Taiwan to raise minimum monthly wage by 5.21% in 2022

Young women walk on the street in Taipei, while wearing protective face masks on May 31, 2020. (Shutterstock)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — Taiwan announced Friday its plans to raise the minimum monthly and hourly wage by 5.21 percent, effective Jan. 1, 2022.

The decision of the Minimum Wage Review Committee under the Ministry of Labor (MOL) will have to be approved later this month by the Cabinet which almost invariably follows its recommendation.

The 5.21 percent increase will raise the minimum monthly wage from NT$24,000 (US$857) at present to NT$25,250 and the minimum hourly wage from NT$160 to NT$168.

Considering Taiwan’s strong economic growth and continuous increase of the consumer price index over the past months, the committee’s decision is in line with expectations from labor groups, which called for a hike of 6-8 percent this year.

The economy is expected to grow 5.88 percent in 2021 which saw the minimum wage increase by just 0.84 percent on Jan. 1. However, not everyone will be pleased with the decision from the Minimum Wage Review Committee.

The Chinese National Federation of Industries, which represents 159 business associations in Taiwan, is likely to denounce the impact on small and medium-sized businesses which have already suffered losses due to the pandemic.

The group cited a survey it recently conducted with 200 of its members that indicated 93 percent of respondents could accept an increase of no more than 3 percent.

The government could, therefore, announce new plans to provide subsidies to companies that have been financially impacted by COVID-19 to limit the consequences today’s decision will have on the economy.

Established under the MOL, the committee consists of government officials responsible for labor and economic affairs, and representatives of labor, the private sector and academia.

It is legally required to hold a minimum wage review meeting in the third quarter of every year.