5 Nov 2004

French Polynesia wage talks to resume

11:10 am on 5 November 2004

French Polynesia government talks with an employers' delegation on increasing the monthly minimum wage on the first of December will resume next week.

The government is proposing that the minimum monthly wage be increased from US$1,209 to US$1,374.

The Labour Minister, Jean-Christophe Bouissou, says he is satisfied with his talks with the employers' group, but acknowledges there are still difficulties to be resolved.

The problem, he says, is knowing how to compensate for the increases at the company level without having cost of living repercussions.

He says what that means is that if salaries are increased other costs will have to be reduced.

The minister says one possibility might be to lower employers' social security and welfare payments on behalf of their employees to compensate for the wage increase.