Minimum wage hike won’t buy two rolls
The additional 2.94 pesos per day represents a 4.2% increase for 2016
The minimum wage will go up 4.2% on January 1, the National Minimum Wage Commission decided this week, an increase of 2.94 pesos.
Slightly more than 1 million full-time wage-earners are estimated to be among those who are paid the daily minimum wage, which will total 73.04 pesos in 2016.
The increase, reported El Universal, isn’t even enough to buy a couple of bread rolls, and earned scorn from people interviewed in Mexico City, who labeled it as “a mockery” and “reprehensible.”
Minimum Wage Commission president Basilio González Núñez defended the amount by saying “the truly poor people are those who have no jobs.”
Referring to people who go for long periods of time without work, he asked, What do you think they would prefer: a minimum wage or no income at all?” suggesting that a higher minimum would reduce employment.
The commission has also pointed out that the 4.2% hike is well over the inflation rate.
There have been calls from some politicians for a much larger increase. Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera, for instance, has said he would like to see the minimum wage at 171 pesos by 2018.
He was critical of the new wage today, and called for more than just “symbolic increases” to a wage level he described as a serious problem.
Mexico has the lowest minimum wage of any member country of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and is destined to carry on with that distinction.
Source: El Universal (sp), Milenio (sp)