Bello: I am not totally against P710 daily wage hike
MANILA, Philippines — Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Monday said he was not totally against the petition to increase the daily minimum wage by P710.
Bello said this in reaction to a petition filed by the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) at the National Capital Region (NCR) wage board seeking to increase daily minimum wage from P537 to P1,247.
“I’m not totally against it. It’s just that [approving that] is not under the authority of Department of Labor and Employment, not even the President. It’s under the mandate of the Congress. They will have to legislate,” Bello, speaking partly in Filipino, said in an interview over AM radio station DZMM.
Asked if employers could possibly pull out if the wage increase should be allowed, Bello said employers were represented in the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board where consultations regarding wage increases are held.
“This group assesses the economic situation in every region and on the basis of their assessment, they make recommendations for wage adjustment,” Bello said.
The board, Bello said, recently increased the minimum wage of housemaids from P3,500 to P4,000 monthly.
Bello said the labor department would be ready to provide its input if Congress should decide to unify the minimum wage for the whole country instead each region having a different minimum wage.
“We have to stick to the present system, the regional tripartite board. If the Congress would like to consider fixing another minimum wage, it is up to Congress,” Bello said. “We will give our input. We can’t just let Congress decide alone.”
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