Thu, Jan 03, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Cabinet mulling state-firm bonuses

AWAITING APPROVAL:A spokesperson said that a proposal that would see CPC Corp, Taiwan employees raking in the biggest bonuses was being scrutinized

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

Amid a public outcry over high year-end bonuses for employees of money-losing state-owned enterprises, a proposal to increase the size of the bonuses to as much as 4.6 months’ salary was delivered yesterday to the Executive Yuan.

Executive Yuan spokesperson Cheng Li-wun (鄭麗文) said the proposal was submitted and was in the process of being scrutinized for Premier Sean Chen’s (陳冲) approval.

Under the proposal, if approved, employees of CPC Corp, Taiwan (CPC) are to receive 4.6 months’ salary as a year-end bonus ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday next month, followed by Aerospace Industrial Development Corp’s (AIDC) 3.88 months’ salary, Taiwan Water Corp’s (TWC水) 3.46 months’ salary and Taiwan Sugar Corp’s (Taisugar) 3.31 months’ salary.

Under the proposal, Taipower would distribute year-end bonuses to its employees of between 2.6 and 3.45 times their monthly salaries.

The total bonuses is composed of two parts, with a maximum of up to 2.6 months’ salaries awarded based on the company’s performance as decided by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and a maximum of up to two months’ salaries based on employees’ job performances, which requires the premier’s approval.

The decision on Friday about bonuses based on company performance triggered an outcry among lawmakers across party lines.

The ministry decided that employees of CPC, which posted a deficit of NT$32.4 billion (US$1.12 billion) in 2011, should be given a bonus of 2.6 times their monthly salaries. The oil refiner’s debt reached NT$74 billion as of 2011.

The ministry decided that Taipower, which posted a loss of NT$43.3 billion in 2011, should pay its employees a bonus equivalent to 1.65 months’ salary, while TWC, which had a deficit of NT$367 million in 2011, should give its staff a bonus of 1.46 times their salaries.

AIDC and Taisugar were the only state-run firms to report profits last year, of NT$1.1 billion and NT$5.5 billion respectively. The ministry decided their employees were eligible for bonuses of 1.88 and 1.31 times their monthly salary respectively.

The ministry had defended its bonus policy by saying that measures carried out by the four state-owned enterprises in support of the government’s policies, such as stabilizing commodity prices, have hurt their abilities to meet their profit targets. The only exception was AIDC, which did not have to shoulder policy responsibility.

As for the bonuses based on job performance, a committee led by the Research, Development, and Evaluation Commission suggested that employees at CPC, AIDC, TWC and Taisugar be given a bonus of double their salaries and Taipower employees be given between one and 1.8 times their salaries

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