Hon Hai Group (鴻海集團), the world’s largest contract electronics maker and assembler of iPhones and iPads, announced on Saturday that it will raise the salaries of workers at three of its subsidiaries to the same levels of the parent company backdating May 1.
The three subsidiaries are Innolux Corp (群創), Foxconn Technology Co (鴻準), and Zhen Ding Technology Holding Ltd (臻鼎), Hon Hai chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘) said at a news conference.
At Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), engineers and administrative staff with bachelor’s degrees are offered starting monthly salaries ranging between NT$36,000 and NT$47,000, Gou said.
The starting salary of production operators — jobs that do not require a college degree — is at least NT$26,000 per month, he said, adding that all employees receive year-end bonuses equal to at least two months’ salary.
Gou’s announcement was apparently a response to controversy over a comment he made recently on wage stagnation in the nation, where many college graduates are paid starting salaries of NT$22,000 per month.
Gou said on Thursday that he would acquire those low-wage companies and then raise the salaries of their workers, sparking heated debate on the Internet.
One netizen, who identified himself as an Innolux employee, said he was earning exactly NT$22,000 per month and urged Gou to first increase the pay of his own workers before thinking about others.
However, Gou on Saturday said that Innolux investigated the claim and could not find such a worker.
Gou urged the person who posted the message to e-mail his pay slip to him and promised that he would look into the situation and give a satisfactory answer.
Commenting on the issue of pay stagnation, Gou said college graduates should earn at least NT$30,000 per month.
Gou attributed the low wages to college graduates now doing jobs that do not require a college degree, a problem he said is linked to an educational imbalance in the job market and flaws in the country’s education system.
For example, several college graduates work as production operators at Hon Hai and can only earn NT$26,000 per month, he said.