Impact of COVID-19 played role in minimum wage adjustment - Labour Dept

The Labour Department said that among some of the factors considered during the adjustment of the minimum wage was the fact that there had been no negative impact on employment since its implementation, despite warnings from some quarters that this would be the case.

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JOHANNESBURG – The employment and labour department has announced that the national minimum wage will increase by 4.5% from R20.76 to R21.69 from 1 March.

This followed a review of the hourly rate by the national minimum wage commission that was set up to adjust the amount yearly.

The system was implemented in South Africa in January 2019 at a level of R20 per hour.

The Labour Department said that among some of the factors considered during the adjustment of the minimum wage was the fact that there had been no negative impact on employment since its implementation, despite warnings from some quarters that this would be the case.

Chief director of labour relations, Thembinkosi Mkhaliphi, has told Eyewitness News that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on workers and businesses also played a role in the determination.

“Many of the workers are struggling now, it's not only business that has been affected by this.”

The national minimum wage is payable for ordinary hours of work and does not include allowances such as transport, food or accommodation, tips, bonuses and gifts, among others.

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