BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB-CAR) recently approved a P50-P60 increase in the daily pay of minimum wage earners in the different parts of the region as part of the ongoing efforts of the government to mitigate the effects of the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and other internal and external factors that had heavily impacted the country’s economy over the past two years.
Once approved by the National Wages and Productivity Commission, the aforesaid wage increase will be implemented in 2 tranches where the P30 increase in the daily wage of workers in Baguio City, Tabuk City and La Trinidad will take effect thereby increasing the minimum wage in the said areas from P35o to P380.
Further, the P40 increase in the daily wage of workers in other areas in the region will also be applied to increase the prevailing minimum wage in the said places from P340 to P380.
Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum wage in all areas in the region will be P400 daily after the P20 balance of the approved increase will be effected as the same will already be across the board for all sectors and areas.
For the ‘kasambahay,’ the monthly minimum wage that was pegged by the RTWPB-CAR is at least P4,500 which will take effect after the approval of the wage order by the National Wages and Productivity Commission.
Earlier, the labor department directed the different regional wage boards in the country to study the possibility of increasing the prevailing daily wages in their respective areas of jurisdiction to help in increasing the take home pay of minimum wage earners for them to cope up with the serious negative effect of the ongoing pandemic and other internal and external factors to the country’s economy.
The last wage increase in the region took effect over two years ago or before the pandemic where the minimum wage was pegged at P350 for minimum wage earners in Baguio City, Tabuk City and La Trinidad and P340 for those employed in other areas in the region.
Regional labor officials claimed that the approval of the new wage order passed through a stringent process of deliberations that considered numerous factors affecting the prevailing situation not only inside the region but also in the country and the global scenario as well as projections for the revival of the heavily impacted global economy.
The wage board is composed of representatives from the concerned government agencies such as the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE); the management sector and the labor sector.
However, employers that have been heavily impacted by the pandemic and those with less than 10 workers can avail of the exemption from the approved wage increase by filing their respective applications for the said purpose which will pass through assessment and evaluation by the labor department prior to their being exempted from the implementation of the wage increase for their workers.