A New Power Party (NPP) lawmaker yesterday called on state-owned enterprises to reform how they appoint contract workers, saying that it can lead to favoritism while also demoralizing employees who must pass state examinations to be hired.
NPP Legislator Chen Jiau-hua (陳椒華) said that during a question-and-answer session last year, Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) promised to review and improve the situation after former NPP lawmaker Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌) provided Shen with a list of contract appointments, all of whom remain in their positions.
The presidents of state-owned corporations are in a prime position to appoint the people they want to certain levels within their company, Chen said.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
These employees receive a monthly salary of NT$80,000 to NT$90,000, while appointments on short-term contracts are paid NT$49,000 monthly, both far above the starting wages of employees who entered the company through state exams, Chen said.
While stressing that she was not against the system, Chen said it needed reforms.
Someone who works under contract for 15 to 20 years should become an actual employee through the proper channels, Chen said.
Citing CPC Corp, Taiwan (CPC) as an example, Chen said it had been known to use recruitment ads that did not use the company’s proper name and would run for only a few days to attract potential contract appointments.
“Such practices seem suspiciously similar to creating a back door for select individuals,” Chen said, adding that she could not understand what CPC had to fear from letting the public know that it is hiring.
The Ministry of Economic Affairs’ Division of Human Resources head Chen Jung-shun (陳榮順) said that all hiring of personnel through contracts is in line with the ministry’s regulations.
State-owned enterprises require such personnel, he added.
Taiwan Power Co is the only state-owned business without contract employees, while CPC has 70, Taiwan Sugar has 21 and Taiwan Water Corp has 24, comprising 0.4 to 0.6 percent of total personnel, he said.
The ministry would step up requirements for hiring contract workers and would consider the necessity of certain appointments, he said, adding that on principle, state-owned corporations do their best to control the percentage of contract hires within their companies.
A CPC representative said that its contractors include mooring masters and doctors, adding that doctors’ salaries are the equivalent of a rank 12 civil servant, at NT$100,000 per month, while a mooring master’s salary is below the average pay rate of other companies.
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