Let’s get in touch.
We’d love to hear from you.
Micro enterprises should be exempt from the order raising the minimum wage. This was the opinion of Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion.
This follows the decision of the wage boards of Metro Manila and Western Visayas to approve an increase in the minimum wage for workers in various sectors in the regions. The orders are now being reviewed, but will take effect 15 days after newspaper publication.
Concepcion believes micro-enterprises should not be given this additional strain as they are already struggling from the effects of pandemic lockdowns and the high cost of commodities brought about by the Russia-Ukraine crisis. “They have very little working capital and whatever they earn for the day, they re-invest in the business just to keep going,” he said. “Many of them are already in debt and now their inputs are more expensive because commodity prices are up. It will be devastating for them,” he said.
Concepcion points to a precedent in the exemption when the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board in Region V provided an exemption in 2004. It excluded from coverage of an order raising minimum wage rates in Region V, “workers registered in Barangay Micro Business Enterprises.” Additional exemptions were made for “retail/service establishments regularly employing not more than 10 workers, distressed establishments, new business enterprises, and establishments adversely affected by calamities.”
“We have to make this exemption for them because these are not ordinary times,” said Concepcion.
Under the order announced last week, Metro Manila workers will be granted a Php33 wage hike, raising the minimum wage rate in the National Capital Region to Php570 for the non-agriculture sector and Php533 for the agriculture sector. In the Western Visayas, non-agriculture, industrial, and commercial workers will receive a hike of Php55 and Php110. The daily minimum wage here will be Php450 and Php420 for those employing more than 10 workers and those employing 10 or less workers, respectively. In the agriculture sector, the increase will be Php95, bringing the daily minimum wage to Php410. The board has also approved a ₱500 wage increase for domestic workers.
The DOLE had earlier attributed the decision to restoring the purchasing power of minimum wage earners to keep up with the rising prices of basic goods, commodities and petroleum products.