The latest round of negotiations on the minimum wage for garment workers has seen unions push for $213 a month, while employers are calling for $196.
Wednesday’s talks ended with unions agreeing to drop their proposed figure from $215 to $213, while employers increased their offer from $194 to $196, the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training said in a press release.
The release added that the General Secretariat of the National Council for Minimum Wages calculated the minimum wage figure for 2023 at $197.86 based on technical specifications and changes in data regarding seven criteria.
On August 24, unions put forward a proposal for the minimum wage of garment factory workers to be raised to $215, while employers pushed for $194 a month for workers.
“It is essential that both sides continue to defend their positions professionally and maturely,” the press release added.
“Unions, in the second meeting, wanted $215 based on inflation, production and profit within the sector,” said Pav Sina, President of Collective Union of Movement of Worker (CUMW).
An inaugural meeting to discuss a new minimum wage for 2023 for the country’s garment workers took place on August 15 and involved union representatives, employers and government representatives.
Topics raised for discussion by all involved parties included inflation, social, family, productivity, profitability, and labour market issues.
Factory workers told Kiripost that although salaries have been rising, it remains difficult as room rents and daily food expenses continue to rise, leaving them struggling to fund their monthly livelihoods.
Previous meetings have been considered a tripartite model mechanism in which employers and workers came together to discuss the minimum and appropriate minimum wage changes from all parties.
The meeting agreed to resume the tripartite talks on September 13 and end them on September 21.