Vietnam government hikes minimum salaries again

Vietnam government hikes minimum salaries again

HANOI, Dec. 19 Kyodo

Vietnam’s government has decided to increase the minimum monthly salary for government workers from 180,000 dong (about $12.3) to 210,000 dong from Jan. 1, official media reported Tuesday.

The Communist Party of Vietnam’s daily Nhan Dan quoted a government’s decree issued last week as saying pensioners will also enjoy the same increase in benefits.

In December last year the government increased the minimum salary from 144,000 dong to 180,000 dong from Jan. 1 this year.

The decree follows a resolution by the party’s decision-making Central Committee in August last year to compensate the people on the government pay list for the gradual depreciation of the local currency in recent years.

The party committee had decided to make a 50% increase in the following years, but smaller steps may be taken before the final hike because of the government’s modest budget, Dao Duy Quat, deputy head of the committee’s Ideology and Culture Commission, said.

The official also admitted that low salaries contribute to corruption, which is widespread among government officials who seek bribes to support their families.

Rampant corruption has given the country a negative image among local and international businesses and investors.

Most of the pensioners — who are mostly in poor health and of advancing age — also find it hard to make ends meet with their small pensions, he said.

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