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Govt moves step closer to wage hike

The government has agreed in principle to provide a supporting allowance for low-wage civil servants and to increase the minimum wage for private sector employees to help them deal with rampant inflation.
The cabinet’s monthly meeting, which took place on July 24-25, instructed the officials concerned to identify the actual number of people who will benefit from a wage increase and make a detailed analysis of the government’s capacity to make these extra payments.

Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone.

The plan was announced shortly after Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone told the National Assembly’s 5th Ordinary Session earlier this month to look into the possibility of increasing the minimum wage and providing a supporting allowance for low-wage civil servants.
Assembly members said the current monthly minimum wage of 1,300,000 kip was inadequate given the cost of living and asked the government to consider a pay rise.
The government meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone and attended by cabinet members.
The prime minister instructed the departments responsible to do more to stabilise currency exchange rates, curb skyrocketing inflation, and address the high level of public debt.
Dr Sonexay said it was essential to boost national revenue by modernising the revenue collection system and sharing information about revenue collection among all economic sectors.
Government agencies were asked to improve the way in which taxes on land and property are paid and recorded, while also reining in   extravagant spending and plugging loopholes that can lead to financial leaks. 
Other government bodies were instructed to review the progress made in the implementation of mining projects that have been given government approval, to ensure no losses are incurred.
The prime minister also told the sectors responsible to regulate the price of goods on sale at markets to minimise the financial hardship currently being experienced by the general public.
This should be done by studying pricing structures and identifying the root cause of inflation and the categories of products that are driving up the cost of living for consumers.
Government agencies were also advised to ensure a sufficient supply of fuel and to push for greater productivity levels so that more goods are produced domestically to replace imports and boost exports.

By Somsack Pongkhao
 (Latest Update July 26, 2023)


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