Tk 5,300 | The Daily Star
12:56 AM, November 05, 2013 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:05 AM, November 05, 2013

Tk 5,300

Minimum wage for garment workers fixed

wage

A split garment workers' wage board yesterday voted and finalised its recommendation that Tk 5,300 should be the minimum salary for workers.
Factory owners, who are board members, however, rejected the proposed 76.66 percent minimum salary hike from the existing Tk 3,000.
The board fixed Tk 3,200 as basic pay, Tk 1,280 house rent, and Tk 320 medical allowance. It also included Tk 200 transport allowance and Tk 300 as food subsidies, said judge AK Roy, chairman of the six-member wage board.
Failing to reach a consensus on the minimum salary thrice before, the board in its ninth meeting yesterday went for a vote and the recommendation was passed 4-0, with factory owners in the board refraining from voting.
The nMinimum Wagesew minimum salary and the new salaries for 3.5 million garment workers in seven grades would be effective after a gazette notification in this regard is published.
“The salaries will increase proportionately in other grades,” Roy told journalists at the wage board office on Topkhana Road in Dhaka after the meeting.
“When the board could not reach a consensus, I went for voting, as the board chairman has this right,” said Roy.
Before finalisation of the recommendations, workers' representative Sirajul Islam Rony had agreed to make the minimum salary Tk 6,000. He previously wanted Tk 8,114, Roy said.
But the factory owners' representatives were sticking to Tk 4,250 minimum wage, including food subsidies.
Talking to The Daily Star, owners' representative Arshad Jamal Dipu said the garment makers would lose their competitiveness because of the salary hike.
“Our industry will not be able to sustain the recommended salary. Many small and medium factories will face difficulties in implementing the salary structure. I urged the chairman to review the recommendation,” Dipu said.
Roy said the recommendations would be sent to the labour and employment ministry for reviewing. After the review, a gazette would be published in the next 14 days.
Workers' representative Sirajul Islam Rony said, “I accepted the Tk 5,300 minimum wage, which includes the food subsidy … Now we need to work hard to increase productivity.”

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