KUALA LUMPUR, March 20 — The Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) has appealed to the government to reconsider the decision to immediately increase the minimum wages to RM1,500 in May 2022 and instead take on the progressive increment approach as it has suggested.
“We strongly feel that a more gradual increase in the wage rate would still be able to address the increase in the cost of living which is a result of the pandemic and the supply disruptions that have ensued.
“In addition, employers continue to plan for salary increments in 2022 and this would further address the cost of living pressures,” president Tan Sri Soh Thian Lai said in a statement today.
He said the federation strongly believed that with the necessary controls on cost increases in place by the government as well as concerted efforts by the industry to defray cost increases internally, employers could continue to maintain employment and wage adjustments.
Soh said the increase from the current minimum wages rate of RM1,200 to RM1,500 represented an immediate increase of 25 per cent on the basic salary which would have a knock-on effect on the overall payroll cost and spiralling impact on business cost which could potentially derail business and economic recovery.
Based on the findings of the recent FMM-Malaysian Institute of Economic Research Business Conditions Survey for the second half of 2021 which was conducted from Jan 5 to Feb 10, 2022, a majority of the respondents opined that a RM100 increase in the minimum wages is an acceptable rate in this current review given the current economic conditions.
“In this regard, FMM had proposed to the government for the minimum wages adjustment to be implemented gradually with a RM100 increase in the third quarter of 2022 and a subsequent adjustment in 2023/2024 to reach RM1,500,” he added.