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PIA Press Release
Monday, January 02, 2012


RTWPB-12 sets public consultation on wages

by Dani Doguiles

KORONADAL CITY, Jan. 2 (PIA) -- Despite the absence of a petition for a review of wage rates, the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB-12) will again hold a public consultation on the possibility of a wage adjustment this year.

These public consultations will also discuss the new two-tiered wage system being pushed by the Department of Labor and Employment.

DOLE 12 Regional Director Atty. Ma. Gloria Tango said, in the department's last meeting in third week of December, has tentatively scheduled the public discussion on January 25 and 26 in General Santos City and Kidapawan City in North Cotabato.

Invited to the consultation are representatives of the employees and management groups, as well as other sectors that have stakes on the issue.

RTWPB 12 has already received the latest economic data from the National Economic Development Authority, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics of the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Energy, Tango said.

Tango said the board needs to consult with the stakeholders on the necessity of revising the existing wage order.

"After the public consultations the board will meet to determine whether a wage hike is already necessary," she said.

RTWPB-12 Secretary Jessie dela Cruz said the scheduled public consultation is subject to the availability of resource persons from the National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC) they invited to present the two-tiered wage system being pushed by DOLE.

The two-tiered wage system consists of a mandatory regional wage floor and a productivity or performance-based wage scheme.

The wage floor shall be the lowest wage in the region; this should be required of all employers in the private sector.

The second part of the scheme, a pay scheme given to workers based on productivity, shall be implemented on voluntary basis.

Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz believes this new scheme will encourage workers to be more productive.

Wage Order XII No. 16 that set the present wage rate in Soccsksargen, which includes the provinces of Sarangani, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat and Kidapawan City and the cities of Cotabato, Kidapawan, Tacurong, Koronadal and General Santos, became effective on October 31, 2010.

It provided for a P15 - increase in the cost of living allowance (COLA) of employees in the private sector; the COLA was granted in two tranches: P10 on the date the order became effective and additional P5 starting April 1, 2011.

Daily wage in the region stands at P260 for non-agriculture workers, P240 for plantation workers, P235 for non-plantation agriculture workers, P240 for retail/service establishments employing not more than 10 workers, and P234 for retail/service establishments employing less than 10 people.

Wage Order XII No. 16's prescriptive period expired last October 31, but dela Cruz said, they have not yet received any petition requesting for its review. (DEDoguiles/PIA 12)

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