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(LEAD) Next year's minimum wage set at 8,720 won in smallest-ever increase

All News 03:05 July 14, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES throughout with details; RECASTS headline; ADDS photo)

SEJONG, July 14 (Yonhap) -- A national commission on Tuesday set next year's minimum hourly wage at 8,720 won (US$7.25), representing the smallest-ever increase of 1.5 percent on-year.

The decision came during the ninth plenary meeting of the Minimum Wage Commission, which is comprised of nine members each from all three sides -- employers, employees and those representing social interests.

The increase is the smallest since the minimum wage was first introduced in 1988.

This year's negotiations were particularly tough due to the economic difficulties stemming from the coronavirus pandemic.

The new minimum wage was proposed by those commissioners representing social interests after employers and employees failed to bridge their gap.

Employees had initially sought a 16.4 percent increase to 10,000 won, while employers had sought a 2.1 percent cut to 8,410 won.

By law, the commission is required to present the new minimum wage to the labor minister, who is then required to announce it publicly by Aug. 5.

The new wage would then take effect on Jan. 1.

This photo shows members of the Minimum Wage Commission after their ninth plenary meeting at the government complex in Sejong on July 14, 2020. (Yonhap)


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