Minimum wage to go up in farming, forestry
JOHANNESBURG: The Department of Labour on Wednesday announced an increase in the minimum wage for workers in the farming and forestry sectors.
“After extensive consultations and consideration of submissions received from employers and employees both in the farming and forestry sectors, the Department of Labour has decided to adjust upwards the minimum wages for farming and forestry sectors,” the department said in a statement on Wednesday.
The department said it applied consumer price index (CPI) excluding owner’s equivalent rent, which is lower than what the department used to apply, to calculate minimum wage increases.
The labour department said as of March 1, 2016, the minimum wage increases will be adjusted as:
Hourly rate of R14.25 up from R13.37 in 2015/16;
Weekly rate of R641.32 up from R601.61;
Monthly rate of R2 778.83 up from R2 606.78.
A daily wage for a farm worker who works nine hours per day will now be R128.26 up from R120.32 in the 2015/16 financial year.
The Department said it was aware of the challenges faced by the agricultural sector with regard to certain areas affected by drought and how farmers were toiling with some tough decisions on whether or not to retain labour.
“Wage adjustments are morally right so as to ensure that workers’ earnings keep pace with the rising cost of living while boosting the purchasing power which benefits the economy,” minister Mildred Oliphant said in the statement.