3 November 2017 by and Employment Alert

A step closer to minimum wage in May 2018

Cabinet has approved the National Minimum Wage Bill (NMW Bill), Basic Conditions of Employment Amendment Bill and Labour Relations Amendment Bill. 

The NMW Bill provides for an introduction of a minimum wage to come into effect on 1 May 2018. The minimum wage will be R20 per hour but not for all workers. Initially, for farm workers the minimum wage will be R18 per hour, for domestic workers it will be R15 per hour and for workers on an expanded public works programme it will be R11 per hour. 

In a media statement issued by the Department of Labour it was stated that: 

“The Basic Conditions of Employment Bill, 2017 seeks to introduce amendments to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, 1997 in line with the enactment of the National Minimum Wage Act, 2017. The primary amendments to be introduced relate to the repeal of sections of the [Basic Conditions of Employment Act] that relate to the making of sectoral determinations and the powers and functions of the Employment Conditions Commission.

Amendments are also made that affect monitoring and enforcement by the labour inspectorate to apply to compliance with the national minimum wage and unemployment insurance and the jurisdiction of the CCMA is extended to include enforcement procedures and claims for underpayment in terms of the [Basic Conditions of Employment Act], the national minimum wage, unemployment insurance legislation, and claims arising from contracts or collective agreements.

Amendments to the Labour Relations Act [LRA] aim to strengthen collective bargaining and to introduce an advisory arbitration measure to resolve strikes that are intractable, violent or may cause a local or national crisis. The LRA amendments will be accompanied by a Code of Good Practice on Collective Bargaining, Industrial Action and Picketing. The Code is intended to provide practical guidance on collective bargaining, the resolution of disputes of mutual interest and the resort to industrial action.”

According to the media statement, the bills “may now be submitted to the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces for concurrence and enactment”. 

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