Government approves 7.3% minimum wage increase

HÀ NỘI – The government has approved an increase of 7.3 per cent against the regional minimum wage, starting January 1, 2017.

According to a decree signed by Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc earlier this week, the minimum wage for labourers in Region I will be increased to VNĐ 3,750,000 (US$167) per month from the current VNĐ 3,500,000, the highest increase for labourers compared to those in other regions.  

Region I includes large districts and towns in Hà Nội, Hải Phòng, HCM City and Đồng Nai, as well as Bình Dương and Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu.

Labourers from Regions II, III and IV will have a minimum wage of VNĐ3,320,000, VNĐ 2,900,000 and VNĐ 2,580,000 per month, respectively.

This plan was submitted by the National Wage Council after a months-long fierce debate between representatives of employees and employers, who suggested very different figures. 

In a noteworthy move, the decree also regulates that enterprises are not allowed to strike out or cut wages for labourers who work overtime, work at night or work in onerous or hazardous working conditions. Other allowances, bonuses and benefits offered by enterprises should be paid in accordance with labour contracts, collective labour agreements or regulations of the enterprises.

According to the Labour Code, the regional minimum wage is the lowest permitted rate that employers can pay an employee doing the simplest job under normal working conditions. The minimum wage must ensure a labourer and his/her family have a livelihood that meets their minimum needs. – VNS