Saturday, May 21, 2022

Some sectors to be given flexibility in minimum wage, says minister

Affected workers include those who earn an income by doing odd jobs, as well as companies with fewer than five workers and those facing huge losses such as the hospitality and tourism sectors.

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Several employment sectors, including the informal sector, will be given flexibility when the implementation of the RM1,500 minimum wage rate comes into effect on May 1, says Human Resources Minister M Saravanan.

Affected workers include those who earn an income by doing odd jobs, as well as companies with fewer than five workers and those facing huge losses such as the hospitality and tourism sectors, he said.

Saravanan said by emphasising a flexibility similar to that given when the minimum wage order was implemented in 2012, the government would also give a period of one year of flexibility for any party in need which could be extended according to the minister’s purview.

“Odd-job workers are still earning RM500 to RM600. If I force companies to pay them RM1,500 they will soon be out of a job,” he told reporters at the launch of an event in Putrajaya yesterday.

On March 19, Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that Malaysia would implement the RM1,500 minimum wage nationwide starting May 1.

Saravanan said implementing the minimum wage rate was in line with the National Wage Consultative Council Act 2011 (Act 732), which needs to be reviewed every two years.

“If not now, when? The act (Act 732) stipulates that it needs to be reviewed once every two years. If I don’t do it, people will criticise me, that I violate the act,” he said.

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