National minimum wage to be reviewed annually

Saturday, January 20, 2018

The national minimum wage will be reviewed on 1 May of each year, in line with government’s aim of alleviating poverty in the labour market.

“In the review of [the national minimum wage], the commission which advises the Minister [of Labour] has to take a number of factors into consideration such as inflation, the cost of living, wage levels, wage differentials, productivity, the ability of business to carry on successfully as well as the impact on Small Medium and Micro-sized Enterprises (SMMEs) and employment,” Director: Employment Standards at the Department of Labour Stephen Rathai said.

He said the review process should also promote medium-term targets to reduce wage differentials and alleviation of poverty.

“The regulation will include the procedure for exemption, the obligation on employer to consult with the employees or their trade unions and the criteria for evaluating exemptions,” Rathai said.

He was addressing stakeholders mainly from labour about the soon to be introduced national minimum wage on Friday in Witbank, Mpumalanga.

The objective of the briefing session was to ensure that the national minimum wage, as a new labour policy intervention instrument, is communicated to all the intended beneficiaries such as workers.

This also includes educating the workers on the implications of proposed amendments to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA), the Labour Relations Act (LRA), the Accord on Collective Bargaining and Industrial Action and the Code of Good Practice on Collective Bargaining, Industrial Action and Picketing.

The briefing sessions are being held around the country and started on 9 November 2017. They target all sectors of the economy.

Briefing sessions have been held in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, George, Pietermaritzburg, Richards Bay, Durban, Tzaneen and Polokwane.

The national minimum wage is scheduled for implementation from 1 May 2018.

The agreed national minimum wage at National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC) is pegged at R20 an hour for major sectors, with the exception of sectors such as farm workers and domestic workers. –

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