Garment manufactures oppose minimum wage increase


Myanmar's garment manufacturers have signalled their opposition to a proposed national minimum wage of just over US$3 (S$4.05) per day, claiming the increase it represents could force some factories in the vital economic sector to close Asiaone Business reported on 6 July.

The apparel industry's resistance to paying the proposed daily minimum wage drew a sharp rebuke from local labour groups, as well as the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). “The new minimum wage will still leave workers and their dependents just above the global severe poverty line of US$1.25 per person, and many will still struggle to make ends meet,” said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow according to the report.

The Myanmar Garment Manufacturers Association (MGMA), which represents 280 factories employing approximately 200,000 worker met on July 2 after a June 29 announcement by Myanmar's National Minimum Wage Committee proposing that the minimum wage be set at 3,600 kyats (US$3.24) - or 450 kyat per hour - for an eight-hour day.

The committee is made up of government officials as well as business people and worker representatives.

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