24 November, 2017
National minumum wage bill
attached for your information a copy of the abovementioned
Bill (along with a Memorandum on the Bill and an Impact
Assessment) which has just been released for public comment
and which I received this morning.
One of FSA's
major concerns with the draft Bill was that "forestry
workers" were not included in the 90% dispensation
applicable to "farm workers" whereby the minimum wage was
initially set at R18 per hour as opposed to R20 / hour. FSA
brought this fact to Busa's attention, through Agri SA and I
am pleased to report that the final Bill now INCLUDES
"forestry workers" in the above dispensation.
things to note are as follows:
- The NMW will come into effect on
1 May 2018.
- It will be set initially at
R18.00 per hour.
- In terms of clause 5 of the NMW
Bill, this wage excludes:
- Any payment made to enable a
worker to work including any transport, equipment,
tool, food or accommodation allowance;
- Any payment in kind including
- e.g. rations, board and accommodation etc.;
- Gratuities, including
bonuses, tips or gifts; and
- Any other category of
- It will be based on "ordinary
hours of work" - in our case this is 45 hours per week.
- Importantly, in terms of clause
4.6 of the NMW Bill, it is an
unfair labour practice to unilaterally alter wages,
hours of work or other conditions of employment in
connection with the implementation of the NMW. This
clause takes retrospective effect from 1 May 2017.
this means that agricultural and forestry employers will,
w.e.f. 1 May 2018;
- have to pay their workers a
minimum of R18.00 per hour worked; and
- not be able to
unilaterally adjust hours worked downwards in order
to lessen the impact on their total wage bill.
On an hourly
basis this represents a
increase on the current minimum wage of R15.39
per hour. This could well lead to job losses. Indeed,
research carried out and reported on in the impact
assessment attached estimates that between 205 000 and
897 000 jobs could be lost through the introduction of the
Forestry South Africa
Tel :+27 33 346 0344
Fax: +27 33 346 0399