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Proposed minimum wage to be announced – Ramaphosa

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A proposed figure for a minimum wage will be published on Sunday following a Nedlac meeting, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says.

“We are to receive a report from the panel of advisers I have appointed to advise the social partners on the issue of the minimum wage,” he told journalists on Friday.

Ramaphosa was speaking on the sidelines of the Federation of Unions of South Africa’s conference, where he delivered a keynote address.

He said business, labour, community-based organisations and government were due to hold a meeting where the figure would be tabled. Discussions were also expected to focus on the mechanisms of that minimum wage once it was accepted by all parties.

“We will also deal with the mechanics of how – once its accepts how is it going to work – it will change over time; when it’s implemented and so forth,” said Ramaphosa.

The deputy president said that once the figure had been published it would be subjected to public consultation throughout the country.

He said other matters to be discussed included labour stability.

“Issues regarding the long strikes, violence during strikes, [are] all to be discussed on Sunday. Hopefully we will be able to finalise the agreement thereafter.”

The proposals still had to be taken back to various social partners, government and unions, he said.

He described the development as an exciting one for all who had been involved in the process.

‘They were like a sponge’

Ramaphosa also told journalists that he had met representatives of one of the ratings agencies. This was amid fears that South Africa could be downgraded to junk status due to political and labour instability.

“I met Fitch officials and had a long discussion,” said Ramaphosa.

He said labour stability was one of the dominant issues which they had discussed and they wanted to know how much progress had been achieved in this regard.

“They wanted to know what progress we are making [with] the issue of strikes, strike balloting and if our agreement will deal with that. We said yes.”

Ramaphosa said the meeting had gone well, with Fitch being receptive to the information it had received.

“They took in the information in a good way…they were like a sponge sucking up information. We gave them all the information they required, which was very positive from our side.”

He also briefed them on the state-owned enterprises reform process, giving the agency an update on progress achieved in that regard, as well as creating a more investment friendly country.

[Source: News24]
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