October 5, 2017
QUEZON CITY – Starting today October 5, the minimum wage in the National Capital Region is now P512 a day after a P21 salary increase into the basic pay announced by the wage board two weeks ago.
Under the wage order No. 21 issued September 14 by the seven man members of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board-National Capital Region, the minimum wage for non-agriculture workers will now be P512.
Stated in the same wage order, those workers in the agriculture plantation and non-plantation and those in the retail, service and manufacturing sectors employing less than 10 workers will be receiving P475 a day.
More than 5 million minimum-waged workers from Metro Manila and workers from Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Batangas working in the metropolis are bound to benefit from the wage hike.
Inspite of the increase, however, wage petitioner Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) who filed in June a P184 additional increase said the P21 increase will not trickle down the economic wealth the workers help created and is inadequate to meet the daily nutritional and survival needs of the standard family of five amid rising the cost services and surging prices of basic commodities.
“The P21 increase will not lift workers and their families from living below poverty. This 4 per cent increase is very small compared to the recent increases in prices of electricity, water, LPG used in cooking and in the price of gasoline. This increase will not definitely close the widening gap between the rich and the poor. There is no shared prosperity here,” said Alan Tanjusay ALU-TUCP spokesperson.
Citing the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and the National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC), Tanjusay said the buying power of the new P512 daily minimum wage is only P362 a day.
Because of this, the ALU-TUCP is seeking additional P500 monthly of P16 a day subsidy from President Rodrigo Duterte utilizing the unspent and unused budget from different government departments and agencies to help minimum-waged earners cope with the rising inflation.
“It is important for workers to cope with the rising cost of living and meet the basic daily food needs of workers and their families because they are essential partner of employers and capitalists to helping and sustaining the country’s economic growth at a competitive level. Yet the wealth created remains at the top and it’s not trickling down,” Tanjusay said.