Employees in the Philippines want more say in wage hike review

The labour group that has filed a petition for another wage increase wants to play a more active role in discussions with the government.
By: | February 15, 2023

When it comes to discussing a potential wage increase in the country, the Philippines government needs to consider both the needs of employers and employees alike, says labour group Kapatiran ng mga Unyon at Samahang Manggagawa.

This comes after Kapatiran claimed that they have not been consulted by the Department of Labour and Employment (DOLE) about a potential P100 (US$1.82) wage increase, which the labour group filed in December 2022.

Rey Almendras, President of Kapatiran, said, “As the petitioner for the P100 wage increase in the National Capital Region wage board, Kapatiran expects to be among the groups to be consulted.”

According to Labour Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma, various wage boards nationwide have already conducted consultations and reviewed prevailing minimum wage rates although Kapatiran says raising inflation has already cut the P570 (US$10.37) minimum wage in Metro Manila by P88 (US$1.60).

READ: The Philippines remains uncertain on wage hike despite inflation

Echoing Kapatiran’s call for a new round of wage hikes to recover the lost purchasing power of employees due to inflation was Rene Magtubo, Chair of Partido Manggagawa, a political party in the Philippines.

Describing the P33 (US$0.60) minimum wage hike granted last June as having been “effectively wiped out by the runaway inflation”, he said, “We are not yet even talking of employees claiming just a share in the fruits of their labour. From 2001 to 2016, real wages stagnated, but labour productivity increased by 50% and the GDP doubled,” reported The Philippine Star