The number of employees in the nation who work 50 or more hours a week dropped below 10 percent of the total last year, showing a decrease for the fourth consecutive year, according to the latest data compiled by the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS).
Last year, only 8 percent of employees worked “very long hours” — defined as 50 hours or more per week based on the criteria set in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Better Life Index — a decrease of 2.2 percentage points from 2015 and the lowest percentage since 2006, the DGBAS said late last month.
The decline was attributed primarily to the amendment to the Labor Standards Act (勞動基準法) in January last year, which capped the number of regular work hours at 40 per week, the DGBAS said in a statement.
The data showed that employees in the 45-to-54 age group were most likely to work very long hours (8.4 percent), followed by those 55 and over (7.2 percent), although both figures declined slightly from the previous year, the DGBAS said.
The data also pointed to a gender gap among employees who work very long hours.
It showed a difference of 3.8 percentage points between male and female employees who were married or living with partners, and a smaller gap of 0.2 percentage points between separated or widowed employees.
In the 15-to-24 age category, the percentage of women working very long hours was higher than men, while in the over-25 age group, the opposite was true, the data showed.
Gender is an inevitable factor in the number of hours a person chooses to and can work, since societal norms in Taiwan require that women cater more to family needs after they get married, said Hsin Ping-lung (辛炳隆), an associate professor at National Taiwan University’s Graduate Institute of National Development.
‧ Last year, only 8 percent of employees worked more than 50 hours a week.
‧ Employees in the 45-to-54 age group were most likely to work very long hours.
‧ In the 15-to-24 age category, the percentage of women working very long hours was higher than men.
Source: the Directorate-General of Budget,
Accounting and Statistics
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