Minimum wage to increase 20 percent
June 09, 2010 | Posted by Chris
Starting this July 1, minimum wage in Beijing and elsewhere in China will increase by about 20 percent, to 960 renminbi (RMB) per month, the Straits Times of Singapore reports. While still only equivalent to about $141 USD per month, the increase is double the typical annual wage increase and comes on the heels of several high-profile strikes at factories in China in which employees have demanded higher pay and better working conditions. Strikes at computer manufacturer Foxconn and car manufacturer Honda in recent weeks are regarded as signals that an era of cheap labor is coming to an end in China, and commentators are quick to point out that increased wages in China may have profound effects on the Chinese and global economies. Minimum wage varies in different Chinese cities -- for example, Shanghai has the country's highest with a monthly minimum of 1,120 RMB (about $165 USD) -- and managing China's domestic wealth imbalance will be a key issue in China for years to come.