More wage hikes to be mulled: PM

More wage hikes to be mulled: PM

The government will push for further minimum wage increases for other areas and business types following rises in parts of 10 provinces that will take effect on April 13, Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin said yesterday.

He made the remarks after the cabinet acknowledged another hike to 400 baht a day in select areas within those provinces.

Mr Srettha said the cabinet will hold regular meetings to consider where and which type of business should receive support for raising the minimum wage.

The latest wage hike was approved by the tripartite wage committee on March 26. It will be applied to tourism-related businesses and four-star hotels with at least 50 employees, according to Pairoj Chotikasathien, permanent secretary for the Labour Ministry and chairman of the committee.

The hike will be applied to Bangkok’s Pathumwan and Watthana districts, Chiang Mai’s Nakhon Chiang Mai municipality, all of Phuket, the area under the jurisdiction of tambon Ao Nang administrative organisation in Krabi, Songkhla’s Hat Yai municipality, Surat Thani’s Koh Samui district, Phangnga’s tambon Khuk Khak municipality, Pattaya City in Chon Buri, Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Hua Hin municipality, and Rayong’s tambon Ban Phae.

However, business associations in Phuket, Phangnga and Krabi yesterday issued a joint statement seeking a delay. They include the Phuket Chamber of Commerce and the Thai Hotels Association’s Southern Chapter, among others.

They said employees receive wages based on minimum rates as well as their share of service charges, so their income already exceeds 400 baht a day.

“This act of interference in the industry’s wage payment mechanism is wrong. It will impose financial burdens on employers and affect other businesses such as restaurants and transport,” the group said.

The daily minimum wage for Thai workers nationwide rose on Jan 1, with the new rates varying between provinces, ranging from 330 to 370 baht. The increases range from 2 to 16 baht, or an average of 2.37%.

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