The government is launching a 45-day public consultation starting today on the proposed implementation of a statutory minimum wage for all workers. The bureau proposes that domestic helpers and disabled employees will be excluded from the implementation of the minimum wage.
A press conference about the public consultation was held on Sunday at the Labour Affairs Bureau (DSAL) in Areia Preta district. The public consultation will end on December 27. Four public sessions will be held during the consultation period.
DSAL Director Wong Chi Hong said his bureau was refraining from proposing the amount of the minimum wage in the public consultation, as the consultation will focus on the establishment of the system of a city-wide statutory minimum wage – i.e. how such a system should work.
According to Macau Post Daily, Wong also said that during the public consultation the government was open to listening to opinions on how much the minimum wage should be, from various segments of civil society.
Wong said his bureau aimed to finish drafting a report detailing the opinions collected during the consultation period, in the first quarter of next year.
Wong also said the government would make a decision on the minimum wage amount when it drafts a bill on the implementation of a statutory minimum wage, by taking into account the economic situation at that time as well as by taking into consideration the protection of employees and whether employers would be able to afford it.
The government will have to submit the bill to the Legislative Assembly for debate and vote.
A statutory minimum wage of MOP30 an hour – or MOP240 a day or MOP6,240 a month – for cleaners and doormen employed by the property management sector has been in force since January 1 last year.
The bill on the statutory minimum wage for cleaners and doormen was passed by the legislature in July 2015. Since then the government has said that it aims for the statutory minimum wage to be extended to all employment sectors within three years of the bill coming into force – meaning it should be implemented by January 2019.
Early this year, Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On reassured the public he was confident that a minimum wage system for all employment sectors will be implemented in 2019, which he said was important for the second and final five-year term of his government, which will end on December 19, 2019.
Macau is the only Chinese jurisdiction which still does not have a statutory minimum wage for all employment sectors, unlike the mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong.