May 22, 2019 12:29
The Labor Ministry in an official report on Tuesday belatedly admitted that the drastic minimum-wage hike cost jobs in retail and hospitality.
The government has long been under fire as the policy backfired but so far stubbornly denied there was any connection between the hike and loss of jobs.
The ministry surveyed 94 businesses in the retail, hospitality and auto parts sectors and found that they are "cutting down on new hires" to deal with rising labor costs.
According to the report, rising wages in the low-paying retail and hospitality sectors did not result in increased incomes for workers but instead in their hours being cut. The number of workers who work less than 15 hours a week increased.
Small and mid-sized manufacturers are complaining that the wage hike increases pressure on their business just as they are losing price competitiveness to rivals from China and other developing nations.
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