The Himalayan Times, February 02, 2018
As envisioned by the Labour Act-2017, the government is preparing to revise minimum wage of workers from the beginning of the Nepali New Year 2075.
Secretary at the Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE), Laxman Mani Mainali, informed that the government will hold a tri-party discussion (government, employers and workers) to revise the minimum wage for workers in the country.
The new Labour Act has envisioned revising minimum wages of workers every two years effective from the first date of Nepali New Year and as part of its implementation, MoLE is gearing up to increase minimum wage for workers effective from April 14.
The government had last revised minimum wages for workers in February 2016 to Rs 9,700 per month and Rs 395 per day. However, Mainali said that the new minimum wage for workers will be determined after series of discussions with stakeholders.
“As wage revision for workers is envisioned by the Labour Act, we are prioritising effective implementation of the act as soon as possible by bringing a Labour Guideline. We will also soon hold discussions with labour unions and employers on revising the minimum wage for workers,” said Mainali.
However, Mainali said that the concrete decision on wage revision for workers and other issues related to labour will be taken only after the formation of the new government.
Meanwhile, Bharat Raj Acharya, vice-chairman at the Employers’ Council of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said the new Labour Act is friendly to both workers and employees and its implementation will benefit both parties.
“A relevant revision on minimum wage for workers will be made after holding discussions with workers’ union and the government,” said Acharya.
The new Labour Act, which was endorsed by then Parliament in August, has a provision where employers are not required to pay employees for the duration in which the production gets affected due to illegal protests and strikes. However, it allows employees to resort to strikes and sit-in programmes for their common demands and cause against employers.
As per the act, firms should provide minimum wages of Rs 9,700 per month to workers and ensure uniformity in wages for works of similar nature and also guarantee social security to employees. Likewise, employers should also provide insurance facility for the employees as per the new law.