Move Forward will tie 450-baht wage raise with other benefits, says Pita
The minimum wage increase will come with several other benefits, Move Forward Party leader Pita Limjaroenrat promised after visiting a labour network in Samut Prakan on Friday.
He said the wage increase will be tied in with other aspects beneficial to workers like better rights, a stronger social security system and greater assistance to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
“We have not spoken about the impact of the wage hike,” he said. “Workers should get tax relief for two years. We will also study the measures employed when the wages were raised in 2013. Our aim is to boost competitiveness as well as take care of the labour force.”
Pita said he believes the 450-baht wage hike is appropriate, especially in light of economic growth, inflation or productivity over the past eight years.
He added that Move Forward will discuss the potential problems of the wage increase and how to tackle them with the Thai Chamber of Commerce and the Employers’ Confederation of Thailand.
“If we amend the Labour Protection Act, wages should increase automatically every year in line with inflation, economic growth or production,” he said.
When asked about many businesses planning to shift their production bases to other countries, he said the party will have to look into the uncertainties faced by the business sector.
He said the planned wage increase may just be one of the many factors forcing businesses to shift their production overseas. Other factors may include labour potential, corruption and taxes, he added.
Vowing to bring the minimum wage up to 450 baht within 100 days of setting up the government, he said he will also boost awareness on this issue among related sectors in Thailand and overseas.
“Move Forward MPs in Samut Prakan will take care of people in labour, environment and public health to make changes in the province,” he said.
Move Forward Party won a majority in the May 14 election, bagging 151 seats in the House of Representatives and sweeping up all eight MP seats in Samut Prakan.