Wed, Aug 19, 2015 - Page 4 News List

Local and foreign workers’ pay not pegged: minister

Staff writer, with CNA

As Taiwan and the nations that provide the bulk of foreign domestic helpers prepare to discuss a wage increase for the workers, Minister of Labor Chen Hsiung-wen (陳雄文) yesterday said that their wages are not pegged to the domestic basic salary.

“The monthly minimum wage for local workers has increased by 26 percent in recent years, while the basic pay for foreign domestic helpers has been frozen for 18 years, which is not reasonable,” Chen said.

Last month, the Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand jointly asked Taiwan to raise the minimum monthly pay of their domestic helpers in Taiwan from NT$15,840 to NT$17,500.

“A 7 percent increase would push the monthly wage of foreign domestic helpers to almost NT$17,000, but we will try to find a balance somewhere in the middle, as they have requested a raise of 11 percent,” Chen said.

“We might offer a 6 percent increase of NT$1,000 per month and will discuss the issue with these countries next week to reach an agreement,” he added. “However, their pay is not pegged to the local minimum monthly wage, despite their request for an increase in pay.”

Ministry of Labor statistics showed that as of the end of January, there were 556,412 foreign workers in Taiwan, with 208,486 employed as caregivers or domestic helpers. Of that number, 175,000 were domestic helpers from Indonesia, making it the largest source of such workers in Taiwan.

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