Japanese panel calls for 3% increase in average minimum wage

TOKYO, July 14 (Reuters) – A subcommittee of Japan’s Ministry of Labor on Wednesday recommended that the national average minimum wage be raised from around 3% to nearly $ 8.50 an hour this fiscal year, said a government official.

His recommendation follows repeated calls by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga to raise the country’s minimum wage to 1,000 yen ($ 9.05), as policymakers seek to ensure households can increase consumption when the drag of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy will fade. Read more

The influential sub-committee of the Central Minimum Wage Council of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare proposed to increase the minimum wage from 28 yen to 930 yen ($ 8.42) from 902 yen during from fiscal year 2021 until March next year, a ministry official said.

Under Suga’s predecessor Shinzo Abe, the government increased the minimum wage by 3% for four years until the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, when it remained largely stable. Read more

“It will be better if the minimum wage is increased to some extent, so this is a positive result,” said Taro Saito, executive researcher at the NLI Research Institute.

As policymakers count on wage hikes to support a national economic recovery, calls for a higher minimum wage come at a time when many small and medium-sized businesses are struggling to weather the pandemic.

Saito also added that it was unrealistic to expect the minimum wage to be raised to 1,000 yen at one time.

“Overall, the performance of companies is returning to what it was before the pandemic, so it is the right decision to bring the salary increases back to what they were in normal times,” he said. declared.

($ 1 = 110.4800 yen)

Reporting by Daniel Leussink; Editing by Jacqueline Wong

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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