Duterte wants equal wages for Metro Manila, provinces: labor chief


Posted at Sep 08 2016 11:12 AM

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte wants workers in the provinces to enjoy the same wages as those in Metro Manila to help decongest the capital, his labor secretary said Thursday.

The government is considering a "national minimum wage law" as it consolidates measures in Congress seeking salary adjustments, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said.

"President Rodrigo Duterte wants Metro Manila and provincial workers to have the same wage," Bello told DZMM.

"Many people flock to Manila because of the salary rate, in turn, Metro Manila suffers from overpopulation," Bello explained.

Roughly one-tenth of the country's 100 million people are crammed in Metro Manila, where wages are higher compared to the provinces.

Duterte, who assumed office on June 30, promised to spread wealth and development to the countryside.

If passed, the national minimum wage law would make regional wage boards "irrelevant," he said.

Bello said the government was eyeing the passage of the consolidated wage hike bills by October.

Bello said he was working to "totally repeal" a department order that allowed the practice of "endo" or contractualization.

"By the end of 2016, we will reduce the incidents of endo and contractualization by 50%. By the end of 2017, there will be no more endo and contractualization," Bello said.