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BAGUIO CITY -- The Cordillera Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB) has approved Wage Order RB-CAR-18, prescribing the new minimum wage rates of private sector workers in the region effective June 5.

The wage order sets a new daily minimum wage rate depending on the geographic location and industry. Workers in the non-agriculture and retail/service sector with 11 workers and above within Baguio City and La Trinidad has an increased daily minimum wage rate of P300 from the previous P285.

Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) OIC Regional Director Exequiel Ronie A. Guzman, RTWPB-Cordillera chairperson said after several conducts of public hearings and consultations in Baguio City, Abra, Apayao, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga, Tabuk City and Mt. Province the increase was approved by the Board composed of Atty. Milton L. Balagtey and Mr. Renerio C. Lardizabal are the worker's representatives while Businessmen Alfonso T. Lao and Juan Johnny R. dela Cruz are the   employer’s representative. Also sitting in the Board as Vice Chairpersons are National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Regional Director Milagros Rimando and Department of Trade and industry (DTI) Regional Director Myrna P. Pablo.   

“Under the new wage order, all industries or sectors employing 11 employees or more the minimum wage is P300 which includes the P15 cost of living allowance (Cola), while industries employing 10 or less employees, the minimum wage is P285 which includes the P15 Cola.” Guzman added.

The Director also said In Tabuk City, Bangued, Bontoc, Lagawe, Banaue, Buguias, Bauko, Sagada and Tublay, the minimum wage for more than 11 employees is P290 including the Cola; however, for less than 10 employees is P280. The lowest minimum wage in other areas in the region other than those mentioned have a minimum wage of P280 for more than 11 employees but for less than 10 employees is P270.

The wage order was approved by the RTWPB-Cordillera on April 19 and was affirmed by the National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC) on May 15. Effective June 5 the new daily basic minimum wage levels for minimum wage earners after the integration of the P15 Cola in the basic wage shall be P300 for all industries and sectors in Baguio City and La Trinidad; P290 in Tabuk City, Bangued, Bontoc, Lagawe, Banaue, Buguias, Bauko, Sagada and Tublay and P280 for those situated in other areas of the region.

The daily basic minimum wage levels for all industries employing 10 or less  within Baguio City and La Trinidad shall be P285;  P280 for  Tabuk City, Bangued, Bontoc, Lagawe, Banaue, Buguias, Bauko, Sagada and Tublay and P270 in other areas of the region. In the areas of Itogon, Tuba and Sablan, covered workers shall continue to receive the minimum wage rates provided by the previous Wage Order, comprising P285 basic rate per day in all industries and P 270 basic rate for microenterprises.

"Nothing in this order shall be construed to reduce any existing wage rates, allowances and benefits of any form under existing laws, decrees, and executive orders and/or under any contract or agreement between the workers and employers, or employer practices or policies being enjoyed by the workers prior to the issuance of the order." Wage Order No. RB-CAR-18 stated.

In its rationale, the RTWPB emphasized that the new wage order is a realization of the Two-Tiered Wage System (TTWS), which protects minimum wage earners against salaries that are lower than the prescribed amount and rather provides opportunity for workers to earn incentives or productivity-based pay as a result of efficient and effective performance and behavior at work.

The Wage Order RB-CAR-18 is a realization of the need to provide safety measures for the lowly paid workers, who are the minimum wage earners, but to balance it in a manner not prejudicial to the interest of the employers. Any person, corporation, trust or firm, partnership, association or entity that refuses or fails to pay the prescribed increases will be subjected to penal provisions under Republic Act (RA) 6727, known as the Wage Rationalization Act, as amended by the RA 8188.

END/Patrick T. Rillorta


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OIC Regional Director

Dir.Exequiel Guzman
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