Global labor organization urges Egypt to base minimum wage on prices

The International Labor Organization (ILO) called on Egypt to set a minimum wage based on the average prices for the basket of commodities needed by workers. 

An ILO delegation on Wednesday wrapped up its visit to Egypt, during which it held discussions with the Egyptian government about the minimum wage and the means for determining its value. The delegation stressed that the government is committed to setting a minimum wage through consultation with social partners.

In a statement, the delegation urged the Egyptian government to set a preliminary minimum wage, test its impact, and then make annual raises based on changing commodities prices.

The delegation warned against making haphazard changes to wages, saying that such a move would damage workers' purchasing power. It urged Egypt to consider rising inflation and how it relates to wages.

The ILO stressed that the minimum wage should be based on reliable data and realistic analyses, highlighting Egypt's need for a professional body, preferably approved by a law, that can determine appropriate wages.

Minister of Manpower and Immigration Ahmed Hassan al-Borai told Al-Masry Al-Youm that Egypt is not bound by international rules in setting its minimum wage, noting that the ILO's role was only consultative.

During its visit, the ILO presented the government with examples from the UK and Brazil's experiences in setting their minimum wages.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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