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Minimum wage to be raised up to $127

Wednesday, November 20, 2013, 12:19 GMT+7
Minimum wage to be raised up to $127
This file photo shows workers at Nissei Company in Ho Chi Minh City

The minimum wage will be raised up to VND2.7 million (US$127) per month next year starting January 1, 2014, according to a new governmental Decree. Under Decree 182/2013 dated November 14 and due to take effect on December 31, 2013, the new minimum wage will be VND250,000-300,000 per month higher than the current minimum wage. There are four minimum wage rates applied for four zones of the country. The rates include VND2.7 million ($127 – the highest) per month for Zone 1, VND2.4 million for Zone 2, VND2.1 million for Zone 3, and VND1.9 million for Zone 4. These wages are applicable to laborers working for enterprises, co-operatives, farms, households, individuals, and organizations of all economic sectors. Wage scale and other allowances set forth by enterprises should be based on minimum wage, according to the decree. The wage paid to a vocational trainee must exceed the minimum wage for the zone by at least 7 percent, and all employers are encouraged to pay their employees higher than the regulated minimum rates, the Decree states.Meet only 66-79% of min living costs Before the Decree was issued, the Vietnam General Confederation of Labor had released forecasts on the minimum living costs in 2014 for all the four zones. According to the forecasts, the cost of living is VND4.1 million ($193) per month for Zone 1, VND3.4 million for Zone 2, VND3 million for Zone 3, and VND2.4 million for Zone 4. Based on the forecasts, it is easy to find that the above increased minimum wages meet only from 66 percent to 79 percent of the minimum living costs in the four zones. Zone 1 covers urban Hanoi and HCM City; Zone 2 covers rural Hanoi and HCM City along with urban Can Tho, Da Nang and Hai Phong; Zone 3 covers provincial cities and the districts of Bac Ninh, Bac Giang, Hai Duong, and Vinh Phuc; and Zone 4 covers the remaining localities.

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