Agri SA raises concerns over minimum wage calculation - FreshFruitPortal.com

Agri SA raises concerns over minimum wage calculation

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Agri SA raises concerns over minimum wage calculation

South African farmers body Agri SA has called on the government to "correct an apparent error" in a recent weekly minimum wage announcement.

Agri SA president president Johannes Möller pointed out inconsistencies in Minister of Labour Mildrid Oliphant announcement on Jan. 18 which outlined minimum wages for farm workers for the next year.

"What causes confusion is that there has been a significant deviation from the formula used in the previous three years as well as the fact that the weekly wage as announced is incorrect according to the Department of Labour," he said.

"According to the announcement, the lowest quartile of the CPI was used for calculating the minimum monthly wage, plus an additional 1,5 percentage points, which in Agri SA's opinion represents double compensation for food inflation. In the past one percentage point was added for food inflation.

"The increase is further based on the October 2011 CPI information while in the past it was based on the November information. The result of this is that the monthly minimum wage increased by 9,3% from R1 375.74 to R1 503.90 on 1 March 2012"

Möller said the weekly wage should rise from R317.51 to R347.10, and not to R374.10, as published in the Government Gazette.

"The Department of Labour was alerted to the error and has undertaken to publish a correction."

Möller added that any employer may deduct a maximum of 10% for food and housing, respectively, if certain conditions are met.

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