KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 7 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said that Putrajaya aims to increase the wage share ratio to 45 per cent, which is 12.6 per cent more than what was recorded last year (32.4 per cent).
In a statement today, Anwar said that the move is one of the government’s initiatives to improve the labour market so that workers will consistently get higher wages and make the wage distribution system more balanced.
“At the same time, following the percentage of Malaysian workers’ income (wage share ratio) has decreased from 37.2 per cent in 2020 to 32.4 per cent in 2022, the government has set a target for this ratio to increase to 45 per cent of the total income,” he said after chairing National Economic Action Council (MTEN) meeting today.
He further said that the progressive wage model initiated by the government is voluntary, incentive-based, and productivity-linked.
Anwar said that the model was put in motion after the perspectives of both employers and workers were taken into consideration.
As of now, he said that the model will complement the Minimum Wage Model and will be followed through with annual progressive wage guidelines for each sectors, jobs and levels.
“Engagement sessions and preliminary surveys have shown that 62 per cent of employees and 80 per cent of companies welcome the proposed progressive wage policy with the stated characteristics.
“And MTEN hopes that this policy will well-received by and see the participation of as many companies and employees as possible,” he added.
Previously, Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli told the media after launching the Employee Wage Statistics formal sector report that the majority of Malaysian workers were paid low wages.
He said that 82 per cent of the 6.45 million formal workers were paid less than RM5,000 a month and 35 per cent of that number were paid RM2,000 and below in March 2023.
Rafizi said the progressive wage model, which will be presented to NEAC, will be an important basis by which the government will deal with wage-related issues.