7 Jan 2020

Minimum wage increase in Samoa welcomed

11:11 am on 7 January 2020

The minimum wage increase in Samoa, which came into effect on 1 January, has been welcomed by the local association of manufacturers and exporters.

Last year, Cabinet approved an incremental increase from $WST2.30 per hour to $WST3.00 per hour.

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Photo: RNZ

Association president Tagaloa Eddie Wilson told the Samoa Observer that the 70 cents an hour increase was agreed to because it was a rise that could be absorbed.

He said that it was an entry point for school leavers joining the workforce without qualifications or experience.

"I think it's good and workers can anticipate a slight increase...our business has already started adjusting rates end of last year," he said.

However, Tagaloa warned businesses who continued to pay low wages.

"Workers should be compensated with performance and it's a two way thing," he said.

He also voiced concern at the seasonal workers scheme taking workers out of the local market: "Losing skilled workers to the seasonal scheme will only disrupt the private sector."