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  • Next Year's Minimum Wage Hike To Cause A Stir Throughout Labor, Business Circles

South Korea's minimum wage for next year has been set to 8,350 won per hour, up 10.9 percent from the current 7,530 won.

However, the move is inviting fierce reactions from the business circle, especially smaller sized companies, as it will heave up labor costs.

Minyoung Lee has more.


This marks the first time in history for the country's minimum wage to surpass the 8,000-won mark, which will result in some 1.75 million won salary per month based on a 40-hour workweek.

Following the decision, the labor sector expressed discontent as it fell short of their initial demand of a 43 percent increase to 10,790 won.

The Korean Confederation of Trade Unions said the council's decision discards President Moon Jae-in's pledge to increase the threshold to 10,000 won by 2020 to achieve income-led growth.

Those representing business, which called for a freeze, fiercely opposed the move, claiming it will pose a huge blow to small business owners.

Meanwhile, an association of small businesses strongly resisted the move and rejected what they called a 'unilateral decision.'

They said they would push ahead with an autonomous agreement between employers and employees regardless of the wage hike and would also reflect the increased wage on production costs.

Convenience store owners also said it would devise plans to offset losses from increased labor costs, including a late-night surcharge and rejecting credit card payment for certain products that have high credit card fees.

They said a no work-day for all stores every month may also be added to the plan.

Minyoung Lee, eFM News.■

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