Calabarzon workers to get P13 pay hike on May 1
SAN PEDRO CITY, Philippines—The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has approved a P13 daily wage increase in the form of an allowance in Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon provinces) to take effect as the nation observes the International Labor Day on May 1.
With the new adjustment, the highest minimum wage is P362.50 a day, according to Rovelinda de la Rosa, secretary of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB).
The present minimum wage in Calabarzon ranges from P267 to P349.50, depending on the industry and the area where the company is situated.
The latest increase, however, will not be integrated into the basic pay and will form what is called the workers’ socioeconomic allowance (SEA). Since it is considered an allowance, “no work [means] no SEA,” De la Rosa explained in a phone interview on Saturday.
Among those who will receive the highest rate are in the nonagriculture sector, particularly in Bacoor and Imus cities in Cavite; in Cainta and Taytay towns in Rizal; and the Laguna Techno Park in Biñan City and in San Pedro City in Laguna.
The new rate is computed based on the 7-percent regional growth rate (between 2011 and 2012) and present poverty incidence in Calabarzon, De la Rosa said.
The P13 increase under Wage Order No. IVA-16 was made public on April 16, the latest since the RTWPB approved the P12.50 daily productivity allowance in 2012.
Under the new wage order, workers earning below P267 a day, like those in small grocery stores, beauty salons and spas or small farm workers, are to receive a P12 basic pay increase in two tranches on May 1 and on Dec. 1.
The militant Pagkakaisa ng Manggagawa sa Timog Katagalugan-Kilusang Mayo Uno (Pamantik-KMU), which has been lobbying for a P125 across-the-board pay increase, assailed the government’s decision.
“It’s just a 50-centavo increase from two years ago. The costs of fuel and basic commodities are not decreasing at all,” said Pamantik-KMU secretary general Wenecito Urgel.
The latest adjustment is also far less than the P75 and P79.50 daily wage hikes sought by “moderate” labor groups, Trade Union Congress of the Philippines and Confederation of Labor and Allied Services, in separate petitions to the wage board in 2013.
It remains far below the P466 daily minimum wage in the adjacent National Capital Region.
De la Rosa, however, said it would benefit 2.5 million wage earners in Calabarzon.
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