Konvokesyen Ke-3
Universiti Institut Perubatan, Sains dan Teknologi Asia (AIMST) di sini, hari ini.
Subramaniam berkata, penetapan gaji berkenaan akan berdasarkan kepada sama ada
di peringkat kebangsaan, wilayah atau sektor.
Katanya, kemungkinan semua kaedah itu akan digunakan tetapi ia mesti sesuai dengan
keadaan dalam negara selaras dengan pembangunan ekonomi, kebolehan untuk
wujudkan peluang pekerjaan dan tidak menjejas keupayaan negara untuk menarik
pelabur asing.
– BERNAMA
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ARKIB : 16/10/2010
Gaji minimum sektor swasta dilaksana Jun/Julai 2011
16/10/2010 5:18pm
SUNGAI PETANI 16 Okt. – Gaji minimum sektor swasta akan dilaksanakan seawalawalnya pada Jun atau Julai tahun depan, kata Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr S.
Subramaniam.
Beliau berkata, bagaimanapun tahap minimum gaji berkenaan hanya akan diputuskan
semasa pembentangan cadangan di Kabinet pada Mac tahun depan.
"Sebelum itu kita akan tubuhkan Majlis Penetapan Gaji Kebangsaan dan sebelum majlis
itu ditubuh satu akta akan digubal dan dibentang dalam sesi Parlimen akan datang.
"Setelah majlis itu dibentuk, ia akan diberi tanggungjawab untuk tentukan cara mana nak
tetapkan gaji minimum itu,” katanya kepada pemberita selepas menghadiri Majlis
Konvokesyen ke-3 Universiti AIMST, di sini hari ini.
Subramaniam berkata, penetapan gaji berkenaan akan berdasarkan kepada sama ada
di peringkat kebangsaan, wilayah atau sektor. – Bernama
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ARKIB : 16/10/2010
Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara ditubuh
KUALA LUMPUR 15 Okt. – Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak
mengumumkan penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara yang menjadi platform utama
dalam penetapan gaji minimum.
Beliau berkata, majlis tersebut akan dianggotai oleh majikan, kesatuan pekerja,
kumpulan pekerja tanpa persatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, wakil pertubuhan
bukan kerajaan (NGO) dan individu tertentu manakala Kementerian Sumber Manusia
akan bertindak sebagai sekretariat.
“Kadar dan mekanisme penetapan gaji minimum akan ditentukan oleh Majlis Konsultasi
Gaji Negara. Contohnya, pada masa ini, gaji pokok permulaan posmen telah dinaikkan
kepada RM710 sebulan pada 1 Julai 2010 berbanding RM610 (sebelumnya).
“Dengan kenaikan ini, upah keseluruhan posmen meningkat daripada RM1,035 sebulan
kepada RM1,285 termasuk elaun tetap,” katanya sewaktu membentangkan Bajet 2011
di Dewan Rakyat hari ini.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Perdana Menteri berkata, kerajaan akan
menguatkuasakan gaji pokok minimum pengawal keselamatan antara RM500 hingga
RM700 sebulan mengikut kawasan berbanding RM300 hingga RM400 pada masa ini.
“Dengan kenaikan ini, pendapatan keseluruhan pengawal keselamatan, termasuk elaun
adalah melebihi RM1,000 sebulan. Kenaikan ini berkuat kuasa mulai Januari 2011,”
katanya.
Turut diumumkan Perdana Menteri ialah pelancaran Dana Pencen Swasta pada tahun
2011 untuk memberi manfaat kepada pekerja sektor swasta dan mereka yang bekerja
sendiri.
Katanya, pelepasan cukai pendapatan sehingga RM6,000 sedia ada bagi caruman
pekerja kepada Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja (KWSP) diperluaskan untuk meliputi
caruman yang dibuat kepada Dana Pencen Swasta termasuk caruman oleh mereka
yang bekerja sendiri.
“Majikan juga akan diberi potongan cukai ke atas caruman yang dibuat bagi pihak
pekerjanya. Ini akan memberikan pilihan kepada rakyat bagi melabur untuk hari tua
mereka,” katanya.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Perdana Menteri berkata, Program Latihan 1Malaysia
akan dilaksanakan bermula Januari 2011 dengan peruntukan sebanyak RM500 juta.
Beliau berkata, program latihan itu mempunyai tiga komponen dengan yang pertama
membabitkan kos RM200 juta untuk latihan sambilan pada sebelah malam dan hujung
minggu di pusat latihan terpilih.
22
Katanya, ia akan dikendalikan oleh Kolej Komuniti, Institut Kemahiran Belia Negara
(IKBN), Pusat GiatMara dan Institut Latihan Perindustrian (ILP) dengan kemudahan
sedia ada.
“Antara kursus yang ditawarkan pada sebelah malam adalah kursus Bahasa Melayu,
Bahasa Mandarin, Bahasa Tamil, Bahasa Inggeris, Bahasa Arab dan kelas muzik.
“Pada hujung minggu pula, kursus berbentuk kemahiran dan teknikal akan dilaksanakan
termasuk bakeri, menjahit, spa, mekanik, elektrik dan kimpalan,” katanya.
Perdana Menteri berkata, Program Latihan 1Malaysia juga meliputi peruntukan RM200
juta daripada Tabung Pembangunan Sumber Manusia yang membolehkan syarikat
membiayai program latihan khusus bagi pekerja mereka.
Selain itu katanya, Kementerian Sumber Manusia juga menyediakan RM100 juta untuk
membolehkan pekerja meningkatkan kemahiran dalam pelbagai bidang teknikal.
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ARKIB : 16/10/2010
Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara ditubuh
KUALA LUMPUR 15 Okt. – Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak
mengumumkan penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara yang menjadi platform utama
dalam penetapan gaji minimum.
Beliau berkata, majlis tersebut akan dianggotai oleh majikan, kesatuan pekerja,
kumpulan pekerja tanpa persatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, wakil pertubuhan
bukan kerajaan (NGO) dan individu tertentu manakala Kementerian Sumber Manusia
akan bertindak sebagai sekretariat.
“Kadar dan mekanisme penetapan gaji minimum akan ditentukan oleh Majlis Konsultasi
Gaji Negara. Contohnya, pada masa ini, gaji pokok permulaan posmen telah dinaikkan
kepada RM710 sebulan pada 1 Julai 2010 berbanding RM610 (sebelumnya).
“Dengan kenaikan ini, upah keseluruhan posmen meningkat daripada RM1,035 sebulan
kepada RM1,285 termasuk elaun tetap,” katanya sewaktu membentangkan Bajet 2011
di Dewan Rakyat hari ini.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Perdana Menteri berkata, kerajaan akan
menguatkuasakan gaji pokok minimum pengawal keselamatan antara RM500 hingga
RM700 sebulan mengikut kawasan berbanding RM300 hingga RM400 pada masa ini.
“Dengan kenaikan ini, pendapatan keseluruhan pengawal keselamatan, termasuk elaun
adalah melebihi RM1,000 sebulan. Kenaikan ini berkuat kuasa mulai Januari 2011,”
katanya.
Turut diumumkan Perdana Menteri ialah pelancaran Dana Pencen Swasta pada tahun
2011 untuk memberi manfaat kepada pekerja sektor swasta dan mereka yang bekerja
sendiri.
Katanya, pelepasan cukai pendapatan sehingga RM6,000 sedia ada bagi caruman
pekerja kepada Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja (KWSP) diperluaskan untuk meliputi
caruman yang dibuat kepada Dana Pencen Swasta termasuk caruman oleh mereka
yang bekerja sendiri.
“Majikan juga akan diberi potongan cukai ke atas caruman yang dibuat bagi pihak
pekerjanya. Ini akan memberikan pilihan kepada rakyat bagi melabur untuk hari tua
mereka,” katanya.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Perdana Menteri berkata, Program Latihan 1Malaysia
akan dilaksanakan bermula Januari 2011 dengan peruntukan sebanyak RM500 juta.
Beliau berkata, program latihan itu mempunyai tiga komponen dengan yang pertama
membabitkan kos RM200 juta untuk latihan sambilan pada sebelah malam dan hujung
minggu di pusat latihan terpilih.
24
Katanya, ia akan dikendalikan oleh Kolej Komuniti, Institut Kemahiran Belia Negara
(IKBN), Pusat GiatMara dan Institut Latihan Perindustrian (ILP) dengan kemudahan
sedia ada.
“Antara kursus yang ditawarkan pada sebelah malam adalah kursus Bahasa Melayu,
Bahasa Mandarin, Bahasa Tamil, Bahasa Inggeris, Bahasa Arab dan kelas muzik.
“Pada hujung minggu pula, kursus berbentuk kemahiran dan teknikal akan dilaksanakan
termasuk bakeri, menjahit, spa, mekanik, elektrik dan kimpalan,” katanya.
Perdana Menteri berkata, Program Latihan 1Malaysia juga meliputi peruntukan RM200
juta daripada Tabung Pembangunan Sumber Manusia yang membolehkan syarikat
membiayai program latihan khusus bagi pekerja mereka.
Selain itu katanya, Kementerian Sumber Manusia juga menyediakan RM100 juta untuk
membolehkan pekerja meningkatkan kemahiran dalam pelbagai bidang teknikal.
25
ARKIB : 22/10/2010
'Kerajaan tidak terburu-buru'
Oleh AINUL ASNIERA AHSAN
bisnes @utusan.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR 21 Okt. - Penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara yang diumumkan
pada Bajet 2011, tidak bermakna kerajaan berada dalam keadaan terburu-buru untuk
melaksanakan penetapan gaji minimum di Malaysia.
Sebaliknya, majlis yang akan ditubuhkan pada awal 2011 itu membolehkan kerajaan
melihat secara terperinci tentang kesediaan dan keupayaan negara untuk membuat
penetapan gaji minimum.
Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri, Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop berkata, berikutan
itu majlis tersebut akan dianggotai oleh majikan, kesatuan pekerja, kumpulan pekerja
tanpa persatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, wakil pertubuhan bukan kerajaan
(NGO) dan individu tertentu.
Kementerian Sumber Manusia pula bertindak sebagai sekretariat.
''Kerajaan tubuhkan majlis ini bukan untuk buat keputusan penetapan gaji minimum
serta-merta,'' katanya ketika menjawab persoalan yang dikemukakan oleh peserta
dalam sesi MIM CEO Luncheon anjuran Institut Pengurusan Malaysia (MIM) di sini hari
ini.
Hadir sama Presiden MIM, Tun Mohammed Hanif Omar.
Nor Mohamed mengakui usaha melakukan penetapan gaji minimum di negara ini adalah
rumit kerana sekiranya tidak dibuat secara berhari-hati, ia boleh meruntuhkan sektor
swasta.
Katanya, penubuhan majlis itu membolehkan kerajaan mendapat gambaran sebenar
dan maklum balas daripada anggota-anggotanya dengan lebih jelas.
Beliau berkata, ada negara lain-lain di dunia ini menggunakan platform itu untuk
melakukan penetapan gaji, malah ada yang tidak buat dan tidak mewujudkan majlis
seumpama itu langsung.
Bagaimanapun, Malaysia menubuhkan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara untuk
memperbaiki taraf hidup pekerja terutama golongan yang tinggal di bandar.
Ini kerana, tambahnya, kerajaan mendapati gaji yang diterima oleh pekerja tempatan
masih tidak memadai.
''Justeru, penubuhan majlis berkenaan untuk memastikan pekerja tempatan dibayar gaji
setimpal bagi membolehkan mereka dan keluarga menikmati persekitaran kehidupan
selesa, seiring dengan matlamat Malaysia ke arah negara berpendapatan tinggi.
26
''Atas alasan itu, majlis ini dianggotai oleh semua pihak,'' jelasnya.
Mengulas mengenai perkara itu, Nor Mohamed percaya pelaksanaan penetapan gaji
minimum boleh dilakukan sekiranya ia seiring dengan peningkatan produktiviti pekerja.
27
ARKIB : 21/10/2010
Majlis Konsultasi Gaji ditubuh selewatnya awal Jan 2011
21/10/2010 7:27pm
KUALA LUMPUR 21 Okt. – Majlis Konsultasi Gaji akan ditubuhkan selewat-lewatnya
pada Januari tahun depan untuk menentukan kadar dan mekanisme penetapan gaji
minimum sebagai langkah untuk meningkatkan produktiviti pekerja.
Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri, Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop berkata, penubuhan
majlis ini penting bagi mencari kaedah yang paling sesuai dalam menentukan gaji
minimum yang sepatutnya diberikan kepada para pekerja di negara ini.
"Isu gaji minimum ini telah lama wujud. Ia sangat rumit dan memerlukan masa dan
kajian yang teliti. Kita perlu mendapatkan maklum balas daripada semua pihak termasuk
majikan, persatuan pekerja dan badan bukan kerajaan sebelum membuat sebarang
keputusan,” katanya selepas menyampaikan ucapan pada majlis makan tengah hari
bersama Ketua-ketua Pegawai Eksekutif anjuran Institut Pengurusan Malaysia, hari ini.
"Banyak negara luar yang telah buat, dan kita pun akan berbuat demikian untuk
memberi lebih motivasi kepada para pekerja,” kata Nor Mohamed.
Cadangan penubuhan Majlis Konsultasi Gaji ini diumumkan dalam pembentangan Bajet
2011 baru-baru ini sebagai satu platform penetapan gaji dan pengenalan gaji minimum.
Ia akan diwakili oleh majikan, kesatuan pekerja, kumpulan pekerja tanpa persatuan,
28
ARKIB : 20/10/2010
Lebih ramai dijangka minat jadi pengawal keselamatan
PETALING JAYA 19 Okt. - Lebih ramai rakyat tempatan dijangka kembali berminat
bekerja sebagai pengawal keselamatan selepas pelaksanaan gaji minimum baru untuk
sektor berkenaan dikuatkuasakan.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam percaya pelaksanaan gaji pokok
baru pengawal keselamatan antara RM500 hingga RM700 sebulan mengikut kawasan
dijangka berkesan menarik mereka menceburi kerjaya tersebut.
"Kenaikan sebanyak RM200 berbanding RM300 hingga RM400 sekarang mampu
menarik minat rakyat tempatan untuk menjadi pengawal keselamatan,'' katanya pada
sidang akhbar selepas merasmikan Majlis Persidangan Pembangunan Sumber Manusia
Berhad (PSMB) di sini hari ini.
Turut hadir Ketua Setiausaha kementerian itu, Datuk R. Segarajah; Timbalan Ketua
Setiausaha Bahagian Pengurusan, Mohd. Shariff Hussin dan Ketua Eksekutif PSMB,
Amirnuddin Mazlan.
Persidangan bertemakan 'Memajukan Pembangunan Modal Insan ke Arah Mencapai
Ekonomi Berpendapatan Tinggi' berlangsung hari ini hingga esok di Pusat Konvensyen
Sunway Pyramid.
Mengenai kenaikan gaji yang agak rendah iaitu RM200, Subramaniam berkata, orang
ramai perlu melihat perkara itu secara menyeluruh.
Jelasnya, pengawal keselamatan bukan sahaja mendapat gaji pokok malah mereka juga
diberi bayaran bekerja lebih masa serta bayaran kebajikan lain oleh majikan masingmasing.
"Perkara paling penting adalah kenaikan gaji ini dapat memastikan pengawal
keselamatan menikmati caruman Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja (KWSP) yang
lebih tinggi," katanya.
Sementara itu, Subramaniam memberitahu, gaji minimum baru itu hanya akan
diputuskan semasa pembentangan cadangannya di Kabinet pada Mac tahun depan.
"Selain itu, Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara yang diumumkan oleh Perdana Menteri, Datuk
Seri Najib Tun Razak dalam Bajet 2011 akan menjadi landasan utama dalam penetapan
gaji minimum itu.
''Kadar dan mekanisme penetapan gaji minimum akan ditentukan oleh Majlis Konsultasi
Gaji Negara,'' jelasnya.
29
ARKIB : 19/10/2010
Kabinet lulus polisi gaji minimum - Subramaniam
19/10/2010 8:12pm
PETALING JAYA 19 Okt. - Kabinet telah memberi kelulusan kepada Kementerian
Sumber Manusia melaksanakan polisi gaji minimum menerusi Majlis Konsultasi Gaji
Negara, kata menterinya, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam.
Sehubungan itu, beliau berkata, kementerian akan menggubal akta baru untuk
membolehkan majlis tersebut ditubuhkan bagi penetapan kadar dan mekanisme gaji
minimum.
"Sebarang keputusan pada masa depan dan pelaksanaan (gaji minimum) akan
dilakukan menerusi majlis itu berdasarkan kuasa yang diperuntukkan melalui akta baru,
yang bakal dibentang di Parlimen pada sesi akan datang,” katanya kepada pemberita
selepas merasmikan persidangan dan pameran Pembangunan Sumber Manysia Berhad
2010 di sini hari ini.
Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak ketika pembentangan Bajet 2010 di
Parlimen Jumaat lepas, mengumumkan penubuhan majlis itu, yang akan menjadi
patform utama penentuan gaji di negara ini.
Beliau berkata, Majlis Konsultasi Gaji Negara akan dianggotai wakil majikan, kesatuan
sekerja, pekerja tanpa kesatuan, agensi kerajaan, ahli akademik, badan bukan kerajaan
dan orang perseorangan. - Bernama
30
ARKIB : 01/09/2010
Segera laksana gaji minimum
UTUSAN: Kenapa penetapan gaji minimum dilihat begitu mendesak ketika ini?
KHAIRY: Isu ini berkait rapat dengan kebajikan rakyat keseluruhan. Bagi Pemuda
UMNO, isu gaji minimum adalah satu isu nasional yang begitu relevan dengan generasi
muda kerana mereka mewakili hampir dua per tiga daripada golongan bekerja. Dalam
desakan ini, kalau kita lihat pola kenaikan dan tahap gaji pekerja tempatan, ia berada
pada paras yang rendah. Berdasarkan kajian Bank Dunia, purata kenaikan gaji tahunan
bagi sektor domestik dan eksport dari 1994 hingga 2007 hanyalah sekitar 2.6 peratus
dan 2.8 peratus, berbanding dengan kadar purata dunia yang dipetik daripada laporan
Pejabat Buruh Antarabangsa iaitu 3.2 peratus.
Ini bermakna dalam tempoh itu, kenaikan gaji pekerja di Malaysia bukan sahaja sangat
perlahan, malah ia juga lebih rendah daripada purata antarabangsa. Bahkan, kadar gaji
tersebut juga lebih rendah daripada peningkatan produktiviti pekerja sekitar 2.9 peratus
bagi tempoh yang sama. Tambahan kepada kenaikan gaji yang rendah ini adalah
kenaikan harga barang yang meningkat. Jika kita lihat pada kadar kenaikan inflasi rasmi,
ia sebenarnya tidak menggambarkan keadaan sebenar di peringkat rakyat kebanyakan.
Kalau kita tengok kenaikan harga barang-barang perlu pula, ia banyak didorong oleh
kenaikan secara mendadak.
Namun, dalam membuat perbandingan dengan kadar inflasi yang rasmi, kita masih
melihat jurang yang besar antara peningkatan kos sara hidup dengan kadar gaji. Kajian
UNICEF menunjukkan bahawa purata kadar inflasi negara dari 1990 hingga 2008
adalah pada tahap empat peratus berbanding kadar kenaikan gaji sekitar 2.6 dan 2.8
peratus sahaja. Apabila kenaikan kadar gaji tidak setaraf dengan inflasi, maka kita akan
melihat kuasa membeli pekerja Malaysia dan rakyat jatuh. Apatah lagi maklum balas
dan hasil kaji selidik yang dijalankan oleh Pemuda UMNO mendapati, masih ada pekerja
kilang di negara ini yang ditawarkan gaji bulanan sebanyak RM460.
Ia jauh lebih rendah daripada Pendapatan Garis Kemiskinan (PGK) iaitu sebanyak
RM720 sebulan bagi Semenanjung Malaysia. Kita berdepan dengan situasi sebegini
yang bukan sahaja berlaku di sektor perkilangan tetapi juga sektor tekstil, perladangan
dan banyak sektor lain. Kesimpulannya amalan mengharapkan kuasa pasaran bagi
menentukan gaji telah gagal. Isu ini juga bukan hanya berkait dengan ekonomi, tetapi
isu moral yang mana kerajaan tidak boleh lagi membiarkan tahap gaji yang begitu
rendah.
Apabila kita bercakap tentang pekerja tempatan di sektor perkilangan, rata-rata
majoritinya adalah anak-anak muda Melayu. Apa yang dibimbangkan ialah mereka akan
meragui dasar kerajaan bagi membantu orang Melayu apabila gaji mereka sendiri
berada di tahap yang begitu rendah. Jadi saya melihat perjuangan untuk gaji minimum
ini adalah perjuangan untuk moral bagi memastikan tiada rakyat dan pekerja Malaysia
yang hidup di dalam kemiskinan. Bukan kerana tiada pekerjaan tetapi kerana gaji
mereka berada di bawah paras kemiskinan.
31
Bagaimana dari sudut kemampuan kerajaan, lebih-lebih lagi dalam tempoh ekonomi
sukar seperti hari ini?
Perkara ini tidak melibatkan perbelanjaan kerajaan kerana di dalam penetapan gaji
minimum, bukan kerajaan yang perlu bayar atau menampung perbezaan antara gaji
minimum dan gaji yang ditawarkan. Tetapi ia menyentuh mengenai persetujuan
kerajaan bagi menimbang cadangan memperkenalkan gaji minimum dengan meminda
Akta Pekerjaan 1955 bagi tujuan itu. Saya harap ia dapat dilaksanakan pada tahun ini
juga memandangkan Model Baru Ekonomi (MBE) akan diperkenalkan pada Oktober ini.
Berita lanjut, sila rujuk edisi cetakan Utusan Malaysia atau langgani e-Paper di
http://ebrowse.bluehyppo.com/utusan/index.asp
32
ARKIB : 26/08/2010
UMNO sedia runding
Oleh ABDUL YAZID ALIAS
[email protected]
BANTING 25 Ogos – UMNO akan berunding dengan Kementerian Sumber Manusia
bagi membolehkan pelaksanaan dasar gaji minimum dilaksanakan segera khususnya di
sektor perkilangan.
Ketua Penerangannya, Datuk Ahmad Maslan berkata, ia salah satu langkah bagi
memastikan setiap pekerja swasta menerima gaji yang mencukupi selaras dengan taraf
hidup semasa.
Ini kerana, katanya, berdasarkan maklumat, sebahagian besar pekerja sektor
perkilangan di negara ini menerima gaji pokok RM500 sebulan yang ditetapkan oleh
majikan sejak 35 tahun lalu.
Jelasnya, jumlah itu ternyata terlalu rendah dan berada di bawah paras pendapatan
garis kemiskinan sebanyak RM700 sebulan.
“Kita faham keluhan pekerja tempatan dari pelbagai sektor termasuk perkilangan yang
rata-rata mereka menerima gaji asas yang begitu rendah dan tidak setimpal dengan kos
hidup masa kini.
“Kita mahu taraf pendapatan yang lebih baik. Sehubungan itu, kita akan sampaikan
keluhan dan rungutan kepada Menteri Sumber Manusia (Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam)
supaya kebajikan para pekerja ini diberi perhatian sewajarnya,” katanya.
Ahmad yang juga Timbalan Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri berucap pada majlis
berbuka puasa dan ramah mesra bersama kira-kira 600 pekerja kilang di kawasan Kuala
Langat dan Sepang di Bandar Sungai Emas di sini, malam tadi.
Turut hadir Ketua Pemuda UMNO, Khairy Jamaluddin serta Pengerusi Kesatuan
Sekerja Industri Elektronik Wilayah Barat Semenanjung Malaysia (KSIEWBSM), Wan
Noorul Azhar Mohd. Hanafiah.
Pada majlis itu, Ahmad menerima memorandum daripada KSIEWBSM yang menuntut
kerajaan mengambil tindakan serta langkah-langkah yang perlu bagi memastikan
kebajikan pekerja sektor berkenaan terbela.
Antara kandungan memorandum tersebut ialah meminta kerajaan melaksanakan segera
gaji minimum kepada pekerja sektor berkenaan, kebajikan pekerja dari segi manfaat
pekerjaan termasuk cuti, jam bekerja dan sebagainya.
Dalam pada itu, Wan Noorul Azhar ketika ditemui berkata, pihaknya meminta kerajaan
Pusat agar mencari jalan membantu menyelesaikan masalah yang dihadapi para
pekerja termasuk meminta pihak majikan supaya mematuhi peraturan sedia ada.
33
ARKIB : 25/08/2010
Pemuda BN mahu gaji minimum dilaksana
Oleh SAIFULIZAM MOHAMAD
[email protected]
KUALA LUMPUR 24 Ogos - Pergerakan Pemuda Barisan Nasional (BN) hari ini
mendesak kerajaan melaksanakan segera sistem gaji minimum untuk semua sektor
pekerjaan di negara ini.
Pengerusinya, Khairy Jamaluddin berkata, langkah itu penting kerana gaji minimum
adalah antara komponen terpenting dalam pelaksanaan Model Baru Ekonomi (MBE)
serta usaha ke arah negara berpendapatan tinggi.
Beliau berkata, tanpa gaji minimum, MBE sudah pasti sukar untuk dijayakan, begitu juga
hasrat menjadikan Malaysia sebagai negara berpendapatan tinggi ekoran masih
terdapat kelompok rakyat di negara ini diberi gaji di bawah paras kemiskinan.
"Berdasarkan kajian kira-kira 34 peratus daripada 1.3 juta pekerja yang disoal selidik
memperoleh gaji kurang daripada RM700. Pendapatan ini adalah di bawah kadar
kemiskinan.
"Kajian juga mendapati purata kadar kenaikan gaji di Malaysia hanya sekadar 2.6
peratus dalam tempoh 10 tahun berbanding purata 3.2 peratus di peringkat dunia.
Masalah ini hanya boleh diatasi dengan pelaksanaan gaji minimum," katanya.
Beliau berkata demikian pada sidang akhbar di pejabat Pergerakan Pemuda UMNO di
Menara Dato' Onn, Pusat Dagangan Dunia Putra (PWTC) di sini hari ini.
Terdahulu, Khairy serta pemimpin Pemuda BN lain mengadakan perbincangan dengan
Presiden Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja-Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam (CUEPACS),
Omar Osman dan Setiausaha Agung Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC), G.
Rajasekaran.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Khairy berkata, pelaksanaan gaji minimum bukanlah
satu perkara yang asing kerana 90 peratus negara di seluruh dunia melaksanakan gaji
minimum.
"Telah tiba masanya pelaksanaan gaji minimum ini benar-benar direalisasikan. Pemuda
BN tidak mahu melihat masih ada rakyat kita dalam zaman ini dan dalam era ini
memperolehi gaji di bawah paras kemiskinan.
"Dalam perbincangan tadi, saya diberitahu terdapat sebuah kilang bertaraf
antarabangsa di selatan tanah air menawarkan gaji RM540 kepada pekerja mereka
yang mana saya kira ia terlalu rendah," katanya.
34
Beliau berkata, dengan gaji sebanyak itu sudah pasti para pekerja terpaksa berhempas
pulas meneruskan kehidupan kerana taraf hidup sentiasa meningkat dari semasa ke
semasa.
Sementara itu, beliau berkata, pihak Pemuda BN, CUEPACS dan MTUC akan
bekerjasama menganjurkan forum khas mengenai pelaksanaan gaji minimum.
"Forum yang kita jangka diadakan dalam waktu terdekat ini akan menjadi medan
perbincangan segala perkara berkaitan dengan pelaksanaan gaji minimum," katanya.
Antaranya, beliau berkata, angka siling bagi gaji minimum serta cara pelaksanaannya
sama ada mengikut sektor atau dilakukan secara umum.
35
ARKIB : 24/08/2010
Pemuda BN gesa segerakan penetapan gaji minimum
24/08/2010 10:10pm
KUALA LUMPUR 24 Ogos – Pemuda Barisan Nasional (BN) hari ini menggesa kerajaan
menyegerakan penetapan gaji minimum sebagai menyokong matlamat menjadikan
Malaysia sebuah negara berpendapatan tinggi.
Pengerusinya, Khairy Jamaluddin berkata, sekiranya perkara itu tidak dimuktamadkan
dengan segera, maka agak sukar untuk mencapai matlamat negara berpendapatan
tinggi yang adil, saksama serta tiada jurang pendapatan yang begitu ketara.
"Kita mendapati melalui kajian kita pada waktu ini, 34 peratus daripada 1.3 juta pekerja
di Malaysia mendapat pendapatan kurang daripada RM700 sebulan, iaitu pendapatan
yang lebih rendah daripada garis kemiskinan (RM720 sebulan).
"Berdasarkan kepada kajian yang telah dibuat oleh Bank Dunia pula, Malaysia telah
mencatat kenaikan gaji purata 2.6 peratus setiap tahun dalam tempoh masa 10 tahun
yang lepas, berbanding dengan purata dunia iaitu 3.2 peratus.
"Kalau kita lihat dari segi gaji minimum juga, umum tahu bahawa 90 peratus daripada
negara di dunia ini telah pun memperkenalkan beberapa bentuk gaji minimum,” katanya
kepada pemberita selepas bertemu pemimpin Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia
(MTUC) dan Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam (CUEPACS) bagi
membincangkan isu berkenaan di sini.
Khairy berkata, Pemuda BN dengan kerjasama MTUC dan CUEPACS, akan
menganjurkan “Forum Gaji Minimum” dalam masa terdekat dan segala ketetapan serta
resolusi yang dihasilkan akan diserahkan kepada kerajaan supaya isu tersebut dapat
ditangani dengan kadar segera.
Dasar gaji minimum dijangka dibentangkan di Kabinet pada akhir Oktober ini. –
Bernama
36
ARKIB : 16/08/2010
MTUC, MEF beza pendapat
Oleh Ahmad Fadzil Zainol Ariffin
[email protected]
KUALA LUMPUR 15 Ogos - Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) menyokong
langkah kerajaan merangka formula terbaik bagi menangani masalah gaji minimum
dalam sektor swasta bagi menjadikan Malaysia sebuah negara berpendapatan tinggi.
Presidennya, Syed Shahrir Syed Mohamud berkata, pada masa ini kajian Kementerian
Sumber Manusia menunjukkan hampir 34 peratus daripada kira-kira 1.3 juta pekerja
memperoleh pendapatan bulanan di bawah RM700.
"Maka, pelaksanaan gaji minimum perlu disegerakan. Jika rakyat Malaysia mempunyai
pendapatan boleh guna yang tinggi, barulah hasrat negara berpendapatan tinggi dapat
direalisasikan," katanya ketika dihubungi Utusan Malaysia di sini hari ini.
Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak semalam menyatakan formula itu yang
mengambil kira situasi dalam negara dan serantau akan dibentangkan oleh Kementerian
Sumber Manusia kepada Kabinet dalam masa terdekat.
Jelas Najib, antara cirinya membantu mengurangkan pergantungan terhadap pekerja
asing dan berupaya melahirkan pekerja tempatan yang lebih mahir dan berdaya saing.
Tambah Syed Shahrir, gaji yang mengikut kuasa pasaran ketika ini tidak selari dengan
peningkatan kos hidup.
"Kajian Bank Dunia mendapati pergerakan upah di Malaysia hanya mencatatkan
pertumbuhan 2.6 peratus setiap tahun sejak 10 tahun lalu berbanding peningkatan kos
hidup dalam tempoh sama.
"Ia disahkan sendiri oleh Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam minggu
lalu yang merujuk statistik yang sama," ujarnya.
Syed Shahrir juga tidak melihat penetapan gaji minimum membebankan sektor swasta
kerana ia akan diimbangi dengan peningkatan kuasa beli pengguna yang akhirnya
membeli produk keluaran mereka.
Sementara itu, Pengarah Eksekutif Persekutuan Majikan-Majikan Malaysia (MEF),
Shamsuddin Bardan tidak bersetuju dengan pelaksanaan gaji minimum kerana ia
mendorong kenaikan kos kepada sektor swasta.
"Ini boleh membantutkan perkembangan syarikat. Malah penetapan gaji minimum tidak
mendorong untuk memotivasikan dan meningkatkan produktiviti kerana pekerja tetap
dibayar tanpa dinilai prestasi mereka," katanya.
37
Katanya, penetapan gaji minimum juga dikhuatiri menjejaskan minat pelabur dalam dan
luar negara untuk beroperasi di negara ini.
"Jika kerajaan mahu menjadikan sektor swasta sebagai pemacu ekonomi negara, maka
langkah ini (penetapan gaji minimum) bukanlah sesuatu yang baik.
"Terutamanya kepada syarikat-syarikat kecil. Akhirnya pekerja diberhentikan dan tiada
punca pendapatan. Ini bukanlah negara berpendapatan tinggi yang diharapkan,"
katanya.
38
ARKIB : 15/08/2010
Formula terbaik gaji swasta
Oleh TARMIZI ABDUL RAHIM
[email protected]
KUALA LUMPUR 14 Ogos – Kerajaan sedang merangka formula terbaik bagi
menangani masalah gaji minimum dalam sektor swasta sebagai salah satu persediaan
menjadi negara berpendapatan tinggi.
Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak berkata, formula itu yang mengambil kira
sektor serta peringkat iaitu nasional dan serantau akan dibentangkan oleh Kementerian
Sumber Manusia kepada Kabinet dalam masa terdekat.
Menurut beliau, antara ciri-cirinya ia akan membantu mengurangkan pergantungan
negara terhadap tenaga buruh luar seperti sektor pembinaan dan perkhidmatan, malah
gaji minimum juga berupaya melahirkan pekerja rakyat tempatan yang lebih mahir dan
berdaya saing.
“Tetapi pada masa yang sama kerajaan mahukan syarikat-syarikat swasta turut
melaksanakan inisiatif meningkatkan kemahiran pekerja mereka. Kita amat sedar ia
bukan perkara mudah yang boleh dibuat dalam sekelip mata dan sebab itu kerajaan
secara konsisten akan membantu industri ini.
“Transformasi sektor swasta sangat diperlukan kerana ekonomi tidak dapat berkembang
tanpa komitmen dan penyertaan positif mereka,” katanya.
Beliau berkata demikian dalam ucaptama perasmian Kongres Ekonomi Cina bertajuk
Peranan Masyarakat Cina Mencapai Sasaran Model Baru Ekonomi (MBE) dan
Rancangan Malaysia Kesepuluh (RMK-10) di sebuah hotel di sini hari ini.
Hadir sama Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek dan beberapa pimpinan
tertinggi parti-parti komponen Barisan Nasional (BN).
Jelas Perdana Menteri, sebagai sokongan kepada perkembangan itu, kerajaan sedang
memantap dan memperkemaskan sistem pendidikan yang lebih menjurus kepada
melahirkan pekerja berkemahiran tinggi yang menepati kehendak pasaran.
Kerajaan juga katanya, menyediakan latihan kemahiran kepada pelajar yang tercicir
dalam sistem persekolahan bagi meningkatkan nilai mereka dalam pasaran pekerjaan.
“Pelajar cemerlang juga akan ditawarkan biasiswa melanjutkan pelajaran. Ingin saya
tekankan sekali lagi bahawa tidak akan ada seorang pun daripada rakyat negara ini
yang cemerlang akan dihalang daripada meningkatkan potensi diri. Mereka inilah aset
negara paling bernilai pada masa hadapan,” katanya.
Sementara itu, Najib juga meminta masyarakat Cina supaya membantu menghalang
pengaliran tenaga mahir yang berkualiti dan terbaik ke luar negara.
39
“Pada masa ini, terdapat kira-kira 700,000 rakyat Malaysia yang bekerja di luar negara
dan kebanyakan daripada mereka adalah Cina.
“Kerajaan meminta jasa baik kamu semua untuk menghentikan brain drain (kekurangan
tenaga mahir) ini.
“MBE dan RMK-10 sebenarnya menyediakan banyak peluang terbaik kepada mereka ini
yang amat berbakat. Apa yang tinggal lagi hanya kita untuk memulakan cabaran ini
kepada mereka,” katanya.
40
ARKIB : 14/08/2010
Kerajaan kaji formula terbaik tangani isu gaji minimum
14/08/2010 7:16pm
KUALA LUMPUR 14 Ogos – Kerajaan sedang mengkaji formula terbaik bagi menangani
isu gaji minimum, kata Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, hari ini.
"Sementara kita mahu pengeluar dan syarikat untuk menggerakkan rantaian nilai,
kerajaan juga memahami bahawa lonjakan tidak berlaku dalam sekelip mata terutama
bagi syarikat dalam industri berasaskan tenaga manusia.
"Ini sebabnya kenapa Kementerian Sumber Manusia akan membentangkan kes mereka
kepada Kabinet tidak lama lagi.
“Setakat ini, saya minta semua majikan di sini hari ini supaya mempertimbang secara
serius gaji minimum sebagai satu strategi perniagaan dan peluang untuk menggiatkan
perniagaan anda,” katanya semasa merasmikan Kongres Ekonomi Cina yang
bertemakan “Peranan Masyarakat Cina Dalam Mencapai Matlamat Model Baru Ekonomi
(MBE) dan Rancangan Malaysia Ke-10 (RMK-10) di sini.
Katanya, kerajaan mengambil perhatian terhadap hasrat MCA bagi satu dasar gaji
minimum yang komprehensif sebagai langkah bagi membina modal insan ke tahap yang
sesuai dalam sebuah ekonomi berpendapatan tinggi dan ia juga perlu bagi
mengurangkan kebergantungan terhadap tenaga kerja luar terutama dalam sektor
pembinaan dan industri perkhidmatan.
"Satu gaji minimum yang sektoral kemungkinan menawarkan cara terbaik bagi
melahirkan tenaga kerja yang kompetitif dan berkemahiran dan mampu memanfaatkan
potensi rakyat Malaysia,” katanya. – Bernama
41
ARKIB : 11/08/2010
Wanita tempatan jadi amah
Akhirnya kerajaan tampil dengan suatu keputusan yang muktamad mengenai gaji
minimum pembantu rumah warga Indonesia yang sekian lama menjadi teka teki yang
menggusarkan para majikan tempatan.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam mengumumkan bahawa kerajaan
menolak cadangan Indonesia untuk menetapkan bayaran minimum gaji pembantu
rumah warganya pada kadar RM800 sebulan.
Saya percaya keputusan ini pasti melegakan rakyat kita yang menggajikan amah dari
negara jiran. Malah alasan kerajaan iaitu Malaysia tidak mempunyai struktur gaji
minimum serta pertambahan gaji daripada RM300 hingga RM400 berbanding gaji amah
sekarang agak membebankan dan tidak munasabah, adalah keputusan amat rasional,
praktikal dan logik.
Ketegasan pihak kerajaan dalam hal ini wajar diberi pujian kerana selama ini kita
seolah-olah terlalu ‘bermanja’ dan berlembut dengan segala permintaan mereka
termasuk cuti sehari dalam seminggu.
Keputusan muktamad telah dibuat. Persoalan seterusnya ialah apakah langkah yang
perlu dilaksanakan untuk menangani isu kebanjiran pembantu rumah luar di negara
kita?
Di kesempatan ini marilah kita sama-sama memikirkan kaedah dan langkah yang terbaik
untuk kita mengurangkan bilangan amah di negara kita. Ini sekali gus menjadikan
kerjaya pembantu rumah itu sebagai suatu kerjaya pilihan dalam kalangan rakyat
negara kita sendiri.
Wanita tempatan perlu menyahut cabaran untuk menjadikan kerjaya sebagai pembantu
rumah sebagai antara pilihan kerja yang boleh diberi pertimbangan yang sewajarnya
dalam pasaran kerja tempatan. Kadar pengangguran yang dilihat semakin bertambah
sepatutnya menjadi iktibar dan dijadikan pedoman supaya kita tidak terlalu memilih jenis
pekerjaan.
Di kala graduan lepasan universiti pun mengalami masalah untuk memperoleh peluang
pekerjaan, apa pula pilihan yang ada pada wanita tempatan yang tidak mempunyai
kelayakan akademik yang tinggi?
Pilihan peluang kerja yang terhad perlu dilihat secara lebih serius dan mendalam. Maka
kelompok wanita tempatan ini perlu lebih sedar dan insaf serta merebut peluang yang
mendatang tanpa terlalu memilih.
Kaum wanita di negara kita perlu berfikiran lebih terbuka dan buang jauh-jauh stigma
bahawa kerjaya sebagai pembantu rumah adalah sesuatu yang memalukan atau pun
kerjaya kelas ketiga.
42
Perlu diingat bahawa setiap kerja yang dilakukan adalah suatu pekerjaan yang mulia
selagi ia menyediakan rezeki yang halal dan tidak merampas hak orang lain.
Dalam konteks ini, tiada sebab untuk kita rasa malu atau segan untuk menceburi
pekerjaan ini selama mana ia menyediakan peluang kerjaya dengan gaji yang setimpal.
Lantaran itu kita mengharapkan agar kerajaan akan berusaha untuk mengehadkan
aliran masuk amah dari negara jiran seterusnya menyediakan suatu kadar insentif yang
menarik untuk kerjaya ini agar dapat menarik minat wanita tempatan.
Hal ini antara sebab utama wanita tempatan menolak bidang pekerjaan ini yang dilihat
kurang menarik, terutamanya daripada aspek insentif dan kebajikan yang disediakan
oleh pihak majikan berbanding bidang kerjaya yang lain.
Ekoran daripada ini, kita percaya jika pihak kerajaan mampu menyediakan satu garis
panduan yang jelas berkaitan gaji, insentif serta kebajikan yang boleh diperolehi oleh
warga tempatan yang berhasrat untuk bekerja sebagai pembantu rumah, ramai wanita
tempatan akan tampil menceburi bidang kerjaya ini sebagai pilihan utama.
Dengan cara ini juga, kita bukan sahaja dapat menghalang aliran keluar mata wang kita
ke luar, malah dapat membantu menyediakan peluang pekerjaan kepada wanita
tempatan yang sekali gus dapat mengurangkan kadar pengganguran di negara kita
kelak.
Ini juga sedikit sebanyak diyakini mampu mengatasi masalah-masalah yang seringkali
kedengaran melibatkan amah warga asing seperti mendera dan melarikan anak
majikan, mencuri di rumah majikan mahupun lari meninggalkan majikan.
NOOR MOHAMAD SHAKIL HAMEED
Serdang, Selangor
43
ARKIB : 11/08/2010
Draf model gaji minimum pekerja
SHAH ALAM 10 Ogos – Malaysia akan mereka draf model gaji minimanya sendiri
berdasarkan kepada situasi dan keperluan pekerja di negara ini.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam (gambar) berkata, model itu akan
mengambil kira faktor sektor, nasional dan serantau.
Bagaimanapun kata beliau, akan ada sektor tertentu yang mungkin tidak dimasukkan
dalam model tersebut.
‘‘Pungutan data mengenai gaji minimum di setiap sektor pekerjaan di negara ini sudah
dibuat.
‘‘Pihak kementerian akan berjumpa dengan wakil setiap sektor untuk berbincang
sebelum kertas kerja disediakan dan dibentangkan dalam mesyuarat kabinet pada
Oktober ini,” kata beliau.
Beliau berkata demikian kepada pemberita selepas merasmikan Seminar Transformasi
Ke Arah Ekonomi Berpendapatan Tinggi Melalui Sistem Upah Yang Dikaitkan Dengan
Produktiviti atau Productivity Linked Wage System (PLWS) di sini hari ini.
Dalam pada itu, Subramaniam dalam ucapannya memberitahu, pengukuran prestasi
atau produktiviti yang dihasilkan oleh pekerja dalam pemberian upah dapat
menggalakkan mereka untuk menjadi lebih produktif dan cemerlang.
Menyedari kepentingan itu katanya, kerajaan menggalakkan para majikan dan pekerja
menerima pakai PLWS supaya boleh meningkatkan produktiviti, mengawal kos dan
meningkatkan daya saing negara.
‘‘Laporan Guna Tenaga Kebangsaan yang telah dijalankan oleh kementerian
menunjukkan syarikat yang melaksanakan PLWS pada tahun 2008 ialah 71,547
syarikat, 2009 (72,602) dan sehingga Jun tahun ini (72,841).
‘‘Bilangan pekerja yang telah menikmati faedah pelaksanaan PLWS pada tahun 2008
pula ialah seramai 2.62 juta orang, 2009 (2.78 juta orang) dan sehingga Jun tahun ini
(2.81 juta orang).
‘‘Ini bermakna sepanjang tempoh 2008 hingga Jun tahun ini, jumlah syarikat yang
melaksanakan PLWS dan pekerja yang menikmati faedah dari pelaksanaan itu telah
meningkat setiap tahun,” jelas beliau.
Bagi menggalakkan penyertaan syarikat dalam PLWS, sejumlah lapan bengkel secara
interaktif dengan mensasarkan sebanyak 300 majikan yang belum melaksanakan PLWS
akan diadakan pada tahun ini.
44
Tambah beliau, pihak kementerian juga bercadang memberikan sijil pengiktirafan
kepada syarikat-syarikat yang melaksanakan PLWS pada Majlis Hari Pekerja pada
tahun depan.
45
ARKIB : 10/08/2010
Malaysia akan wujud model gaji minimum sendiri
10/08/2010 2:34pm
SHAH ALAM 10 Ogos - Malaysia akan mewujudkan model gaji minimum tersendiri
berdasarkan kepada kedudukan ekonomi negara serta mengambil kira kepentingan
pekerja dan majikan, kata Menteri Sumber Manusia Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam hari ini.
Beliau berkata, cadangan model gaji minimum itu yang mengambil kira faktor sektor
pekerjaan nasional dan serantau akan dibawa ke mesyuarat Jemaah Menteri akhir
Oktober ini bagi mendapat arahan selanjutnya.
"Pungutan data mengenai gaji minimum di setiap sektor pekerjaan di negara ini
sudahpun dibuat dan kementerian akan berjumpa dengan wakil setiap sektor untuk
bincang (cadangan mewujudkan model gaji minimum) sebelum kertas Kabinet bagi
tujuan itu disediakan,” katanya kepada pemberita selepas merasmikan Seminar
Transformasi Ke arah Ekonomi Berpendapatan Tinggi Melalui Sistem Upah Yang
Dikaitkan Dengan Produktiviti (PLWS) di sini.
Mengenai tuntutan Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) yang mahu kerajaan
membincangkan pengurangan kos pengambilan pembantu rumah Indonesia sebanyak
RM8,000 yang disifatkan terlalu tinggi, Subramaniam berkata, kementerian sedang
membincangkan perkara itu dengan Indonesia. - Bernam
46
ARKIB : 09/08/2010
Tolak bayaran minimum RM800 legakan wanita bekerja
KEPUTUSAN kerajaan menolak cadangan yang menetapkan gaji minimum pembantu
rumah warga Indonesia sebanyak RM800 sebulan benar-benar melegakan golongan
wanita bekerja. Sebelum ini, ruangan Forum akhbar ini pernah beberapa kali
menyiarkan kebimbangan wanita bekerja terhadap pelaksanaan gaji minimum tersebut.
Menurut mereka, gaji pembantu rumah warga Indonesia sekarang iaitu sekitar RM450
hingga RM600 sebulan jika dinaikkan kepada RM800 akan menyebabkan ramai wanita
terpaksa berhenti kerja untuk mengurus rumah tangga. Ini kerana rata-rata mereka tidak
mampu membiayai gaji minimum tersebut.
Jika ramai wanita terpaksa berhenti kerja, maka ia boleh menjejaskan pertumbuhan
ekonomi negara kerana tenaga wanita merupakan antara penyumbang utama kepada
pembangunan negara ini.
Ia ditegaskan oleh Menteri Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat, Datuk Seri
Shahrizat Abdul Jalil yang pernah berkata, pelaksanaan gaji minimum itu akan
menyebabkan ramai wanita bekerja yang sudah berkeluarga dan menggunakan khidmat
pembantu rumah warga Indonesia menarik diri daripada pasaran pekerjaan untuk
menguruskan rumah tangga.
Keadaan itu akan menyebabkan penyertaan wanita dalam pasaran pekerjaan menurun
daripada 45.7 peratus sekarang. Kesannya, ia akan menyebabkan penurunan kadar
pertumbuhan ekonomi negara kerana tenaga wanita adalah antara aset pembangunan
yang diperlukan di negara ini.
Selain itu, memang tidak wajar gaji minimum itu dilaksanakan memandangkan kualiti
kerja pembantu rumah warga Indonesia sekarang kurang memuaskan hati dan tidak
setimpal dengan gaji mereka.
Penulis teringat rungutan seorang teman sepejabat yang memendam rasa melihat
kerenah pembantu rumahnya dari Medan yang tidak tahu buat kerja.
"Apa sangatlah kerja yang dia (pembantu rumahnya) lakukan. Nak suruh masak... tak
tahu...nak suruh gosok baju pun tak tahu... habis baju aku yang mahal-mahal terbakar
dibuatnya. Makan minum pun, aku (majikan) yang tanggung. Malah duit tambang tiket
AirAsia balik kampung pun, aku belikan,"rungutnya kepada penulis.
Sepatutnya kerajaan Indonesia memikirkan dengan teliti pelbagai perkara sebelum
melontarkan cadangan tersebut. Perlu difahami bahawa Akta Kerja 1955 di negara ini
tidak menetapkan gaji minimum untuk mana-mana sektor pekerjaan.
Selain itu, adalah tidak adil memberi gaji minimum RM800 sebulan kepada amah yang
boleh dikatakan langsung tidak menggunakan wang gajinya untuk keperluan harian.
47
Ini kerana amah tinggal bersama majikan, jadi mereka tidak perlu membayar sewa
rumah, selain makan minum ditanggung sepenuhnya oleh majikan.
Jika mahu dibuat perbandingan, nasib amah di negara ini jauh lebih baik daripada
pengawal keselamatan atau pekerja am rendah rakyat tempatan yang masih menerima
gaji purata RM400 sebulan, dan dengan gaji sebanyak itu juga mereka perlu membiayai
banyak perkara termasuk sewa rumah dan belanja dapur keluarga.
Sebagai negara mengamalkan konsep ekonomi terbuka, gaji bagi sesuatu sektor
ditentukan oleh daya pasaran sedia ada, bukannya ditetapkan oleh persetujuan antara
kerajaan yang dicapai menerusi Memorandum Persefahaman (MoU). Amalan yang ada
sekarang perlu diteruskan dan tidak perlu dipinda walaupun didesak atau diasak oleh
pihak tertentu.
48
PENYELARASAN GAJI MINIMUM
Headline: Rang penetapan gaji minimum ke Parlimen
Publication: BH
Date of publication: May 2, 2011
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 008
IPOH: Kementerian Sumber Manusia akan membentangkan Rang Undang-Undang Majlis
Konsultasi Gaji Minimum Negara pada sesi Parlimen akan datang untuk menyelaras dan
menetapkan gaji minimum pekerja sektor swasta di negara ini.
Pelaksanaan rang undang-undang itu akan memberi kuasa kepada kementerian dan majlis itu
untuk membuat apa yang perlu bagi menetap serta menyelaraskan gaji di kalangan pekerja
sektor swasta di negara ini.
Menterinya, Datuk Dr S Subramaniam, berkata majlis itu juga mempunyai kuasa untuk
memastikan apa yang ditetapkan dipatuhi oleh sektor swasta.
"Selepas majlis itu ditubuhkan, satu pengumuman akan dibuat supaya gaji di sektor swasta
mampu diselaraskan mengikut kesesuaian kos sara hidup masa kini," katanya selepas
sambutan Hari Pekerja CUEPACS peringkat kebangsaan, di Stadium Indera Mulia, di sini,
semalam.
Beliau mengulas cadangan penyelarasan gaji minimum terhadap pekerja di sektor swasta.
Kajian kementerian itu sebelum ini yang membabitkan 1.3 juta pekerja di negara ini
menunjukkan 33.8 peratus daripadanya menerima gaji kurang daripada RM700 sebulan, iaitu di
bawah kadar kemiskinan RM720 sebulan.
Dalam perkembangan lain, Subramaniam juga meminta perkhidmatan sektor awam memberi
tumpuan terhadap kaedah penyelarasan dan penstrukturan semula proses penyampaian sedia
ada.
"Kerajaan sedar, kita perlu membuat beberapa perkara untuk mengurangkan birokrasi. Jadi,
ada banyak agensi berkongsi dalam sektor perkhidmatan untuk memastikan proses
penyampaian itu diperhalusi dan diperincikan supaya tidak terperangkap dalam sistem birokrasi
sedia ada," katanya.
Pada majlis itu, Pusat Perubatan Universiti Malaya (PPUM) memenangi Anugerah Majikan
Prihatin CUEPACS, manakala Anugerah CUEPACS Bahagian Contoh dimenangi CUEPACS
Bahagian Wilayah Persekutuan.
1 Headline: PPKKM mohon tangguh 6 bulan laksana gaji baru
Publication: BH
Date of publication: Mar 7, 2011
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 008
KUALA LUMPUR: Persatuan Perkhidmatan Kawalan Keselamatan Malaysia (PPKKM) meminta
kerajaan memberi kelonggaran selama enam bulan terhadap pelaksanaan kenaikan gaji
minimum bagi kira-kira 150,000 pengawal keselamatan di seluruh negara yang sepatutnya
berkuatkuasa 1 Januari lalu.
Ahli Jawatankuasa Pusat PPKKM, M Nagoor Hashan Shahiboo, berkata persatuan dalam
mesyuaratnya, baru-baru ini menetapkan tuntutan supaya Kementerian Sumber Manusia dan
Jabatan Buruh tidak mengambil tindakan penguatkuasaan sepanjang tempoh itu.
Beliau berkata, ia perlu untuk membolehkan syarikat kawalan keselamatan membuat
persediaan melaksanakan kenaikan gaji minimum, termasuk melakukan penyesuaian dan
penyelarasan terhadap kadar harga perkhidmatan yang dikenakan kepada pelanggan masingmasing.
"Tanpa penyesuaian dan penyelarasan terhadap kadar harga perkhidmatan pengawal
keselamatan yang dikenakan kepada pelanggan, adalah mustahil untuk syarikat melaksanakan
kenaikan gaji minimum itu walaupun bersetuju dengan pengumuman kerajaan.
"Sejak kenaikan gaji minimum pengawal keselamatan diumumkan dalam Bajet 2011, belum ada
agensi kerajaan yang membuat penyesuaian dan penyelarasan kadar harga baru. Kira-kira 40
peratus daripada 150,000 pengawal keselamatan bertugas dalam kontrak kerajaan.
Bagaimanapun, persatuan ada menerima surat bertarikh 14 Februari lalu daripada Kementerian
Pelajaran yang memaklumkan mereka sedang menyemak dan membuat pengiraan semula
kadar gaji pengawal keselamatan mereka," katanya.
2 Headline: Gaji minimum swasta diselaras Jun
Publication: BM
Date of publication: Oct 17, 2010
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 008
Byline / Author: Oleh Nahar Tajri
SUNGAI PETANI: Penyelarasan gaji minimum sektor swasta akan dimulakan pada Jun atau
Julai 2011 selepas kerajaan meneliti kaedah sesuai pelaksanaannya menerusi penubuhan
Majlis Penetapan Gaji Kebangsaan (MPGK) yang bakal dibentangkan pada sesi Parlimen akan
datang.
Menteri Sumber Manusia, Datuk Dr S Subramaniam, berkata had minimum gaji kakitangan
swasta akan diputuskan selepas mendapat kelulusan Kabinet dan akan dibincangkan secara
terperinci dari segi kaedah dan kesesuaiannya.
"Kita akan tubuhkan Majlis Penetapan Gaji Kebangsaan. Namun sebelum itu, satu akta akan
digubal dan dibentangkan pada sesi Parlimen akan datang.
"Kalau semua berjalan lancar, kita putuskan pelaksanaannya pada Jun atau Julai tahun depan,"
katanya selepas Majlis Konvokesyen Ketiga Universiti Aimst, di sini, semalam.
Hadir sama, Presiden MIC yang juga Canselor Aimst, Datuk Seri S Samy Vellu. Lebih 300
graduan menerima diploma dan ijazah masing-masing dalam bidang Sains, Perubatan dan
Kejuruteraan.
Mengulas lanjut pembentangan Bajet 2011 oleh Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Razak,
kelmarin, Subramaniam berkata, kira-kira 83 peratus daripada 150,000 pengawal keselamatan
akan mendapat manfaat.
Katanya, pelarasan gaji minimum bagi pengawal keselamatan antara RM500 hingga RM800 itu
mampu memberi impak positif ke atas usaha kementerian bagi mengurangkan tahap
kebergantungan kepada pekerja asing dalam sektor itu pada masa depan.
"Pelarasan ini mengikut empat kumpulan iaitu di kawasan A kenaikan gaji pokok kepada
RM800 bagi Pulau Pinang, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya dan Johor Selatan; kumpulan B
kenaikan RM600 bagi negeri Melaka, Negeri Sembilan, Perak, Pahang, Terengganu, Sarawak
dan Johor Utara. Bagi kumpulan C kenaikan RM550 bagi negeri Sabah, Wilayah Persekutuan
Labuan serta kumpulan D kenaikan RM500 bagi negeri, Kedah, Kelantan dan Perlis.
"Ini keputusan yang amat baik kepada sektor ini dan sangat membantu dalam meningkatkan
pendapatan pengawal keselamatan yang sebelum ini bergaji rendah. Ia juga sekali gus
menunjukkan kerajaan peka dan amat prihatin terhadap tuntutan sektor ini yang turut
memainkan peranan dalam pembangunan negara," katanya.
REAKSI
Bajet 2011
"Kerajaan harus memastikan bahawa tiada kelompok masyarakat yang tercicir ketika
3 pelaksanaan transformasi ekonomi bagi meningkatkan pendapatan rakyat"
Prof Dr Mohamed Mustafa Ishak
Naib Canselor Universiti Utara Malaysia
"Pembinaan infrastruktur mencipta banyak peluang pekerjaan untuk penduduk tempatan,
mengurangkan kos pengangkutan bagi golongan peniaga dan menarik minat pelabur luar untuk
melabur dalam negara"
Prof Ahmad Zubaidi Baharumshah
Pakar ekonomi Universiti Putra Malaysia
"Kita harap mahasiswa tempatan terutama dalam bidang ekonomi, syariah dan perniagaan
dapat menghayati agenda kerajaan dalam menjadikan Malaysia hab kewangan Islam terulung
di dunia"
Datuk Wan Mohamad Sheikh Abdul Aziz
Ketua Pengarah Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia
"Kerajaan negeri memberi komitmen akan bekerjasama dengan Pusat menjayakan semua
program pembangunan direncana di bawah Bajet 2011"
Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim
Menteri Besar Selangor
4 Headline: Kenaikan gaji pekerja ladang bantu kurang kes kemiskinan
Publication: BH
Date of publication: Jun 1, 2007
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 10
SELEPAS kerajaan mengumumkan kenaikan gaji lebih sejuta kakitangan awam, berkuat kuasa
awal bulan depan, ada pekerja terutama dari sektor perladangan merungut kerana tidak
berpeluang menikmati kenaikan gaji dan elaun. Namun, bermula hari ini kira-kira 30,000 pekerja
ladang seluruh negara boleh menarik nafas lega apabila mereka turut menikmati gaji minimum
RM500 hingga RM600 sebulan, berbanding RM450 sebelum ini selepas pelarasan gaji
sembilan peratus diluluskan. Selain menerima tunggakan gaji 17 bulan kepada setiap pekerja
berikutan penyelarasan tangga gaji baru itu, mereka juga diberi faedah lain seperti insentif
kehadiran RM95 sebulan dan elaun perumahan RM95 sebulan. Jika dicampur semua
pendapatan yang mereka peroleh setiap bulan, bermakna golongan itu melepasi Pendapatan
Garis Kemiskinan (PGK) yang ditetapkan, iaitu RM691 sebulan. Penyelarasan gaji yang bakal
dinikmati 4,800 penoreh getah, 25,200 pekerja ladang dan pekerja am berkerja di 384 ladang
dan 115 kilang di Semenanjung adalah hasil perjanjian untuk tempoh tiga tahun sehingga 31
Mei 2010. Walaupun pendapatan baru itu tidaklah begitu tinggi, mereka harus bersyukur,
sekurang-kurangnya lebih baik daripada kira-kira 46,000 pesara kerajaan yang kini menikmati
pencen kurang daripada RM500 sebulan, walaupun selepas kenaikan 17.5 peratus, iaitu
separuh daripada 35 peratus kenaikan bagi Kumpulan Sokongan II seperti diumumkan, barubaru ini.
Perjuangan menuntut gaji tetap bagi pekerja ladang dan penoreh getah sebenarnya sudah
dikemukakan sejak akhir 1980-an lagi dan hanya pada 2000, Kabinet bersetuju
menyelesaikannya. Bagi pekerja ladang misalnya, mereka diberi gaji tetap bulanan menerusi
sistem upah pekerja ladang bermula 1 Januari 2001, apabila gaji minimum ketika itu ditetapkan
RM325 sebulan. Kerajaan merestui sistem gaji itu berdasarkan hasil kajian Universiti Malaya
yang dilantik sebagai perunding bebas. Sebelum itu, pekerja ladang kelapa sawit, misalnya
dibayar gaji berdasarkan upah harian iaitu RM11.50 sehari, tetapi menerusi kaedah baru,
pendapatan mereka lebih terjamin. Kelmarin, mereka sekali lagi menikmati kenaikan itu
berikutan persetujuan dicapai antara Persatuan Pengeluar-Pengeluar Pertanian Tanah Melayu
(Mapa) dan Kesatuan Kebangsaan Pekerja Ladang (NUPW) dengan menandatangani
perjanjian bersama ke-10 di Kementerian Sumber Manusia di Putrajaya. Mengikut perjanjian itu,
pendapatan penoreh getah lebih terjamin dan mereka menerima gaji RM350 sebulan, jika
berlaku bencana alam atau hasil tuaian tidak memberangsangkan. Bagaimanapun, seperti
perjanjian terdahulu, majikan dan kesatuan sekerja masih mengekalkan kadar bayaran upah
dikaitkan dengan produktiviti atau lebih dikenali sebagai Sistem Gaji Berasaskan Produktiviti
(PLWS). Ia menunjukkan PLWS masih diterima pakai bagi meningkatkan produktiviti dan daya
saing dalam sektor itu.
Sejak gaji bulanan diperkenalkan kepada golongan itu, kita tidak lagi mendengar rungutan,
bantahan dan tunjuk perasaan seperti lazim kedengaran pada 1990-an, sekali gus wujud
keharmonian antara pekerja dan majikan. Selepas enam tahun pelaksanaan skim gaji bulanan,
terbukti kaedah itu menjamin kehidupan lebih baik bagi golongan berkenaan, sama seperti
rakan mereka di sektor lain. Kita berharap sektor pertanian dan perladangan terus berkembang
sejajar dengan hasrat kerajaan menjadikannya antara penyumbang utama ekonomi negara
dengan penekanan terus diberi bagi merevolusikan sektor itu dalam Rancangan Malaysia
Kesembilan. Malah, kenaikan gaji dan keselesaan hidup pekerja ladang diharap dapat
5 mengatasi masalah sebahagian daripada 48,183 keluarga miskin tegar di seluruh negara yang
dijangka terkeluar daripada garis kemiskinan menjelang 2010.
(END)
6 Headline: 200,000 terima RM480 sebulan sejak 16 tahun (HL)
Publication: BH
Date of publication: Sep 26, 2006
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 01
Byline / Author: Oleh Shamshul Azree Samshir; Mohd Feroz Abu Bakar
PUTRAJAYA: Lebih 200,000 kakitangan awam dari kumpulan sokongan dan rendah dikatakan
masih mendapat gaji minimum RM480.85 sebulan kerana kadar itu tidak pernah disemak sejak
Skim Saraan Baru (SSB) diperkenalkan pada 1990.
Kebanyakan mereka seperti atendan hospital, pembantu am rendah dan tukang kebun, tidak
mendapat anjakan gaji kerana gagal dalam ujian Penilaian Tahap Kecekapan (PTK).
Ujian PTK diperkenalkan pada 2003 apabila Skim Saraan Malaysia (SSM) menggantikan SSB
pada Oktober 2002.
Pengerusi Semakan Gaji Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam (Cuepacs),
Omar Osman, berkata sebelum PTK, gaji asas mereka juga tidak disemak sejak SSB
diperkenal 16 tahun lalu.
"Dengan kenaikan kos sara hidup serta inflasi, sukar untuk mereka menanggung anak dan
isteri. Di bandar, ramai bekerja sambilan sebagai pengawal keselamatan, atendan pam minyak,
pemandu teksi, penjual sate dan burger," katanya kepada Berita Harian semalam.
Omar berkata, Cuepacs mahu kerajaan memberi pertimbangan serius menaikkan gaji
kumpulan kakitangan awam rendah sesuai dengan peningkatan kos hidup dan utiliti sekarang.
Malah, Majlis Kebangsaan Kesatuan Pekerja-Pekerja Kakitangan Rendah Kerajaan (MKTR)
menganggap kenaikan gaji walaupun cuma RM10 amat dihargai oleh kumpulan rendah yang
kebanyakannya perlu menyara keluarga dan anak bersekolah.
Beliau berkata, cadangan untuk meminta kenaikan sehingga 40 peratus gaji bagi kakitangan
Gred 1 hingga 16 amat wajar dengan kos sara hidup yang tinggi terutama di bandar besar.
Kumpulan Gred 1 hingga 16 kebanyakannya lulusan Darjah Enam, Tingkatan Dua atau Sijil
Rendah Pelajaran (SRP)/Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) serta bertugas sebagai pembantu
am rendah, atendan kesihatan, tukang masak, pemandu dan atendan haiwan.
"Gaji maksimum kumpulan itu tidak sampai RM1,000, walaupun bertugas antara 20 hingga 25
tahun," katanya yang juga Timbalan Presiden Satu Cuepacs.
Cuepacs turut mencadangkan kenaikan 30 peratus untuk kakitangan Gred 17 hingga 40
(lulusan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) dan ke atas), kenaikan 20 peratus untuk Gred 41 hingga
54 (lulusan ijazah sarjana muda) dan 10 peratus (Jawatan Utama Sektor Awam/Jusa).
Sebagai contoh, jika pembantu am rendah (PAR) diberi kenaikan 40 peratus atau RM192, gaji
asas mereka ialah RM672 sebulan.
Omar berkata, cadangan kenaikan gaji itu akan diserahkan kepada Perdana Menteri, Datuk
7 Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi yang juga Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Kabinet Mengenai
Pengurusan dan Gaji Pekerja di Sektor Awam, Disember ini.
Sementara itu, Setiausaha Agung MKTR, Ahmad Shah Mohd Zin, berkata penyelarasan gaji
kakitangan rendah perlu mengambil kira maklumat dari Unit Perancang Ekonomi (EPU) yang
menyebut RM661 sebagai pendapatan golongan miskin di negara ini.
"Kita sudah menghantar memorandum asas yang antara lain meminta gaji diselaraskan pada
kadar 10 hingga 40 peratus.
"Satu memorandum yang lebih komprehensif dengan mengambil kira skil gaji, gred dan kelas
akan dihantar. Setakat ini, 80 peratus memorandum lengkap itu siap dan ia dikemukakan akhir
bulan ini," katanya.
(END)
8 Headline: Cadangan MTUC penyelarasan gaji minimum RM900 tak sesuai
Publication: BH
Date of publication: Jun 29, 2007
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 14
Byline / Author: Oleh Pak Long
SAYA ingin mengulas cadangan Kongres Kesatuan Sekerja Malaysia (MTUC) untuk
menyeragamkan gaji minimum bagi pekerja swasta pada tahap RM900 sebulan dan elaun sara
hidup RM300 sebulan.
Saya berpendapat cadangan untuk menetapkan gaji minimum itu adalah baik kerana kini ada
syarikat yang mengambil kesempatan membayar gaji bawah kadar munasabah.
Namun, saya juga berpendapat kadar RM900 itu agak tinggi jika diselaraskan untuk semua
sektor. Memandangkan pekerja swasta terbahagi kepada pelbagai sektor, seperti kilang
pembuatan, pembinaan, peladangan dan buruh, lebih wajar penetapan gaji minimum itu
dibezakan mengikut sektor.
Saya menyatakan demikian kerana ada sektor yang memerlukan pekerja bekerja lebih masa
yang lama dan atas sebab demikian pulangan mereka agak tinggi. Sebagai contoh, pengawal
keselamatan yang bekerja selama 104 jam sebulan akan menerima kira-kira RM1,970 sebulan,
tidak termasuk kerja lebih masa pada hari kelepasan dan hari rehat.
Jika termasuk elaun hari kelepasan dan rehat, mereka akan menerima kira-kira RM2,100
sebulan. Sebagai pengawal keselamatan yang telah bersara, saya terfikir cadangan MTUC itu
tidak begitu munasabah.
Jika pengawal keselamatan pun boleh mendapat gaji bulanan sebanyak itu, maka teh tarik pun
mungkin dinaikkan sehingga RM2.50 segelas dan roti canai RM3.00 sekeping! Jika semua
pihak mendapat gaji terlalu tinggi dan harga barang juga naik, maka kadar inflasi kita juga akan
naik.
Saya berharap MTUC akan mengkaji secara terperinci sebelum meminta kerajaan membuat
pertimbangan gaji minimum ini.
PAK LONG,
Petaling Jaya.
(END)
9 Headline: Gesa gaji minimum
Publication: HM
Date of publication: Feb 8, 2011
Section heading: Main Section
Page number: 012
Byline / Author: Oleh Zatul Iffah Zolkiply
KUALA LUMPUR: Kongres Kesatuan Pekerja Dalam Perkhidmatan Awam (Cuepacs)
menggesa kerajaan melaksanakan skim gaji minimum bagi kakitangan awam di negara ini.
Presidennya, Datuk Omar Osman (gambar) berkata, gaji minimum perlu ditetapkan bagi
kakitangan sektor awam terutama Kumpulan Sokongan 11 iaitu Gred 1 hingga 16
memandangkan gaji mereka masih di bawah garis kemiskinan RM720 sebulan demi
memastikan golongan berkenaan dapat hidup dalam lebih selesa seiring dengan peningkatan
kos taraf hidup.
"Isu gaji minimum sudah lama diperkatakan. Ia perlu dilaksanakan memandangkan kali terakhir
kerajaan melakukan penyelarasan gaji adalah pada 2007 dan kerajaan perlu menyemak
semula gaji minimum serta menyelaraskannya dengan sektor swasta.
"Jika diikutkan gaji asas golongan ini berada di bawah kemiskinan iaitu RM647. Penyemakan
dan penyelarasan gaji perlu dinaikkan daripada RM647 kepada sekurang-kurangnya kepada
RM850 atau RM920 bagi membolehkan golongan berkenaan meneruskan kehidupan," katanya
ketika Kursus Pemantapan Disiplin dan Integriti Kesatuan Pegawai Pengangkutan Jalan
Semenanjung Malaysia di Pusat Belia Antarabangsa di sini, semalam.
Beliau berkata, jika dilaksanakan, penyelarasan gaji dapat meningkatkan produktiviti kakitangan
awam apabila dapat memberi tumpuan kepada kerja harian mereka.
Katanya, gaji yang rendah dan kos sara hidup tinggi terutama bagi mereka di bandar
menyebabkan kakitangan awam melakukan kerja sambilan bagi menampung kos hidup
sehingga menjejaskan produktiviti mereka dan berharap Makmal Gaji Minimum yang akan
berlangsung di Pusat Konvensyen Antarabangsa Putrajaya (PICC) hari ini, 11 dan 14 Februari
ini dapat mencari rumusan terbaik bagi menyelesaikan masalah gaji rendah di kalangan
penjawat awam.
Dalam pada itu, Omar turut meminta kerajaan menimbangkan semula keputusan menamatkan
kontrak kira-kira 3,000 kakitangan awam terutama Kementerian Pelajaran yang terdiri daripada
pekerja rendah awam walaupun ada sudah berkhidmat lebih 20 tahun.
Katanya, pihaknya sedia maklum dengan syarat kakitangan kontrak kerana ia hanya bersifat
sementara dan boleh ditamatkan jika habis tempoh atau tidak diperlukan lagi sama ada berada
pada sektor awam atau swasta.
"Dalam hal ini, saya akan cuba berbincang dengan Timbalan Perdana Menteri, Tan Sri
Muhyiddin Yassin yang juga Menteri Pelajaran secepat mungkin bagi membantu mereka yang
tidak disambung perkhidmatan mereka.
"Saya berharap kerajaan menimbangkan semula perkara ini. Mereka mempunyai keluarga dan
komitmen lain jadi penamatan perkhidmatan mereka memberikan kesan besar," katanya.
10 Headline: Gaji bomba naik tahun depan
Publication: BH
Date of publication: Oct 8, 2004
Section heading: Ekonomi
Page number: 08
Byline / Author: By Salina Abdullah
SHAH ALAM: Semua kakitangan Jabatan Bomba dan Penyelamat akan menikmati kenaikan
gaji sekurang-kurangnya RM100, mulai awal tahun depan berikutan penstrukturan semula skim
perjawatan jabatan berkenaan.
Berikutan itu, syarat kemasukan ke Jabatan Bomba dan Penyelamat ditingkatkan dengan
kelayakan minimum Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) berbanding Penilaian Menengah Rendah
(PMR) ketika ini untuk ahli bomba, diploma untuk jawatan pegawai dan sarjana muda untuk
jawatan penguasa.
Pada masa ini, anggota dengan kelulusan PMR menerima gaji asas RM543 sebulan dan SPM
(RM600). Selain gaji asas, anggota bomba menerima pelbagai elaun menjadikan pendapatan
kira-kira RM1,000 sebulan.
Timbalan Menteri Perumahan dan Kerajaan Tempatan, Datuk Azizah Muhd Dun, berkata
penstrukturan semula itu membolehkan kakitangan jabatan mendapat gaji lebih tinggi dan
peluang kenaikan pangkat, sekali gus menggalakkan orang ramai menyertai perkhidmatan
berkenaan.
"Langkah ini juga satu bentuk motivasi kepada 11,000 kakitangan jabatan, terutama lebih 6,000
anggota berkelulusan PMR dan SPM.
"Perkara ini dalam pertimbangan akhir Jabatan Perkhidmatan Awam (JPA) dan dijangka
diluluskan sebelum penghujung tahun ini. Semua anggota jabatan ini akan menerima gaji baru
mulai tahun depan," katanya.
Bagaimanapun, katanya, anggota sedia ada dengan kelulusan PMR perlu menduduki
peperiksaan khas untuk menikmati kenaikan gaji berkenaan.
Beliau berkata demikian selepas merasmikan sambutan Hari Anggota Bomba 2004 di sini,
semalam mewakili Menterinya, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting.
Selain penyelarasan gaji itu, Azizah berkata, Jabatan Bomba dan Penyelamat memohon elaun
tambahan antara RM100 dan RM200 bagi 11 bidang kepakaran, termasuk menyelam,
penerbangan, penyiasatan kebakaran dan pendakwaan.
"Jabatan kekurangan anggota. Jika kita mahu menambah anggota, sekurang- kurangnya kita
perlu lebih 11,000 anggota lagi dan ini membabitkan kos tinggi. Ini mustahil dilaksanakan.
"Oleh itu, kita bergantung kepada anggota sedia ada. Pemberian elaun tambahan kepada
anggota yang mempunyai kepakaran dilihat sebagai insentif dan motivasi kepada mereka,"
katanya.
Sementara itu, Ketua Pengarah Jabatan Bomba dan Penyelamat, Datuk Jaafar SidekTambi
11 berkata, jabatan akan menjalankan temu duga terbuka bagi pengambilan anggota mulai tahun
depan yang dijangka dapat menjimatkan masa dan kos.
(END)
Sumber : http://www.nstemedia.com
Tarikh Akses : 5 Julai 2011
12 J KA
RUJUKAN
Minimum Wage Available : http://www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimum_wage (5 Julai 2011) Dr Mustafa Dakian Upah minimum wajar dilaksanakan di Malaysia?. Dewan Ekonomi : 38‐39 ; Julai 2000. Utusan Malaysia.[Online] Available : http://www.utusanmalaysia.com.my Nst Emedia. [Online] Available : http://www.nstemedia.com.my 
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