NATIONAL TREASURY VOICES SUPPORT FOR SOUTH AFRICAN MINIMUM WAGE PROPOSAL

South Africa's National Treasury fully supports the report and approach on the national minimum wage unveiled by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday, says Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

"The report represents a balanced, thoughtful and constructive approach to addressing the challenge of inequality and unemployment. It represents an important milestone in our government's efforts over the years in this regard. The report also takes account of the need to support employment creation," Gordhan said here Tuesday.

Ramaphosa released the report by the panel of experts which had examined the issue of a minum wage for the country and which recommends the minimum wage to be set at 3,500 Rand (about 250 US dollars) per month, or 20 Rand per hour.

Gordhan said in a statement that the National Treasury, like various other stakeholders, contributed to the preliminary minimum wage task team discussions at National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).

"We believe that the panel has taken all the submissions into consideration in coming up with a framework that seeks to support inclusive economic growth,' he added. "We encourage all stakeholders and South Africans to participate in, and support actively this collective effort to address fault lines, like inequality in society and in the economy."

The Deputy President said when releasing the report that the proposed minimum wage was still to be discussed by stakeholders before a final amount was decided on.

In his State of the Nation Address in June 2014, President Jacob Zuma called on Nedlac's social partners, under the leadership of the Deputy President, to address low wages, wage inequalities, the national minimum wage and violent and protracted strikes.

The Deputy President, in his capacity as chairperson of the committee of principals of Nedlac, appointed a seven-member panel to advise on an appropriate level at which the national minimum wage can be set. The panel of advisers are expected to convene in two weeks to consider responses from Nedlac constituencies.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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