Wage hike in MM, other regions have to wait

by Mayen Jaymalin, The Philippine Star

Posted at May 04 2014 11:38 AM | Updated as of May 04 2014 07:38 PM

MANILA - Workers in Metro Manila and other regions may have to wait to get a pay hike.

Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB) needs to wait until October before it could act on any petition for a salary increase.

“The RTWPB in Metro Manila can start the wage review and consultation in October or a year after the issuance of the last wage order,” Baldoz said yesterday.

She noted that the law prohibits the wage board from granting successive salary hikes in a year unless there is a supervening condition or an extraordinary increase in prices of essential commodities.

The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP), the country’s largest labor group, has announced its plan to file a formal petition seeking a P135 across-the-board wage increase for Metro Manila workers.

TUCP expressed its intention to file similar wage petitions before the other RTWPBs nationwide.

The TUCP said the purchasing of power has significantly eroded and a salary hike is needed to help the workers cope with the wage erosion.

Baldoz said five wage orders have reached their respective anniversary dates. These are the wage orders in Regions 3, 4-B, 8, 11 and 12.

“The concerned wage boards in these regions are already in different stages of consultations as basis for a decision on the wage issue,” she said.

Baldoz said the boards must consider the impact of changes in consumer price index and inflation rates on workers’ purchasing power in rendering a decision on any wage petition.