New wage orders for workers in Region 1 mulled

THE Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board-I (RTWPB-1) is studying the possibility of issuing new wage orders for company and domestic workers following the conclusion of its public consultations.

Department of Labor and Employment-Regional Office I Regional Director and RTWPB-I Chair Nathaniel Lacambra said Wage Order RB 1-19 has turned one year on January 25 while Wage Order RB1-DW-01 is already more than two years old since it took effect on October 2, 2016.

“With the events that transpired within those periods, the Board has deemed it proper to initiate the review of current socio-economic conditions,” Lacambra said.

Public hearings were conducted for Pangasinan and La Union on Feb. 15, and Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur on Feb. 19 to encourage broader representation and insightful dialogue with management and labor representatives.

Some 258 stakeholders were advised of the regional conditions that include inflation rate, poverty incidence, the capacity of employers to pay, investments generated in business name registration, employment situation, requirements of economic development, comparative wages and income, and many others.

“We need to carefully evaluate whether or not new wage rates are needed at this point,” Lacambra said.

The Board wants to increase the purchasing power of workers without compromising the viability of businesses, he told them.

WO No. 19, which took effect on January 25, 2018, fixed the applicable minimum wage rate at P310 for large companies and commercial fishing, P285 for medium enterprises, P265 for small establishments and agricultural plantation and P256 for micro establishments and agricultural non-plantation. 

WO RB1-DW-01, on the other hand, sets the monthly minimum wage of domestic workers in cities and first-class municipalities at P3,500 and at P2,500 for those in other municipalities. (PhilStar Wire Service)

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